This Barry review contains spoilers.
Barry Season 2 Episode 6
It’s always a risk trying to pull off an off-format episode. There’s always the possibility of failure if you meddle too greatly with your show’s alchemy, but if you knock it out of the park, like the Barry team did last week with “ronny/lily,” it’ll make the return to the show’s regular rhythms feel like a step backward by comparison. “The Truth Has a Ring to It” is more than a serviceable episode of Barry; it’s funny and competently sets each character on their trajectory for the final two episodes of Season 2, it just unfairly has to follow the best episode of the series.
The episode begins with a press conference detailing Detective Loach’s death, with the police quickly writing it off as a domestic dispute between two rival lovers. As I suspected, Loach’s over-zealous partner goes looking for his case files to try and determine if there’s a possibility of foul play, but Barry has already smartly swiped them. Afterward, Barry has to break-up with Fuches yet again, and predictably Fuches doesn’t take it well. He tries to maintain that he’s done nothing wrong, despite wearing a wire and betraying Barry, and keeps asserting that Barry is a violent monster. When Barry pushes back, telling Fuches that he doesn’t know him and that Gene is the true friend and mentor that knows him, Fuches brings up the inconvenient little fact that Barry killed Gene’s girlfriend.
Naturally, to keep Barry under his thumb, Fuches goes out searching for evidence that Barry killed Detective Moss, and it’s the episode’s biggest problem. Being realistic, if a police officer went missing in the woods, every inch of the surrounding area would be exhaustively searched, as the beginning of this season suggests. The fact that Fuches, who has been portrayed as an ineffective putz, is able to find Moss’ car and the police wouldn’t is pretty unbelievable, even if it serves to give us some funny scenes of Fuches haplessly trekking through the woods. I’m not sure why Fuches wouldn’t be able to use the information that Loach gathered or the tape of Barry talking about killing Moss.
Anyway, after seemingly ending things with Fuches, Barry tries to do the same with the Chechens. It’s a clean break, with NoHo Hank being happy with the job that Barry has done. According to Hank, Barry’s debt is paid and the slate is cleaned. He attempts to give Barry a grandiose goodbye speech, but an accordion player interrupts, causing Hank to aggressively dress him down. Later, that same accordion player sells Hank out to the Bolivians and Burmese. As Hank would say, not super great.
The meat of the episode takes place at acting class. Sally tells an unsurprised Barry about her experience with Sam at the hotel and rewrites her scene to be reflective of the truth. Barry tells her, “If you can tell the truth, you should,” which is an interesting way to phrase that considering that Barry is keeping a huge lie from Gene. Playing on that dramatic irony, Gene keeps harping on Barry’s story about Korengal, hilariously repeating “You killed someone and got away with it.” To help Barry pull off Sally’s scene, Gene urges Barry to channel the worst thing that’s ever happened to him, and while Gene assumes that is Korengal, Barry also uses his experience killing Moss, which we see for the first time. The memory causes Barry to perfectly access the rage needed for Sally’s scene, and while that’s illuminating in a way, the action at the acting class says more about Sally.
Sally blows off an audition to work on her scene for Gene’s class, choosing art and self-reflection over commerce. Creatively stifled by a string of nothing roles, Sally is actually doing rewarding work at Gene’s class. She’s also able to be honest and vulnerable in front of the class, which seems like a feat given what we know about Sally’s superficial nature. When she and Barry nail the emotional beats of Sally’s scene, her agent is on hand to notice, which looks like it’s going to lead to new opportunities for Sally.
The episode ends with a bit of a foreboding tease, as Fuches shows up at Gene’s regular restaurant. It would be easy for Fuches to taint Barry’s relationship with Gene, or worse, cause him harm. Considering the outburst we saw from Barry during his scene, when he was specifically thinking about Moss threatening the new life that he has built, we can assume that the violent side of Barry will reemerge if Fuches corners him like an animal. The table has been set for Barry’s final two episodes, and if the end of this episode is any indication, big changes could be on horizon for everyone.
Nick Harley is a tortured Cleveland sports fan, thinks Douglas Sirk would have made a killer Batman movie, Spider-Man should be a big-budget HBO series, and Wes Anderson and Paul Thomas Anderson should direct a script written by one another. For more thoughts like these, read Nick’s work here at Den of Geek or follow him on Twitter.