The Deuce: My Name Is Ruby
October 30, 2017 4:13 PM - Season 1, Episode 8 - Subscribe

Vincent balks at getting in deeper with Rudy, as expansion fever hits Frankie and Bobby. Candy gets a taste of directing, and enjoys the red-carpet perks of a major premiere. Alston finds himself in limbo at his precinct. Abby changes up the Hi-Hat's clientele; Sandra faces editorial and legal hurdles; Barbara and Thunderthighs connect with the wrong sort of clients; Vincent settles a score. C.C. encourages Ace, a onetime pimp, to get back in the game.
posted by rhizome (9 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I was furious about Ruby's end, to the point where I don't think I'll come back for the next season. She was one of my favorites.
posted by TwoStride at 9:03 PM on October 30, 2017

Apparently, Ruby's death is taken from the person her character was based on. That is how she actually died so making it the major dramatic point of the season finale seems like a tribute. She's thrown out a window like she doesn't matter and decades later a character based on her is given a lot of dramatic weight in the season finale.

She was a favorite of mine too and personally she's a character I wish I knew a lot more about. I find her more compelling than Lori, certainly.
posted by miss-lapin at 9:53 PM on October 30, 2017 [6 favorites]

Oh. I'm so inured to death on screen, but I really felt a cold shock at Ruby's. The casual viciousness of her killer.. all the callous jokes swirling about her body... seeing how she did all the right things on the street, knew the game, but still lost in the end. The horribleness of knowing she was only outside because she couldn't get picked at the brothels. And no one who cared for her, or felt anything at her death, had any real impact at all. Totally senseless. Poof! She's just.. gone. The world kept turning, didn't miss a beat.
posted by fritillary at 12:10 AM on October 31, 2017 [3 favorites]

Apparently the next series will take place in the mid-80s, at the start of the AIDS hysteria, the VHS porn boom and Times Square at its lowest as far as property values go (or was that the early 80s?), so I'm guessing most characters will not return for it. I'm sure Candy and one of the Twins will return, but the rest...
posted by lmfsilva at 12:52 PM on October 31, 2017 [1 favorite]

Larry the Dick surprisingly wound up low man on the totem pole, possibly having second thoughts about his choice of career? He was certainly affected by Reggie's shooting. I'd been waiting for him to get his comeuppance and it's pretty tasty that it turns out to be an existential one.
posted by rhizome at 3:04 PM on October 31, 2017 [1 favorite]

In Simon's and Pelecanos' interview with Alan Sepinwall, he said the second season would be the late 70s and the final season would be the mid-80s. I love David Simon, but I really, really don't know that I need his take on the AIDS crisis. I get that if Paul stays in the show, we can't skip that, but it feels vaguely disrespectful to me for Simon to tackle it, although he does mention hiring a new writer for that story.

The finale episode didn't sit well with me. I hated Ruby's death. I hated the cliche unheard shout from Candy, on her way to the premiere. I thought there were some other cliches -- Vincent actually dries a glass at the bar and says, "That's the deuce!" The wig dialogue between Eileen and Darlene felt like there was no subtext. A lot of this episode, in fact, felt like the writers didn't trust the audience to get the subtext. The one exception was Alston's story -- we can tell he's lost both Sandra and any credibility he had at the precinct.

I didn't think I'd hate CC as much as I do by the end of this season. Getting punched by Alston wasn't enough to make up for it.
posted by gladly at 11:05 AM on November 1, 2017 [2 favorites]

I think the scene about the wig is about how Darlene is afraid of being recognized. Consider that against Lori's pride in being the girl in the peeps. Darlene is more ambivalent about her career as a sex worker whereas Lori is not at all. She clearly likes being recognized.

But also I think it's an ambivalent scene. Eileen has become empowered by her ability to direct porn and communicate effectively with the performers. But her talking to Darlene about the wig, is that an attempt to genuinely make Darlene feel unashamed about her life as a sex worker or is it just exploitation in the same way the pimps? Is she merely using what she knows to get what she wants from her performers regardless of their own concerns? I don't know if there is a simple answer to that. I think it's both and that's what makes it an interesting scene.
posted by miss-lapin at 11:35 AM on November 1, 2017

I do agree, the wig scene is about porn performers becoming more open and accepting of what they do. The conversation just seemed really explicit to me -- like explicitly stating the themes of the show. We've seen Candy and Eileen integrate from the beginning of the show where Candy was always in her blonde wig and Eileen in her own hair. That felt very organic in the world of the show.

Thinking about whether or not Eileen is enacting a pimp's role with Darlene -- whether Eileen knows that or not -- does make it more interesting.
posted by gladly at 7:27 PM on November 1, 2017 [1 favorite]

That shot towards the end of the episode of two of the pimps walking down the street was breathtaking. It felt like exactly like watching a movie filmed in New York in the 70s. MacLaren did an amazing job with this.
posted by Automocar at 8:07 PM on November 1, 2017

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