This isn’t a review. This isn’t a recap. It’s both mixed with knuckle rocks, sprinkles of fist and something different. Shaken, stirred and kicked. My take on Kingdom, Season 2, Episode 6 on Direct TV’s Audience network.
Remember what I said about Sean Chapas(Mark Consuelos, owner of the devilish smile) being a human torch for Alvey(Frank Grillo) and his world? It’s getting more true every hour. First, they get reacquainted and have a drink. Then, they get into business together. Sean starts showing up to the gym and parking in Alvey’s spot, talking to the women there and showing zero respect for the man’s world. This isn’t an old friend wanting to reconnect. This is a guy who wants to come into a man’s life and rock the ship. Does it have something to do with how Sean and Alvey lost contact? Is it something else? To me, it’s true animals in a cage and that cage is life.
Alvey looks at Chapas as the guy he could have turned into if Lisa hadn’t walked into his life and presented balance. On the surface, this guy is killing it. He has a few cars, two phones, lots of cash, free time and businesses. An ex-fighter doing well outside of a cage. To Alvey, it’s an alternate universe that he doesn’t understand but can’t resist getting sucked into. Maybe it’s the fact everything in his life is carrying turbulence and he has a pregnant wife at home looking at him funny. Maybe it’s hunger for what you don’t have.
It isn’t going to end well. After dinner and drinks, Chapas takes Alvey to a private club, a house full of beautiful women, paid sex, free drinks and the temptation of bad decisions. After escaping the clutches of a free round in the bed with a prostitute, Alvey is thrown the keys by Chapas and he drives them home in Sean’s muscle car. Suddenly, Sean gets all weird, touchy and forces Alvey to give him a shot to the nose. Two drunk men in a phone booth hissing at each other. A cop pulls them over and Alvey has a DWI charge and shit storm coming to his homefront. Is he becoming the beast or is he freeing the beast within? We all have one. It just depends if we let it see the light of day.
Alvey should have listened to Lisa that day. When asked if she read the retirement home investment package, Lisa said, “No. I just read the guy who gave it to you.” She is the smart one here. I love you Kiele Sanchez. A tower of strength and she doesn’t even have to throw a punch.
Elsewhere on Navy Street:
*Nate is still troubled, breaking a man’s arm in the cage during training for Fresno Gate. It doesn’t get any better than Grillo and Nick Jonas coming within a few inches of each other’s faces in the locker room spitting fire at each other. Nate wants to feel something and erase all the inner anguish he feels and Alvey wants to know why his son lacks the killer instinct. He has no idea that his youngest son is a closeted gay trying to make it in a world full of testosterone. A world where one mistake can fuck you up. Jonas has grown up on Navy Street, ladies and gents.
*Poor Jay. Love hurts, my wicked friend. Jonathan Tucker doesn’t hold back one single nuance in his performance. The expressions on Tucker’s face are ALMOST as good as the words that come running out of it. We all know Laura(Jessica Szohr, who could be why cavemen chiseled on walls) is hiding something that will snap Jay’s heart like a knee to the ribs. She is still seeing her ex, the lawyer whose house she is living in. She is afraid of poverty and will forgo real feelings to hold onto it. When we first saw Laura eyeing Jay in the park, she was blown away by how free he was. A person who lived by his own code. Laura doesn’t know that and only knows where the luxury in life is. Finally, Jay confronts the guy and gets Laura’s attention. They have it out. You’ve been a part of this conversation sometime in your life if you are a lover. She ends it. He broils. And the man is chewing on drugs because he can’t eat.
**Tucker acted the shit out of that final dialogue between him and Szohr. Fire on ice, ladies and gents!
*Ryan Wheeler(Matt Lauria, a furnace of emotions himself) has a lot going on. He is reconnecting with his dad while preparing for a new fight, trying to find money and keeping his friend Keith in good health. A full plate for an ex-con with a title belt defense coming up. He is also falling hard for Alicia(Natalie Martinez), having scratched off the “perform oral sex in a ring” accomplishment off his bucket list. Things are getting hot and heavy for the two of them, and since they are keeping it light, their sexual relationship carries the least amount of drama.
*Alicia learns the best unwritten lesson in fighterhood. Don’t sleep in your car overnight in an empty parking lot. When a fighter closes his or her eyes, they are as weak as an ordinary walking soul. She narrowly escaped a car jack to begin the episode, stabbing one guy and punching and kicking another. A broken window finally sets off the alarm for Alvey, who gives her a key to the gym to sleep there. While vying for sponsorship. Alicia shows poor Lisa all the female athlete gauntlet of emotions. She has no money, a shitload of angst and really needs to fight. She nearly walks away from the whole thing after the energy drink interview. She needs to fight and I have a feeling she will get it towards the end of season 2. Martinez, a kickboxer in real life when she isn’t playing make believe, is really giving this role a different feel. Like Laura and Tucker, she never allows you to feel comfortable with where these characters are going.
*Christina quits her job finally, taking no shit, two cheeseburgers and one last check out of Patty Palace. Fast food burger joints are a sign your life is dirty and worthless. I still think she is a problem child for this Kulina family. She isn’t “Chapas fire” but she is a problem. Without a job and sketching all alone is not good for Christina. Especially when her healer Jay doesn’t want to be around her anymore. What a family.
*A Mac Brandt sighting! So much character and not enough screen time to spread the Human Freckled Dartboard’s wealth.
What’s ahead? Fights. Hardship. Problems.
What will the DWI do to Alvey/Lisa and Alvey/Sean? That investment probably won’t pan out. Would you believe Chapas if he told you it was sunny outside? You would go to the window and check.
Will Jay’s love lost get in the way of his big fight? You only get one shot at the title?
Can Ryan put aside the distractions and win his fight?
Will Nate self destruct in Fresno?
Where can you find Kingdom merchandise? I got that answer. You can now own t-shirts, hoodies and sports bottles right here. Get some Kingdom fabric across your chest, ladies and gents.
Until next week, enjoy re-watching Kingdom on Audience. This reviewcap was brought to you by true bald headed Italian muscle grit.