With only one episode left in season four – next Sunday’s ‘Storia Americana’ – this week’s instalment, ‘Happy’, gave us a glimpse at how the finale might leave things. Here’s what happened.
— Fargo (@FargoFX) November 20, 2020
Line of the week: “That’s the new guy’s problem, but my guess is that it rhymes with ‘flurder’!” – Josto Fadda
Josto (Jason Schwartzman), the brains of the Fadda outfit, hatched a dastardly plan to bring an end to the deadly mob war with Cannon Limited. He reached out to Cannon allies Happy and Leon, offering to respect their criminal enterprise if they made life difficult for the Cannons in Kansas City. The above line was how Josto suggested Happy deal with Loy (Chris Rock), though fortunately the Cannons’ spy tipped him off about the betrayal.
We can expect the Cannons to wipe out Happy, Leon and their gang next week, unless Loy tries to appeal to them one more time. The Cannons are desperately short of manpower after all, and Loy or his wife Buel might try again to argue that Black folk in Kansas City must stick together.
Classic ‘Fargo’ moment: Gaetano shoots himself in the face
Death is often unexpected in Fargo, and so it was with the surprise early exit of Gaetano Fadda. He’d been cruising for a bruising for weeks, but in the end it was a slippery patch of sidewalk that got him, the mob underboss tripping and, as he tried to catch his fall, accidentally firing his pistol into his own face.
Brothers Josto and Gaetano really built bridges in the previous two episodes, but don’t expect Josto to mourn his sibling’s death for long. The don is so ruthless that I wouldn’t be surprised if his new-found love for his brother was at least 80% performance. Mourned even less will be Odis Weff, whom Gaetano killed moments before his accident, the veteran detective having finally run out of people who didn’t want him dead.
Star of the episode: Ethelrida Smutny
Precocious teen Ethelrida came into her own in ‘Happy’, negotiating with a mob boss while helping the police catch a serial killer. In the end, nurse Oraetta Mayflower was bested by her neighbour with ease, Ethelrida’s allegations of murder being corroborated by Dr. Harvard, who woke up in hospital after Oraetta’s bungled attempt on his life.
I suppose this season needed at least one principled character, but still, I was hoping there would be some sort of alliance between Oraetta and Ethelrida, and though there were definitely hints of camaraderie early on, their story arcs ended up going in opposite directions very quickly.
Zombie watch: keeping it in the family
Well whaddya know, unlike with earlier seasons’ unexplained spaceships, we actually got a full explanation of this series’ supernatural phenomenon. The ‘zombie’ haunting the Smutnys is the ghost of Theodore Roache, a cruel slave ship captain who was murdered by Ethelrida’s great, great grandfather somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean. “Your granny was six when she saw him the first time, the Roache, and he’s been with us ever since,” her mother Dibrell told her.
This week’s biggest question: what will Loy Cannon do with Donatello Fadda’s stolen ring?
Colour me confused by the ending to Fargo season 4 episode 10, which saw Ethelrida visit Loy Cannon to bargain for her parents’ mortuary business. The Cannons had run up a huge bill at the Smutny funeral parlour due to the burgeoning war with the Faddas, which Ethelrida offered to write-off. This wasn’t enough to sway Loy, but her ace in the hole was the ring she recovered from Oraetta’s house, which was taken by the murderous nurse from the corpse of one Donatello Fadda (Josto and Gaetano’s late father).
This seemed to do the trick and gave Loy pause, but why? The ring won’t hold much sentimental value to the Faddas, nor will the callous and self-concerned Josto be particularly interested in avenging his dad’s death. Perhaps Loy could use the ring to frame Josto for the death of the don? If a witness – or better still, covert photography – can prove Josto had a relationship with Oraetta, Loy might be able to argue that he paid her to bump off his father. We’ll find out in next week’s season finale which, if traditions prevails, should have a high body-count.
‘Fargo’ airs Sunday nights on FX in the US, with a UK broadcast on Channel 4 expected sometime in 2021