The trailer for Snowfall’s “Slow Hand” portrayed the episode as one that would be filled with action and retribution. However, there was barely any of either. Instead, “Slow Hand” felt like a filler episode that sets up for future action to come. After “Make Them Birds Fly” honed in on Gustavo and Teddy’s storylines, they were basically forgotten in this episode.
Unlike the first two episodes, “Slow Hand” had a silent start with no overpowering catchy blues or pop song as Franklin reenters Claudia’s club after being robbed and beaten to a pulp. It gave the beginning a more serious tone than prior episodes leading one to believe that something is about to go down. That really wasn’t the case.
Franklin’s ego is busted after being left in the street to die and Claudia calls him out on it. When Franklin comes back demanding who those guys were, she points out that he’s a smooth talker but says he doesn’t know shit about business. Which is true. Ever since the first sale, Franklin has been walking around like he’s untouchable. Maybe all he needed was to get tossed a bit to realize this isn’t like selling candy bars for school.
Trying to prove his bravado, Franklin enlists his friend Leon and Leon’s acquaintance Karvel to help find the guys who took his cash from him. The three jump Lenny, one of the thieves, at his house. While the other two tie Lenny up, Franklin just stands there contemplating on what to do. Just by watching his eyes, you can tell Franklin wants to just get his money and leave. However, Karvel has a different approach that Franklin isn’t quite okay with.
Karvel tries to bust open Lenny’s head but Franklin stops him. Once again it’s brought up how babyish and weak Franklin acts when it comes to this “line of work.” There’s a part of me that feels bad for the kid. Franklin just wants his money and doesn’t want anyone to get hurt, which will most likely never be the case. In the end, Karvel learns where the money is hidden and emerges from a room with Franklin’s cash. Instead of giving it to him, Karvel walks out of the house leaving Franklin and Leon standing dumbfounded in the living room.
Twice in 24-hours Franklin was robbed with the same wad of cash. If he doesn’t learn from this experience to not trust anyone, I don’t know if he ever will.
Another character who is still learning about trust is Teddy. Now dipping their toes into arms dealing, Alejandro and Teddy have to grind down serial numbers on hundreds of decommissioned rocket launchers so they won’t be connected back to the U.S. Army. This act alone pisses Alejandro off who has been dealing with the power struggle between him and Teddy.
Teddy is beginning to get a big head as he becomes comfortable in his new role. What doesn’t help is that his wife and son come to town. Teddy leaves Alejandro alone with the rocket launchers to reconnect with his family. It was nice to finally see Teddy as a four-dimensional character. Seeing him interact with his family and actually smile for once was a nice change of pace in his storyline.
What doesn’t help Teddy is that by having them in Los Angeles it makes him weak especially when his wife tries to rationalize what he is doing and brings up the danger of the war he is in the middle of fighting.
Ultimately she tells Teddy they’re going back to Washington DC while he finishes his “duty” in LA. Not 100 percent fine with the idea, Teddy lets them go and heads back to his first priority: the job. But when Teddy arrived at the warehouse, Alejandro has left a note saying, “Dear Teddy, Fuck You.” And inside the warehouse, the rocket launchers they were scrapping are gone. Just like Franklin, Teddy can’t underestimate who he is dealing with.
Gustavo is the only character who isn’t underestimating his “bosses.” Sadly after making great strides with his storyline in “Make Them Birds Fly,” Gustavo barely got screen time. Of the three characters, Gustavo seems to have the most depth but it is barely explored. He is obviously smart when it comes to the “business” as he constantly challenges Lucia and Pedro as they try to have him kill innocent people for their gain.
Even though these three characters are very different in their own lives, they’re connected by wanting to genuinely be good people who have to ultimately make choices that with hurt others. After being dubbed twice in one day, Franklin makes the decision to get a gun so the next time someone crosses him he’ll be ready. But with his track record, he might never be.