Ray has a lot on his plate, including the bribing of a city official and a violent confrontation with Romero.
With Paige’s NFL deal essentially falling through after Governor Verona’s re-election bid failed in last week’s episode, Ray, the rest of the Donovans, and the Finneys are trying to recover in “All Must Be Loved.” Secrets are out, deals are falling through, relationships are changing, and pretty much all of it is bad news.
As bad as the re-election failure is, Ray isn’t willing to give up his (current and hopefully profitable) dream of getting 3 percent of Paige’s NFL deal. She’s distraught—that’s what wearing sunglasses inside means in terms of character—but Ray thinks he has a way of making the deal happen, which obviously involves bribing city officials.
Paige is at least willing to try. She’s ready to cut some ties from the Finneys, and that includes her husband. She tells him that she wants a divorce, and he’s shocked, as if sleeping in separate bedrooms and, oh yeah, having an affair with Paige’s father, weren’t signs that this marriage was on the rocks.
While that marriage is crumbling, there’s another taking off. Bunchy and Teresa decide that they definitely want to get married. For that to happen, Bunchy needs his settlement money, which Ray is still holding hostage, supposedly for Bunchy’s own good.
Of course, when Bunchy comes to his brother and honestly and openly tells him why he needs the money, Ray turns him down. He tells him that he doesn’t even know Teresa and that he’s rushing into things. There might be some truth to that, but Ray isn’t exactly the guy who should be doling out marriage or financial advice.
What follows is one of this season’s better scenes, even if it’s just a small one. Bunchy lambasts Ray for treating him like a child. He tells Ray that he deserves his money because he was the one who stood up and told everyone about what happened to him. He had the courage to speak up, not Ray, so he shouldn’t have any control over his money. It’s the most relatable and honest Bunchy’s ever been, which is great for a character that’s always been a bit of a joke.
Money is central to everything happening in “All Must Be Loved.” It’s what drives Bunchy to Mickey and Darryl. When Ray refuses to give him any of the settlement money, he goes to see his father with the hopes of getting involved in their dirty business. Mickey and Darryl are all too happy to see him, especially since they owe $30,000 to the Armenians and they’ve taken Darryl’s Cadillac as collateral.
Mickey thus devises a plan where the Donovan kids will meet with the Armenians, hand over some fake money, then beat them up and run away. It’s not much of a plan, but it’s something I guess. No one really knows the plan except for Mickey, so when they meet the Armenians later that night, things go off the rails.
Mickey and Darryl are outmatched, but then Bunchy grabs a pipe and wreaks havoc on everybody, perhaps releasing some of that pent-up rage he feels toward his abuser, and even Ray. The Donovans manage to get away this time, but back at the apartment reality sinks in. It won’t be long before the Armenians come after them even harder than before.
NEXT: Everybody’s a sinner
While Ray is definitely focused on making sure Paige’s NFL deal still goes through, if only because he wants to appease Abby and buy her family’s bar, he also has to start thinking about Terry. When they visit the doctor, one without an ounce of bedside manner, he tells them that Terry’s condition is worsening and that it would be best if he had someone living with him.
Ray decides, without telling Terry, that he’ll give the guest room to his brother. That gives Abby an excuse to decorate the whole room, because she doesn’t have much else going on in her life right now, because this show treats her character like an accessory and not an active player.
Unsurprisingly though, Terry doesn’t want to live with Ray and his family. He tells Ray that he needs to focus on his own family, that he’s got too much going on to have to care for Terry as well. He’s right, too. Ray always finds other problems to fix rather than his own. Hell, Bridget is drinking vodka during the day with a friend and starting a creepy relationship with her teacher and Ray doesn’t have a clue.
What Ray needs is a moment of realization, and for a second it seems like he’ll get it. When he gets a call from Father Romero about Bunchy and the dead priest, Ray loses it. He can’t believe his brother would be stupid enough to talk about that, but as Bunchy says, he needed to talk to someone about it and he trusted him.
Ray pays Romero a visit at a church/hospital where the chaplain works to heal priests who have abused in the past. He says that he offers them a place of peace, somewhere where they can reckon with what they’ve done and maybe move on with their lives.
Ray isn’t too into the idea of rehabilitation—remember, Ray still hasn’t really dealt with the trauma of his own abuse—but when Romero tells him that all will be forgiven if Ray just repents for killing the priest, he’s tempted by the offer.
Of course, Ray thinks it’s Romero’s way of blackmailing him; in my opinion though, Romero really does want to help Ray spiritually. That doesn’t mean he’s a good guy, but it does show how twisted Ray’s perspective is after years of doing dirty work.
Ray begins his confession, but he can’t finish it. He goes to leave the church, but Romero pushes him, continually asking him to repent and be saved. Ray flips and beats the hell (no pun intended) out of Romero. Once he’s got that out of his system, he gets a call from Paige. She thinks she’s figured out how to get the deal done.
Ray heads to her house and discovers that discussing the deal isn’t what Paige has in mind, as she climbs the stairs to her bedroom. He says that he has to leave more than once, but he doesn’t, and the episode ends with Ray standing there contemplating his next move.