I became addicted to “Billions” for many reasons. I started binge watching it in early March. Each season was better than the prior, until the last episode of season 5. Bobby Axelrod boarding a plane for Switzerland was Fonzie “Jumping The Shark.” He would never do such a thing. Other than the finale of season 6, the rest of season 6 was painful to watch. Other than their trademark references spewn throughout the dialogue, the episodes were drudgery, making the audience eagerly awaiting each to end, and I know why.
The greatness of the series is twofold. First, the writers use a technique employed in comedy. Take a topic with a grain of truth and exaggerate it beyond reality. Billions uses the stereotype of successful business leaders as evil immoral money grubbers and exaggerates it beyond any sense of reality. Being an equal opportunity offender or appeaser, depending on your political proclivity, they do the same for politicians and government officials. This group is depicted as corrupt and power hungry, willing to do anything go gain said power via scheming, bribery and any sort of skullduggery. This technique of exaggeration has been combined with excellent writing. Each episode is its own thriller with mind bending endings, while wedded to the story arc of the season.
Season 6 is a complete let down. The writers have gone in a ridiculous direction, making all players out to be altruistic beings, employing their profession’s worst behaviors, but in the name of some greater good. Besides the writers preaching to the audience, the stories are not interesting. No longer is the viewer emersed in the suspense of the plot. Instead, every other scene has a “BS” moment when the authors interject another preachy political opinion. Be it higher taxes, global minimum income, free public transportation or the climate cause de jour, the show is a press release from the woke mob. Without debating the merits of these causes, it is not the Billions of the first five seasons and definitely a formula that would not have been renewed if employed in Season 1. Killing a successful franchise by corporate moguls should be a crime and one worthy of prosecution by Chuck Rhodes.