Episode Title: 'Who's the Horse and Who's the Rider?'
Writer: Mitch Glazer
Director: Nick Gomez
Previously on "Magic City":
Danny (Christian Cooke) confronts Stevie (Steven Strait) on the beach about the pictures of his brother with the Butcher's Wife and the two get into a fight. Danny tells Stevie that he's nothing like him or Ike and he hopes Lily is worth risking his life for.
Klein (Matt Ross) looks at Jimmy Shoes' deteriorated remains and tells Doug (Todd Allen) to send for Ike. However, Doug tips off Ben Diamond (Danny Huston) before reaching out to Ike's lawyer. Meanwhile, Ike (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) meets with Meg (Kelly Lynch) in hopes of convincing her to buy fifteen percent of his majority stake in the Miramar Playa.
Later that day, Ike learns that plans to host a TV show at the hotel have fallen through and Castro is preventing a major Latin dance act from performing as well. That night, a troubled Vera (Olga Kurylenko) tells Ike she's can't have children, but he takes the news in stride.
Danny and Vincent (John Cenatiempo) try to figure out who has been robbing rooms at the Miramar Playa. Based on the culprit's ability to climb up to the balcony, Danny suspects poolside entertainer, Divin' Dave Donahue. His hunch is confirmed by the file on Donahue he receives from Klein''s office.
Over at the hotel coffee shop, Victor (Yul Vazquez) gets word that a boat has been secured to bring his wife, Maria over from Cuba. Danny stops by Stevie's room to let him know about Divin' Dave. He urges him to tell Ike but Stevie says he needs time to think it over.
Ike shows up at Klein's request and is questioned by the D.A. about Jimmy Shoes and Judi Silver. Ike claims to know nothing about either of them or the quarry he owns where Shoes' body was found. Klein warns Ike that he's stuck between a rock and a hard place, with the D.A.s office on his case and the murderous Diamond for a business partner.
After getting sentimental about her days at the Tropicana, Vera offers to put an act together for the Miramar Playa, but Ike sternly shoots down the idea. That night, Stevie confronts Divin Dave, who tells him to either pay up or kill him. Elsewhere, Senator Sloat (Brett Rice) plays cards with Ben Diamond and insists he never received a bribe from Ike. Stevie tells Lily (Jessica Marais) about his predicament but assures her he has a plan. She in turn, makes a call to a man named Sy in Chicago and lets him know she's being blackmailed. Stevie finds a solution for the problem by letting Ben know that Dave is the one robbing the hotel.
Meg drops by the Miramar Playa to inform Ike that her lawyer advised her against taking him up on his offer. Afterwards, Ben invites Ike over for cocktails. That night, Ben confronts Ike about paying Sloat ten grand to vote against gambling. Ike denies it and Ben loses his temper, insisting Ike pay him back the one-hundred grand he gave him.
As a last resort, Ike pays a late night visit to Meg to ask for the money he owes Ben. At first she refuses, but when he confesses to Meg that her father forced him to sign away his children's' inheritance, she has a change of heart. Ben gets his money while elsewhere, Klein locates the now redheaded Judi Silver (Elena Satine).
"I hate to beat this to death" says Ben Diamond to Senator Sloat, before asking him, yet again, if ever received a bribe from Ike. Truth is we know Ben loves beating things, and people to death. The only question now is who will be first, Ike, Stevie, Lily or Judi?
Things are finally starting to come together at the seams with "Magic City," though at times it's feels post-haste. Case in point, the opening scene on the beach between Danny, who looks down on Stevie's playboy lifestyle, and Stevie who resents Danny for abandoning the Miramar Playa for a higher education. It's unfortunate we had to wait for the season's penultimate episode just to scratch the surface of their relationship but better late than never, I guess.
The tension between Vera and Meg, however, has been simmering all season. The scene where Meg meets her niece for the first time elevated the friction between these two, especially considering Vera's strained relationship with her step-daughter. It's still unclear exactly what Meg wants out of her relationship with Ike though I'd like to think it's more than just somewhat creepy sex, under the circumstances.
We also delved deeper into Stevie's feelings for Lily. Turns out it has something to do with his fear of heights. Also, he thinks he loves her. The relationship is still a flatliner for me, and that's not because Ben Diamond will likely kill at least one of them.
On that note, Stevie gambled that Divin' Dave wouldn't get a chance to tell Al and Bel about the polaroids before they offed him for robbing the hotel. That fire may be out but now Lily's gone ahead and reached out to one of Ben's associates, from the sound of that phone call.
As for Ike, I'm still not sure why he felt the need to bribe Senator Sloat, a publicly avowed opponent of gambling, to vote no an upcoming bill. Anyone but Ike could see that Ben Diamond temper tantrum coming a mile away, forcing Ike to drop by Meg's in the middle of the night, begging for a hundred large. When she turns him down, he's forced to divulge a shameful family secret to change her mind. Perhaps she'll also change her mind about investing in the Miramar Playa, based on what she learned from Ike.
Then there's matter of the resurfaced and redheaded Judi Silver. She'll likely be the woman of the hour in next week's season finale. Whether or not she survives to season two, it's almost certain someone is going to die before season's end. And as Lily told Stevie, Ben Diamond will make sure it's slow and painful.