And we meet again
Episode 1 of The Outlaws season 2 opens on a tense note. We hear the ragged breathing of a girl in the back of a black car. the vehicle is taking her someplace distant. Finally, she is taken out and sat on a chair. Off comes the piece of cloth from her head and it is Rani herself.
Her kidnappers? Christian Taylor (or Malacki), who runs the drug cartel for the Dean in Bristol. “72 hours earlier” slams on the screen and Rani is standing at Ben’s door to ask for help. She explains that she got into a massive fight with her parents over her decision not to go to Oxford (as confirmed in season one) and that she needed a place to stay for some days.
Something delicious is cooking in ben’s apartment
Esme teases her about the unfinished relationship between Ben and her. There is definitely some sort of spark between them but we will have to wait and see what comes out on the other end.
Lady Gabriella is shooting a commercial but is just emerging from a drug rave with her friends. Myrna has fleeting visions of the police officer, while John has a new person in the factory, Lesley, and his dad back in the boardroom. Frank is still at home and is struggling to find the money that Tommy has hidden somewhere in the house.
Tommy decides he will use it to pay off the house’s mortgage. Frank interjects and says that he got to “wash” it first; launder it. The boy is also angry with Frank because he booked a ticket to Rio, once again prepared to abandon his mother and the family.
Trainwreck Lady Gabriella
Gabriella’s shoot goes horribly wrong as something or the other spoils the scene until she herself bashes the machine she is promoting with a stick. Lesley has plans to ramp up profitability but with only significant changes to their business. With the partnership that John has struck with Graham Hilgard, they might be able to change the outlook. John’s father isn’t pleased or convinced.
We see the first of Greg in this season during a hilarious sequence in his office’s lift. He has struck an agreement with Spencer, as suggested in the last season’s finale. Now, Greg has his eye on Anne Marie, his colleague but is nervous like his usual self. Gabriella will be bankrupt if she doesn’t cut back on spending. Her father has frozen her allowance after her rowdy act on his lawn.
And before you know it, the seven are back at Community Payback, again. Diane is again in charge, training to be a PCSO. Rani suggests that Tommy might have stashed the money at his school locker. Diane warns Ben and Rani against any more mischief with a personal tragic experience from her own life. Christian drives by, fingers guns blazing.
It is then that the group collectively discusses the bag of money. Rani and Gabriella are the only ones who don’t know about it. The latter is hardly concerned and invites them to a party at Ergo. Frank makes a copy of Tommy’s locker keys and follows him to school. He finds the money in the locker. Lesley breaks news to John that he is being fired from the job and that his father has agreed to accept Hilgard’s deal.
Exploring the dark side
Ben and Greg go to Christian’s place and blackmail him into working together against the Dean. Ben goes to the same place he committed the robbery and returns Dean’s “line” (phone) as a gesture of good faith. He talks directly with him and strikes a mutual ceasefire. Frank says he is going out for drinks and takes the bag of money when no one is looking.
Tommy still thinks he has it and in his mind, knows Frank cannot run away. Will he though? Let’s see. Rani’s mother drops off heer Mr. Snuggles at Ben’s apartment but leaves after yet another argument about Oxford. Rani decides to step out and goes to Gabriella’s party. Diane and Greg join in too. Myrna and John aren’t far behind.
Frank, meanwhile, acts on his scheme of laundering the money through the casino route. He visits several and gets clean money through cheques. At the Ergo, Gabby spots Anne Marie, Greg’s co-worker. She also brokers a deal with Anne to go on a date with Greg for a selfie in return. But things get salty when Greg suggests that her “friends” aren’t really her friends; they’re moochers.
Gabby fires Greg – again. Frank arrives at the Ergo. He is indeed leaving – again abandoning his family. He asks Ben to deliver a thousand pounds to his daughter. What a disgrace! The group is having fun when the manager asks Gabby to settle the bills. As anticipated, her cards are declined s her father has cancelled them. Frank clears in and Gabby says this: “I wish you were my father Frank! Who leaves their daughter high and dry at one in the morning?”
A case of changing priorities
The night is over and they all go home. Frank rethinks his decision to go to Rio. Rani and Ben go back, where he leaves her like a gentleman to sleep off the alcohol. Gabby comes back to an eviction notice on her front door. Frank comes back home and realizes he cannot leave again. He offers to pay off his daughter’s mortgage and says he won the money at a “casino”. He and Tommy share a laugh secretly.
A sober Rani comes to Ben’s bed and makes love. Gabby scampers for a room but eventually has to go to Greg’s, where they make up. A couple of men kidnap Ben and Rani from their house, as we go back to that opening scene. It turns out Christian has not kidnapped them as he is himself in cuffs, along with Ben and Rani. Christian’s man, whom we saw earlier in the episode, ratted them out. The Dean gives them eight weeks to get their money back.
The Episode Review
Season 1 of The Outlaws saw our group successfully wade off the threat of the Dean. The antagonist did not show up then despite indications he would. But he features overbearingly in episode 1 of season 2 and it seems like he will have a big say in how things pan out.
Ben and Rani are up against it from the get-go, this time. Christian is swept in the wave too and the three must work together to bring back Dean’s money. That is a next to impossible task as most of it is already spent by Frank, who redeems himself in his family and our eyes by his final move. What a coincidence Gabby said that line just before he was about to leave!
Greg and Gabby’s relationship has been topsy-turvy and the same energy continues in the first episode.
It can get a big ugly but knowing Greg, he can calm her down in any situation. Episode 1 had some great laughs and a chance for the group to be effective collectively. The runtime was steep and at times they were stretched thin for content. But the sweeping end to the episodes that defined season 1 ensured that it finished indeed with a flourish.