Gut-wrenching Ray Donovan episode

Warning: Do not read until you have seen Season 5 Episode 8.

I am just unwrapping myself from the foetal position having watched this week’s episode of Ray Donovan, “Horses.”

That wasn’t just the most powerful episode of the season.

It was one of its biggest punch in the guts the show has ever delivered.

Sure, we have known the death of Abby (Paula Malcomson) was imminent. It’s been fleshed out over the whole season, with Terry’s (Eddie Marsan) confession to Ray (Liev Schreiber) last week.

But the way it unfolded this week was searing stuff. As Ray secured a place in an experimental cancer treatment, Abby swallows the pills that will send her to sleep. Daughter Bridget -with Kerris Dorsey turning in mature performances- was there to the very end, but painfully torn between her mother’s wishes and her father’s anguish.

A final scene at Abby’s bar in which pain and blame are unleashed in a family brawl was brutal stuff… again with poor Bridget watching on in horror. There were no winners in this graphic, tragic scene.

But where did Conor (Devon Bagby) go? Why was he denied a final moment, last seen in the bar? It felt incomplete to me on this front….

Ray Donovan may not be pulling the same audience figures as previous seasons, barely appearing in the STV Top 20, but as this week proved it still has some serious dramatic punch.


  1. I’m on the same page as David and pretty much everyone else here feeling underwhelmed by this season after it’s immaculate run of excellence, but boy was this devastating. Hopefully the rest of the episodes will make up for it.

  2. This is one of my favourite shows but this season has been painful.. I’m not even sure why Susan Sarandon is in it as her character has had almost zero impact. Abby has been a great character but this part of the story should have been wrapped up after 3 or 4 episodes, if this had been the 2nd season I wouldn’t be watching the 3rd.

  3. Sorry to say it but Ray Donovan has had its day, I have not seen this particular episode but the early episodes became dour, which is understandable with Abby having her final season, but there’s not much other diversity in the story to maintain my enthusiasm to watch more, unlike past seasons.

    • Ratings are not as strong as early seasons, but that’s normal fatigue. If you haven’t watched recently it’s a bit of a stretch to say it has had it’s day. That said, without Abby it will be harder to win a renewal.

  4. I agree David, it was an extremely powerful episode. I’ve struggled through the early episodes of this season, but the last few have really been strong, with last night’s being one of the best hours I’ve seen in a drama.

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