After an opening set of episodes that moved at a deliberate pace, the third episode of Heels‘ second season, titled “Discord,” seemed to fast-forward a couple of big story points and brought a lot to bear by the end. Was it too much, too fast? That will depend largely on how the rest of the season plays out, but it’s something to consider, to be sure.
The show opens in flashback as a young Jack is punished by his mother for swiping a piece of cake intended for guests. He takes a belt whipping from her, and as we jump to the present with Jack urging her to tell him where Ace went, he tells her that he still wears his dad’s belt as a reminder to not be like her. In the end, he takes her phone to track down Ace’s location himself.
Ace, meanwhile, cannot hobble away from where he fell, but a couple of rock climbers hear him call out and they get him to a motel to ice up his ankle — whether it’s broken or sprained we’re not sure.
We catch up with Rootser for a spell as he’s using his success at Dystopia to buy his dad a new bed. His father isn’t sold on the car crash wrestling Rooster’s doing, imploring that you’d never catch Rocky Johnson using a bat to deal with someone. Rooster laughs it off.
Back at DWL headquarters, Willie has been left in charge of writing the next show with Jack gone. Diego is helping Wild Bill start a podcast, but it’s completely in character as Bill goes over his issues with Crystal and Charlie Gully from Dystopia. Willie is working on the script with Crystal, and they’re working well with one another as they decide she needs to be tossed around a bit by the men to show that it’s not going to come easy for her. The men join in on the meeting, sort of, but don’t pay much attention to Willie, forcing her to tell Bill privately that they need to pay attention to her just like they would to Jack, and he needs to lead them.
Back with Ace, he thanks his helpers and very bluntly invites them to stay and fool around with him, and they very bluntly tell him in return that he needs to understand when someone is doing something nice and not expecting sex out of it. The best line in the exchange has Ace explaining how he didn’t hurt himself even worse, as he says”I know how to fall.” In wrestling and in life, it’s a nice double entendre.
Later, he loses his temper and trashes some of the hotel room, just before Jack tracks him down. Ace is not receptive at all as Jack lays out all of his guilt and regret, invoking his unresolved issues with their dad. Eventually, Ace starts dumping out his feelings, his own guilt. but he still says he’s not coming home. They make their peace, Jack leaves him with some cash, and then he leaves him.
Plans are up in the air at DWL, as Debbie shows everyone a news report on a growing trend of pro athletes being caught on camera rag-dolling their wives or girlfriends, and it becomes obvious that the plan to have the DWL men do that to Crystal will not go over as intended. After Willie sends everyone off while she thinks it through, Bobby and Crystal enjoy a sweet moment together after Bobby asks if there could be something more than friendship between them.
Jack returns during all of this, his head clearly spinning and he’s seemingly only half-listening to Willie as she explains both the storytelling issue, and also the fact that she felt great flexing her creativity in that role. As she makes a pitch for a women’s division, Jack inadvertently dismisses her, not realizing he’s brushed her off — and then turns around to see Gulley and Rooster waiting for him by ringside. It’s an interesting point how Rooster left the DWL for bigger exposure in the story, but in actuality his role is reduced in the actual show, meaning Heels, since it’s naturally focused on DWL’s day-to-day operations and not Dystopia’s.
Gulley offers an olive branch (which Jack says he can stick up his rear end), and also offers some cross-promotional business. Jack turns him down flat, so Gulley instead calls out his attorney to serve Jack with papers for assaulting him. He could press charges, or they could have their promotions do business together. He’ll let Jack think on it. It feels like a perfect ending for the episode.
The actual ending of the episode, however, features the hurried up story points referred to earlier, as Ace (after experiencing a horrific nightmare involving Crystal, Bobby, and his dead father) returns home to Duffy just after Jack finds that Staci and Thomas have also returned home to try again as a family. It seems, then, that we’re about to see a strong Spade family do battle with Dystopia in one form or another.
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