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Recap / Fargo S 03 E 06 The Lord Of No Mercy

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Ray and a still-recovering Nikki plot revenge against Yuri and Meemo, but are forced to use caution when they see them with Varga. Emmit and Sy listen to Varga's plan to expand Stussy Lots by 16 garages within three months; Sy is wary, but Emmit seems eager. Gloria and Winnie want to question Emmit, but Varga curtails the meeting. The two officers then knock on Ray's apartment door, so he and Nikki hide, then check into a motel room, not knowing Varga has ordered a hit on them. Ray forgets the $10,000 and returns to his apartment to retrieve it. There he finds Emmit, who offers to end the feud by giving Ray the framed stamp and offering to give Ray anything else he may want. Ray is leery, and they argue. When the frame accidentally breaks in a shoving match, a shard of glass severs Ray's carotid artery, killing him. A distraught Emmit calls Varga who manages the cleanup, suggesting that Ray abused Nikki, causing her injuries, and she retaliated. Gloria, driving out of St. Cloud, changes her mind and reverses course to go question Ray at his home.

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Tropes:

  • Accidental Murder: Emmit accidentally ends up killing Ray with a piece of glass amidst their skirmish.
  • Anyone Can Die: Given that the series looked to be building Ray up like the main Villain Protagonist of the season, almost nobody expected him to kick the bucket halfway through the season.
  • Bait-and-Switch: The episode builds it up like Meemo and Nikki are going to be battling it out, but he's pulled out by Varga at the last minute to help clean up Ray's apartment after Emmit's Accidental Murder. This makes the episode's Character Death all the more surprising.
  • Character Death: Ray via Accidental Murder at the hands of his brother.
  • Continuity Nod: Emmit recalls reading about Ennis Stussy's death, which he commented on in "The Principle of Restricted Choice."
  • Death by Irony: He wanted the stamp so badly that he couldn't accept it just being given to him. The whole thing is made doubly ironic when you realize that his whole life he'd hated how successful his brother had gotten, and the last thing he does is ask Emmit for help.
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  • Decoy Protagonist: Ray turns out to be one of these, dying with almost half the plot yet to be resolved.
  • Fan Disservice: Nikki walking around in her bra and lying in an ice bath showing off her badly bruised body.
  • Frame-Up: Varga wants to pin Ray's death on Nikki.
  • Gross-Up Close-Up: We get one of these of Varga picking at his bleeding teeth with an ice pick.
  • Impromptu Tracheotomy: Ray dies by having a piece of broken glass punctuating his carotid.
  • Improvised Weapon: Nikki forms a hanger into a hook to defend herself at the motel. She doesn't get to use it.
  • Moon-Landing Hoax: Varga uses this as an example during his speech on "perception becomes reality." Whether he's saying it really was a hoax or if he's just messing with Sy and Emmit is unclear.
  • Mugging the Monster: Nikki and Ray start messing up Emmit's life and think that the worst that could happen is that Sy will try to get back at them. They are for a very rough surprise when they find that their actions mess with Varga's "investment" in Emmit and Varga does not take such stuff lightly.
  • Ominously Open Door: Nikki is alarmed by the motel room door being slightly more ajar than when she left it.
  • Pants-Positive Safety: Ray shoves his gun in the front of his pants.
  • Plot Armor: Averted with Ray, which more than likely Enforces this for Emmit, given that Ewan McGregor's top billing will have to survive through him only from this point on.
  • Surprisingly Sudden Death: Dies unexpectedly with little foreshadowing.
  • Trespassing to Talk: When Ray returns to his flat, Emmit sitting on the couch in the dark, waiting for him.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Ray acts this way once he's made Emmit's life hell enough for him to give up the stamp.
    Ray: You can't give me what was mine from the start.
  • Was Just Leaving: How Varga makes the two female police officers to leave the premises.

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