Richard Hendrix is back, no voice cracks, and only one self-induced bloody nose from a solely verbal argument hampering his thundering start to this week’s episode. He strikes a deal with Jack Barker, somehow saving his job and his ability to work after letting the plans for his and the other engineers skunk work become public.
The deal stated that Richard would get the box to Jack’s minimum specs to sell to Maleant, and then they could continue working on their algorithm. Imagine if your parents asked you to do chores before you could do something fun, but then don’t do the minimum amount of work possible because you’re a “nerd” who has “pride in their work” and “parents who are proud of them.” Fucking losers. Richard, Dinesh, and Gilfoyle, through many passive aggressive marks to each other and an unfortunately placed designer, realize the box’s full potential by almost tripling its processing speed. This causes the box to become too profitable and forces Jack to enter an agreement with Maleant, which gives them exclusive rights to the algorithm for 5 years (meaning Pied Piper can’t work on it). This is a lesson—never do more than you’re asked for, you nerd. Overachievers are geeds. This is the profitable route for the company to go, and therefore it gets support from the board. That is, until Gavin Belson acquires their competitors, which puts a valuation on a middle-out compression company, making Pied Piper’s algorithm much more profitable than the box. In the last scene of the episode, Laurie Bream is seen leaving the CEO chair open yet again after firing Jack Barker for insubordination, and thanks to Ehrlich and the effects of his horibong (horizontal bong?—bong number 7), letting people know that Pied Piper is not dead yet.