Mayans MC continues with “Escorpión/Dzec”, and there’s a lot to like, even though with so much plot being churned through it’s difficult to really latch on to the story just yet.
You know that you’re dealing with a fucked-up slice of society when the drug-dealing biker gang are the nicest people in the story. Yet, here we are in “Escorpión/Dzec”, where innocent people are doused in boiling grease, children are kidnapped, and only the leather-clad wrong-‘uns seem to care about what an impending war between the cartels and a baby-snatching rebel faction might mean for the people caught in the middle.
As last week’s Mayans MC premiere suggested, things aren’t looking too good for Miguel Galindo’s (Danny Pino) wife, Emily (Sarah Bolger), or his son, Cristóbal, who at the start of “Escorpión/Dzec” was snatched by the masked-up rebels of Los Olvidados. Galindo, fuming, reckons he’ll get the nipper back without much fuss, but no such luck – Los Olvidados need him as leverage, because they’ve just torched Galindo’s heroin and filmed it. As the voiceover explains, “Our struggle is to take back what our grandfathers fought for — political and economic emancipation.”
Emily, naturally, doesn’t want Galindo to fight back – his advisor and family think otherwise. Turns out Galindo’s brother, also named Cristóbal, conveniently enough, was killed in a similar situation, rather than by pneumonia as his parents told everyone. Galindo’s father was being blackmailed out of business by a cartel, and chose to sacrifice the kiddo rather than bend to their wishes. And if Galindo doesn’t do the same, he’ll be showing weakness – which, in the world of Mayans MC, is a worse fate than losing a child.
And who better to track down the rebel baby-snatchers than the Mayans, who are already fed up with Adelita (Carla Baratta) for not giving them a head’s-up about the plan in the first place. Yet even with EZ’s (JD Pardo) magical photographic memory, the only lead they’re able to scare up is a food truck vendor whose music could be heard playing in the background of that brown-burning mission-statement video. If you were wondering how the grease I mentioned earlier factored into “Escorpión/Dzec”, now you know – it seems Mayans MC has a mandate to deliver at least once scene of torture per episode.
Things didn’t go too well for that vendor or his young son, who were burned to a crisp and dumped in the street with Los Olvidados flyers stuffed in their mouths. This is what retaliation looks like, I suppose, and you could tell by Adelita’s face that it isn’t what she had in mind. Galindo’s baby is, thus far, being well looked-after, which is probably why EZ feels confident enough late in the episode to tell Emily that he won’t let anything happen to her son. But their history is obviously going to complicate matters, especially now that Galindo is taking the situation into his own hands against her wishes, and clearly not giving her the full story of fathers and sons being torched and put on public display.
Elsewhere in “Escorpión/Dzec”, the Mayans were shown to be the altruistic types, slipping money to a heroin clinic hidden inside a dog shelter, and fretting about their responsibilities to the people they love and the class-divided community they inhabit. EZ is worried about Emily and her kid; Angel (Clayton Cardenas) about the rebels; and Coco (Richard Cabral) about his hooker mother and porn star sister. They’re wrapped up in the coming catastrophe, but they haven’t yet been consumed by the bizarre, repetitive logic of sacrificing family for respect and fairness for toughness. For now, they remain the heroes. Time will tell if they stay that way.