Cowboy Bebop season 1, episode 8 recap – “Sad Clown A-Go-Go”

November 19, 2021
M.N. Miller 0
Netflix, Streaming Service, TV Recaps


Cowboy Bebop continues to perfect its unique blend of vicious action, dry humor, and twists that make episode 8 stand out.

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Cowboy Bebop continues to perfect its unique blend of vicious action, dry humor, and twists that make episode 8 stand out.

This recap of Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop season 1, episode 8, “Sad Clown A-Go-Go,” contains spoilers.

Read the review of season 1.

Cowboy Bebop season 1, episode 8 recap

LeFou Pierrot

Poor Vicious. He can’t get the job done himself, so he keeps hiring people to do his dirty work for him. Take, for instance, him breaking into some hybrid insane asylum/testing center to spring a killer named Pierrot. He’s a seven-foot Frenchman with a maniacal laugh and a taste for blood. They break him loose and send him Spike’s way. On Faye’s birthday.

Well, we do not know when her birthday is, but Jet is being her father figure. He takes her bowling over her objections to saying how boring it is. He gets her a cake with a single candle. She acts like she doesn’t like it, but she does. As they leave, Lefou is transported in the dark, lonely road with no one else around.

He laughs and opens up his trenchcoat — he has hundreds of guns, knives, hammers, axes, hatchets, and even explosives. The boys go into action while Faye is off in the background taking their Corgi, Eil, for a walk. They send a dozen bullets that all hit him, but he has a protective forcefield around him. All of the shots fall straight to the ground at his feet.

Talk about a cheat code.

They try to fend him off, but soon Jet and Faye become separated from Spike by a couple of burning cars. Pierrot has Spike on the ground and lifts them both floating in the air, choking him. Shortly after, Spike’s new best friend turns his arm into a flame thrower. His blue sports coat is now on fire. The only reason Spike is not suddenly killed is that the Corgi, Eil, comes up and barks at Pierrot that has him frozen in fear — the giant military-grade killing machine is afraid of dogs. This allows Faye to help stomp out the fire and for Jet to pick up Spike and bring him back to the ship. 

Thank God for Corgis.

Checking References

Jet calls an old friend to get some info on the assassin who is chasing them. He meets up with Woodcock, who has some bad news for Jet — Pierrot has no file, which is not good news. This means only one thing — someone with a lot of money and power scrubbed this man’s history clean. Only special forces, the ISSP, or the syndicate did this. And since they are only after Spike, that means Jet’s partner has been hiding something from him, says Woody.

So, when Jet approaches Spike about it, he doesn’t give him a chance to explain to tell him he used to be Fearless for the Syndicate. He assumes he is tight-lipped about his past because of the atrocities of seeing bad things as a good man as a member of special forces. Spike doesn’t correct him.

That Jet is such a trusting soul. Well, except for those mechanics. 

So, Jet comes up with a plan that Spike promptly ignores because this is his problem, and he doesn’t need their blood on his hands. Pierrot is now dressed up as a sad French clown (creepy) at an abandoned carnival. Spike manages to stab him in the leg and has him floating into the atmosphere, but he drops a half-dozen hand grenades that blow up as they hit the ground. Spike runs and dives out of the way, we think. Just after, the explosion somehow causes the entire Carnival to blow up and burst into flames. 

I have a feeling this place was shut down because of shoddy construction.


The plan is set in motion. Julia has made a side deal with Mao that they will kill Vicious, setting her free. The plan is for Santiago to bring Vicious in as a prisoner then take the elders out. Vicious has one request — that Santiago will send his guards home. Julis gives Vicious a kiss, she thinks for the last time, as she sends him on his way.

When presented to the elders, Vicious has his mouth taped up and is screaming with fear. It seems that Mao and Santiago have made it known he is to be double-crossed. The elders scorn the “boy” for thinking he could murder them. Mao, laughing with girlish glee and Santiago brimming with a smile from ear to ear, take this final laugh and swing their swords down, cutting the head of Vicious straight off. It rolls down the glossy cement floor and stops. Except, there was just one problem.

The ending

The head begins to flash back and forth sporadically — it’s the digital mask from “Dog Star Swing” from episode three. Vicious made the switch. He then promptly kills the guards, four of the elders, and stabs Mao in the stomach. He saves the head of the elders, Caliban (surprise, he is played, briefly, by the great John Noble), for last. He was savoring and taking his time with him because he always condescendingly calls him boy. As he is ready to leave, he sees Mao crawling across the floor, leaving a blood trail behind her. He turns her over, and while he is boasting, she gets the last laugh. 

“Tell Julia I’m sorry we didn’t finish the job,” she says while laughing. 

Poor Vicious looks heartbroken.

The episode ends with Vicious blood-stained in Santiago’s white suit, walking into this home, carrying Mao’s head. He tosses Mao’s head into the fire. They need to have one of those difficult conversations.

What did you think of Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop season 1, episode 8, “Sad Clown A-Go-Go,”? Let us know in the comments below!

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