In the fourth episode of Baccano!, Ladd is a billion times more terrifying and revolting than I could have ever guessed. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Baccano!
“Ladd Russo Enjoys Talking A Lot and Slaughtering A Lot”
- There is not one lie in this episode’s title, and now that I think about what I wrote regarding Ladd in the previous review, I’m realizing I was actually right about him. He is evil purely for the sake of it, and his stake in this story is to cause mayhem and suffering for no other reason than to cause it. And it’s fascinating to me to think of him in terms of the hero/villain dichotomy because Baccano! doesn’t have a clear antagonist yet, which is partly due to the fact that there is no singular main character in the story. So a character like Ladd just adds to the chaos, like a trickster god, because he can. There’s no motivation for his characterization aside from this, and I admit that’s also why he’s so scary.
- What little backstory we get in this episode (if you can even call it that!) involves Ladd and his uncle, Placido, who was robbed by none other than Isaac and Miria. Oh, and Jacuzzi stole from him in the past, too. OH MY GOD EVERYONE IS CONNECTED.
- It’s during this scene that Ladd demonstrates his affinity for violence, specifically the kind that involves ending life. He murders both of Placido’s associates in less than thirty seconds, all while Placido watches on with mild annoyance. Which, to me, implies that Ladd does this shit all the time and EVERYONE JUST EXPECTS HIM TO. He’s clearly never held responsible for his actions, though I suspect that wouldn’t actually inspire him to change his behavior, either. As far as I could tell, Ladd is nothing more than an assassin for his uncle, and he’s a necessary evil for the business.
- This is how we learn about Ladd’s reason to be on the train: to frighten the train company into paying Placido.
- So does that mean that Ladd’s group is merely nothing more than murderous men who enjoy killing other people? Like… what the hell, this is so disturbing to me. Of course, I thought that right before Ladd’s monologue in which he describes the perfect kill for him: the unsuspecting victim who believes they’re safe.
- Holy fuck, Ladd is SO AWFUL.
- We cut back to the train, and another theory of mine is disproven: the Lemures aren’t immortals. I mean, two of the guys in the black suits definitely die in this episode! So, these guys just support Master Huey, whoever the fuck he is??? I STILL DON’T GET IT.
- Look, I didn’t need the show to demonstrate to me that Ladd cares naught for human life, but the image of him carelessly stepping on the corpse of one of his associates was super fucked up.
- As was the extended “boxing” sequence. Oh man, I know it totally hits the trope square on the head, but I enjoy a villain who monologues his way through an evil deed. It’s so cheesy, but it works for someone as self-centered as Ladd.
- Czeslaw, who the fuck are you? How can you use Ladd and his men for your own needs???
- WHY WON’T CHANE SURVIVE THE NIGHT???
- Oh my god, I was so wrong about Elean and Nicholas. So they do know way more about Dallas Genoard than they were letting on! But like nearly everything else here, I cannot put the pieces together. There’s clearly a massive, complicated war going on between all the mob families; Dallas’s blackmail/taunting of Gustavo is a part of it, but then Elean heavily implies that the Gandor brothers “took care of” Dallas. So is he dead? For what reason? And how does Nicholas know about the immortals?
- I am positive that I will go the rest of my life without ever experiencing a character like the pairing of Isaac and Miria. It’s like they’ve read as many pulp/noir novels as humanly possible, but they can never quite get that world right, so they overact their way through life with a rigor that’s akin to poorly trained high school actors. They make me laugh every time they’re on the screen, and then I’m perplexed because HOW THE FUCK ARE THEY STILL ALIVE??? How did they rob 87 places in two years without being massacred? THEY’RE SO BAD. I mean, in this episode, they’re so completely involved in their own ridiculous plans for the future (SWIMMING ALL DAY? YOU’LL GET WRINKLED) that they don’t even realize that they’re dancing in the middle of the fucking street.
- Driven by Ennis with Szilard Quates as her passenger
- Who reveals that he’s at least 200 years old.
- And knew Maiza.
- WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON.
- WHAT THE FUCK, WHO ARE ALL THESE OLDER MEN.
- ARE THEY ALL 200 YEARS OLD
- OH MY GOD, IT’S SOME SECRET SYNDICATE WHO HAVE MOST LIKELY SPONSORED BARNES’ EXPERIMENTS TO CREATE AN IMMORTALITY ELIXIR.
- This also explains why Ennis was at Barnes’s place, who she was looking for, and why Barnes reacts with surprise when he comes back to life and sees Ennis standing over him. So when did he drink the elixir? What happened to the thugs who “killed him”?
- NO WHAT THE FUCK, WHAT WAS THAT RED-EYED THING IN THE WINDOW
- NO OH GOD ARE THERE REALLY MONSTERS. WHAT THE FUCK. NO, THIS ISN’T OKAY. TAKE IT BACK.
- TAKE IT BACK.
The video for Episode 4 can be downloaded here for $0.99.
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