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'Tyrant' fan recap: The battle of Ahmed vs. Rami begins!

Season 2 | Episode 6 | “The Other Brother” | Aired July 21, 2015

So the battle between brothers that’s been alluded to is finally about to begin on Tyrant! Ahmed now knows of Rami’s existence, and not only does Rami have the love of Jamal backing him up in this already one-sided war for approval, but Rami also has the eye of Nusrat, someone he should probably stay away from when it comes to Ahmed’s sanity. Ahmed has already killed someone once; I’m sure he’ll perfect his killing game in time enough to test Ahmed.

That’s not to say that I’m against Nusrat and Rami getting together. I don’t condone adultery, but poor Nusrat needs some happiness in her life, right? Why not go against marriage vows? When you’re in a family that kills its own, why not bend a couple more sacred rules to meet your own ends? Ahmed is a nice guy and all, but Rami—well, just look at him. Not only does he cut a fine figure, but he’s accomplished—much more accomplished than Ahmed, who was just born into power and money. Of course Nusrat’s going to go for someone who’s like Rami.

But at the same time, I’m feeling for the angst Ahmed’s about to have. His ignorance to the glances between his wife and his stepbrother is his final moment of bliss as an Al-Fayeed. Rami threatening his place in the dynasty is one thing, but Rami threatening his manhood just by being a part of the family? Yikes. Nusrat clearly thinks Rami is more of a man than her husband, and with that sentiment, she and Jamal would actually find one thing they agree on. Ahmed’s impending hellscape that will become his martial life will consist of him realizing that without the Al-Fayeed title and power, he’d be just a dude trying to make it like every other dude (and dudette) who’s been passed over (or about to be passed over) for that shinier, prettier object.

Even with the power, he’s just “that dude,” to be honest. Soon, Ahmed will be like a lot of us, thinking “What does he/she have that I don’t have?” Don’t act like you haven’t been in this position before, reader. I know I’m not writing in a vacuum. Let’s all pour some out for Ahmed, who’s about to realize that his power and name mean nothing, and that love don’t love nobody.

Ahmed’s incoming existential pity party is just the tip of the iceberg of developments on this show. It’s obvious this far in the recap that Rami returns, but how he returns is really interesting. Like most things in the Al-Fayeed family, his re-entry into the show is jump-started by a death. Uncle Tariq’s death, to be exact.

Did I think Jamal was actually going to kill Tariq? I suspected it, but I honestly thought he’d stay around until the end of the season. Could I have imagined Jamal would cut his uncle down so savagely, and in his presidential office? Nope. I thought Jamal liked to kill in private, far from his palace—e.g., in dungeons and street alleys and hotel rooms. But after the Chinese cut their deal with Abuddin after the gassing and failure to secure the borders, Jamal felt he needed to take out the source of his problems in any way possible (and in any place that revenge might take place). Now how is Ahmed, who walked in on his father going to town on Tariq’s face, going to come to terms with this? He’s just gotten used to the fact his father “killed” Bassam! Suffice it to say, Ahmed is not feeling his father right now, especially after washing his uncle’s blood off his face.

Almost seemingly to spite Jamal (and because Sammy put the guilt trip on him), Ahmed helps Sammy find out where Abdul is. By the way, Sammy doesn’t listen to his mother and has renounced his father to get his millions of dollars. Sammy might not have any morals, even if I agree with his anger toward Bassam for dragging them there in the first place. Also, by the way, Molly doesn’t ever put her foot down. Why won’t she ever say, “You might think you’re grown, but you’re still in my house!” or something to that effect? Just for once, be less understanding, Molly; Sammy doesn’t have enough sense to run free and be responsible. Emma does, though, but we seen nothing of her in this episode. Not even Molly calling home to check on her.

Unfortunately for Abdul, he was hiding out in a nightclub with several eight other men when Ma’an got attacked. Thanks to Ahmed (who knew Abdul was gay and didn’t care), Sammy finds a guy Abdul was in contact with, a person who runs what seems to be a safe house for persecuted gay men. Several men are praying for the well-being of the Ma’an Nine, which unfortunately includes Abdul. Being that the men are gay, it’s presumed by Abdul’s acquaintance that not many would care about their deaths except for those who accept them as they are. But Sammy is determined to find Abdul, even if it means spending his dad’s death money.

As you can assume, Tariq’s death means Abuddin is now hiring! A new general needs to take Tariq’s place, and Amira has just the person in mind. However, Leila is against it. But Amira finally does something useful and succinctly brings Leila down to size; she might not like Amira or the fact that Jamal has another son, but, doggone it, this son is the only person who can right the sinking ship that is the Al-Fayeed family. He’s seemingly the only one of them with a good head on his shoulders and the morals of a decent human being.

After Amira appeals to the self-preserving side of Leila, Leila does go visit Rami, who is about to leave for his UN peacekeeping position. Rami wisely turns her down, but says something that sounds seemingly similar to Bassam: He’s running from the place he called home because of his personal feelings. However, while Bassam needed to see death (and kill people) to realize he’s got to save his home, all it takes for Rami is a stern talking-to from Leila, who lays some deep ancestral guilt on him. He’s of Abuddin and Ma’an, and running away won’t help save his grandmother’s people. His grandmother is the only family he has left, so I’d believe he only signed on to the title of the Al-Fayeed’s general because of his love for her.

Meanwhile, back in Ma’an, the Army of the Caliphate is trying to endear themselves to the scared, beleaguered people by giving them higher wages. But that’s not what Ahmos cares about; all he wants is his wife, Daliyah (the one who was going to bring back solar power), back home. He tries to give Ihab all the money he owns, but Ihab doesn’t budge, saying that Daliyah is being retrained in the right way to be a Muslim wife.

Quick sidebar: Unlike last season, I’m very glad the show is making it clear that there’s a concrete delineation between fanaticism and extremism versus the original, peaceful intent of Islam. This season seems more intent on showing shades of gray. I just hope they keep doing more of this.

Poor Daliyah is being harassed by that weird wife of the Caliphate leader, who, as Daliyah said in more coarse terms, did come all the way from America just to partake in wild sex games. If you wanted a threesome, there are plenty of folks in America willing to engage in that behavior, lady! Things get worse for Daliyah when the lady’s weird husband comes back and immediately tries to have sex with her. Thankfully, her personal hell is interrupted by gunfire. The resistance of the resistance, led by Bassam and Ahmos (and Ahmos’ non-radicalized son Munir, who’s still drafted as a Caliphate army member) have come to rescue the captured!

Unfortunately, Ahmos tells Munir to stay behind with the Caliphate. Why? Ahmos was saying that they trust Munir, but do they? He’s just a soldier, not a high-ranking officer who can bend the leader’s ear! Even worse, Ahmos gets killed! I knew Bassam’s presence in that family meant death!

Now Bassam has this poor man’s honor on his shoulders and inherits an army of fighters. Halima (the photographer from a few episodes ago) says Bassam Al-Fayeed made her hope once, and now Halil is making her hope again. Bassam gets his “Captain Abuddin” swagger on, but shouldn’t Halima know what Bassam looks like, seeing how she followed the Al-Fayeed regime (in order to topple it)? Shouldn’t a lot more people know what he looks like?

These questions can be answered in the comments section below. So go for it!

Tyrant airs Tuesdays at 10/9C on FX.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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