EW Community TV Show Episode Guides and Recaps from EW's Community

'Tyrant' fan recap: Mistrust and confusion

Season 2 | Episode 9 | “Inside Men and Outside Women” | Aired Aug 11, 2015

Tonight’s Tyrant was a doozy. From my perspective, it might have been the most MA-rated episode since the pilot. There was a moment in particular that was extremely hard to watch; the only mercy was that it was very quick. But still, it’s a tough image to get out of your head.

If I had to be a little critical, I’d say that perhaps the Hamlet level Jamal is at right now got a little too hammy when he started drawing a heart on the window with his hand as if he’s a serial killer (and perhaps he does fit the description, since he’s killed so many people, including family members). That was weird, as was him giving Khalil his life story. Let’s get into that, actually.

How come Jamal automatically thinks he can trust Khalil? By that token, how come every person Jamal comes in contact with eventually ends up dead? Jamal has a serious pattern of thinking that people are always going to be perfect, and then one time they slip up and show that they’re human like him, so he thinks he’s got to off them. It’s like he always wants other people to save him—probably because he thinks they have their lives held together better than he does.

What Jamal needs to realize is that everyone has their own crosses to bear; they can’t carry theirs and his without some of his support. Take, for instance, Rami. He’s only known Rami for a few weeks, and at first, he gave himself the idea that Rami was some idealistic version of himself. Granted, Rami is one of the few characters in this show who does have his life together, has morals, and is pretty amazing all around. But Rami is still a person who has to make tough decisions in his job. If that includes calling Khalil without Jamal’s consent in order to get the best result, then so be it. But Jamal seems to forget that he himself brought Rami into the palace. He practically begged for him to come. And now that he’s doing his job to help Jamal keep the country together, Jamal is going to turn to that tattletale of a military officer and say Rami should be killed? Come on, son.

So now he’s turned his back on Rami for superficial and, let’s face it, xenophobic reasons. Jamal thinks no one will miss Ma’an? Do you want your country to still exist, Jamal? Instead of heeding Rami’s advice, Jamal has turned to a complete stranger. Thankfully (sort of), that stranger is his brother, but once again, Jamal is doing what he always does—he creates an idyllic version of a stranger and then, once he gets to know that person and realizes that they are not without flaw, he decides they should be killed. What a rude awakening Jamal is going to get when he realizes his brother has been Khalil the whole time.

Khalil/Bassam isn’t getting out of this recap unscathed either. How come Bassam can’t use another voice when speaking to Jamal? I know Bassam’s “Middle Eastern” voice is awful, so I’m not even asking him to use that because it just comes off as offensive. But Adam Rayner, the actor who plays Bassam, is British. How come Rayner’s real accent wasn’t used as Bassam’s cover? Seeing how quite a few of Ma’an and Abuddin’s people seem to have a close relatoinship with Britain (Rami studying there, Ahmed wanting to escape there), it would make sense that a British-born or British-taught man could come to Ma’an to lead a resistance. Oh well.

Bassam’s voice isn’t the only thing that was questionable. Bassam’s expectation that Sammy will just welcome him back wholeheartedly is funny in a “that’s so sad” way. Sammy has a lot of reason to be mad with his father; his father lied to them all, not to mention whatever gripes Sammy carried from childhood. But Sammy was quickly shaken to his core when the Caliphate (after torturing and killing Munir to get his info) makes a surprise attack on the resistance. Sammy’s friend, who sadly thinks Sammy’s straight, is able to save him through the whole fight, but right as she gets out of their hiding place to see if the coast is clear, she gets shot multiple times, dropping dead in front of Sammy. I’m surprised Sammy didn’t throw up right then out of sheer panic.

That whole battle was probably one of the best Saving Private Ryan moments I’ve seen in the show. And by “best,” I mean “nicely shot and staged with minimal talking,” but I also mean “intensely traumatizing.” Kasim watched his brother Munir get tortured, then killed, for helping Bassam. Right afterward, he’s brought along to fight the resistance—only to turn his gun on Daliyah. He lets her get away, but Ihab’s anger at him for not killing his father’s wife, combined with his brother’s death, is too much. “I beg God for forgiveness,” he says before turning the gun on himself. It was gruesome, and was only made more harrowing by the fact that there was no ceremonious moment afterward. It’s all war.

Sammy, now hiding out with some other survivors, tells Molly via phone that he’s going to see this war through, leaving Molly in a state of shock. However, she was in a state of shock before; Bassam called her the day before, and she let him have it. I say he deserved it. But she does tell him (after Bassam calls her frantically when he’s unable to find Sammy) that 1) he’s safe and 2) she doesn’t wish Bassam was dead after all. But does she still think he’s a horrible person?

Writing about Molly’s reading of Bassam reminds me how she read “Simmons.” I write quotes around his name because IMDb states his name is “Timmons,” but I clearly heard “Simmons” when he was introduced. And IMDb didn’t have this information before, when I was doing my research; I’m doing the best I can here. Either way, Simmons/Timmons is a creep, and I’m glad Molly told him as much, but in a much kinder way. She told him to go home, that he’s trying too hard, to quit liking her, and that he’s not family so he doesn’t need to be there being weird. She didn’t say “being weird,” but let’s not act like she wasn’t thinking it. We might not see him next week, but he’ll always be Creepy Simmons to me.

Speaking of creepy, let’s rewind to when Jamal was creepily pouring his heart out to Bassam/Khalil while watching Nusrat and Rami talk on the bench outside. WTF, Jamal? We know you’re certifiable, but you don’t have to be that much of the Joker, or Hannibal Lecter, or whoever he was channeling. I feel like there must have been more of Jamal’s attitude toward Rami and Nusrat together that was cut out of the episode, since there’s another picture I have that didn’t happen in this episode:

 (l-r) Ashraf Barhom as Jamal, Moran Atias as Leila. CR: Adrienn Szabo'/FX

I wonder what this conversation was about. Whatever happened, I’m sure it was creepy.

Last, can we give a big hug to Ahmed? All he wants to do is be married to Nusrat, even if that means abdicating his title or getting disowned. Can he and Nusrat have a happy ending? Can Rami go back to being a UN peacekeeper? Can some of the most stable people on the show get the happiness they deserve? Also, can we also give a high-five to Rami’s No. 1, who backed him up in front of Jamal? Good job, sir.

I nearly forgot: It was Leila who gave Rami Khalil’s phone number. Her butt is now on the line too. Let’s have a prayer circle for her and Rami, since I don’t know how they’re going to get out of this jam.

What did you think of tonight’s episode? Give your opinions below!

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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