Oh, Pioneers
Big Love (LWM) | Season 2 | Episode 12

Oh, Pioneers

TV-MA | 56 MIN

Directed by Julian Farino
Written by Eileen Myers and Dustin Lance Black and Mark V. Olsen & Will Scheffer

In council with a select group of UEB members, Bill reports that Alby has declared war against his family and abused privileges. His audience responds sympathetically so Bill advocates a course of action-remove Alby from power and reclaim his assets. At this, the group balks: "Our prophet is dying. We don't know what's going to happen to us. People are afraid." Just then, Alby enters and ejects Bill off the compound.

Margie, excited by the Pioneer Day party, prattles on about what to wear. Still worried about her father's failing health, and the sudden arrival of Joey's family, Nicki loses her patience and snaps at her.

Adaleen sneaks into Roman's bedroom and finds both the room and her husband unkempt. As Alby and Lura approach, Adaleen dashes into the closet. From there, she watches Lura administer drugs into the IV. "It's so close," says Lura tenderly to Alby. When the pair leaves, Adaleen checks the vial.

Outside of Pam's house, Margie breaks the news-she has no room in her schedule to be a surrogate. Desperate, Pam begins weeping on the sidewalk; Carl will leave her unless she has a family for him in heaven. Thrown, Margie impulsively agrees to have the baby.

As Ben works on the Home Plus Pioneer Day float, Sarah and Heather invite him to join them at LDS functions. When Ben refuses the offer, "No offense, I'm not interested in you Heather," Sarah tries to clarify. "We don't have to be victims of Mom and Dad's choices," she says, "They're a cult." Ben defends their parents, so Heather tries to tell him about Stockholm syndrome.

Having invited Ana over, Margie tells her she's to be Pam's surrogate. Elated to be reunited with her friend, Margie spills the beans: "My 'Phil' is your Bill. I hated not telling you." But Ana doesn't share in her excitement. Hyperventilating from the shock, she bolts.

Meeting again with the ATF agent who hunted the Greens, Bill suggests they check out Alby. Agent Connolly suspects a vendetta, but Bill assures her his story is legit and hands her a list of UEB members who'll back it up.

Nicki calls Barb to report that she knows Bill's been to the compound...just as Bill shows up at Barb's. As Bill and Barb watch Ben with his brothers, from the kitchen, Bill assures Barb he'll make things right with Ben: "I'll speak to him. He's got to respect you." Barb corrects him: "I don't want his respect, I want his love."

Ana returns to confront Margie: "Is this how you get wives?" Margie apologizes; it was meant to work out differently. Ana tells her it's too late-she's dating someone else. "You must know this was a betrayal," she adds. Margie tries to justify her actions: she so wanted her as a sister and a friend. Ana agrees that the other sister-wives are bossy and the two reconcile.

Nicki is called home from another night of Bingo losses by a call from Adaleen who has rescued Roman from the compound-and from Lura and Alby. Adaleen denounces Alby: "He will be our undoing, the Grant dynasty will come to an end." Adaleen begs to stay and offers cash for the inconvenience. She tries to explain away their recent rift, "What could I do? I had to honor my husband."

Lura and Alby stare at Roman's empty bed. "What are the chances he'll die on his own?" asks Alby, hopefully.

Having overheard Adaleen trying to park the Hummer, the family gathers at Nicki's to wait for the doctor's report. Diagnosing Roman as malnourished and dehydrated, he also informs them that the sedative Lura used has strict veterinary purposes. Still reeling from the snakes in her bed, Barb advocates taking Roman to the hospital, but Nicki and Margie disagree. As the wives tangle, the doctor takes Bill aside and tells him that Roman would be better off in a hospital. Adaleen approaches Bill: "You owe me this. You and your brother would have been sent up to the river if it wasn't for me." Rejoining his wives, Bill tells everyone that the doctor advised against further movement. He instructs them to keep Roman's whereabouts a secret for everyone's safety.

Bill runs to the basement to tell Joey the news: "It's like Haley's comet or Skylab landed in the back yard!" The two talk about the upcoming vote- thanks to the ATF investigation, Bill thinks he's swung enough votes to bring in an outside trustee. "This is our chance to get rid of the Grants forever," he gloats. Joey observes: "Imagine how different our lives would be if Roman had never come to power." Bill admits his first instinct was to smother Roman.

In the morning, Nicki heads to Barb's to report that Margie's new friend Ana is there-and she knows about their marriage. With the wives around her, Margie begins speaking about needing a calling and how surrogacy would fulfill that. When Barb interjects that their husband might not agree, Margie tells Ana their husband's name is Bill. The two share a giggle that confounds Barb.

Reading between the lines, Nicki confronts Margie: Margie may be desperate to achieve equality, but Ana's presence is not going to change a thing. "You're the youngest, the newest and shiniest-you don't get to have that and share equal power," lectures Nicki. She instructs Margie to keep Ana away while Roman is there, but Margie is holding one last card: "It so happens Bill dated Ana." Shocked, Nicki insists that's not their business - and orders her not to tell Barb.

The staff and customers of Home Plus gather to watch a Pioneer Day dance routine put on by a local troupe. Joey arrives to give Bill the results of the vote: "Yours was the name we heard." Already stretched thin at work and home, this was not what Bill expected and he demands a revote. Joey tells him to reconsider: Alby has already declared an emergency and filed a missing person's report for Roman. But Bill is adamant: "As long as I have Roman stuck in a bed at my house, I'm the one who decides the rules of this game."

Exiting their home, surrounded by flowers, candles and gifts, Alby and Lura are revered as if heads of state. They beam with pride and thank the crowd for their prayers. An aide tells Alby that Adaleen is still missing-and that Bill Henrickson has been voted in as trustee. Alby commands the entire community to assemble for a vote: "The board should reflect the wishes of the people."

Bedraggled and unshaved, Roman is up and walking. In the kitchen, he surprises Teenie, who sprints away. By the time Bill gets home, Roman is back in bed, demanding to return home. Bill assures him he's protected there and he needs to stay, so he can return "in triumph." Roman insists that Bill repent and confess to anything that put him in this position, but Bill chides, "The one you should be talking to is your son. He tried to kill you... How it must hurt to have your own son turn against you." Bill leaves, and then disconnects Nicki's phone line.

Lois arrives at the house to insist that Bill keep his trustee seat. Overhearing, Barb tells Lois that Bill wants to be free of it. But Lois has waited too long to stop playing kingmaker: "It's in his blood. You can't just choose your destiny." Concurring with his wife, Bill informs his mother, "We're charting a different course now." Still, Lois refuses to yield. "Don't be such a pansy," she scoffs before catching sight of Adaleen.

Barb excuses herself to answer the door, and discovers more trouble on her doorstep. This time it's Pam, inviting her over for a "kind of pre-insemination party." Caught unaware, Barb storms to Margie's and tells her she's not having a baby for the neighbors. When Barb suspects Ana's influence, Margie counters, "I want Bill to date her-they've already met." Too angry to continue, Barb leaves.

Catching Wanda alone, Lois hands her a gallon of anti-freeze and tells her to target Roman: "It's your chance to do something really important for this family." But Wanda resists, and rattles off a list of people she's already hurt for Lois: "You have no idea how hard I'm wrestling with my impulses now." Soothingly, Lois tells Wanda that means her conscience is talking to her.

Sarah and Heather tip toe into Roman's room to refill his water glass, and taunt him as he sleeps. "Am I young enough?" coos Sarah, prancing suggestively-until Nicki catches her. Livid, she demands Bill punish Sarah and ban Heather. When she pushes to return Roman to the compound, Bill breaks the news to Nicki: he's not going back; the Grants are finished. Worried now about her mother and herself, she tears into Bill, who remains unmoved: "You'd do anything for his love. He's not worthy of it."

As he heads out, Bill bumps into Barb in the backyard. She casually asks him about Ana. Bill plays dumb, so Barb re-jogs his memory, "You expressed interest in dating her." As Bill tries to pacify her, Barb sets him straight, "I don't want a fourth... The time won't ever be right. I'm telling you right now." When Bill interjects she's not the only voice in the house, Barb pulls out her trump card: "Oh by the way, Margene's having the neighbor's baby."

Bill storms to Margie and tells her that she's not carrying anyone else's baby. Furthermore her scheming about Ana has upset Barb. Margie tells him not to worry.

Sarah meets Ben in the parking lot to give him a lift back after he drops off the float. The tension between them is palpable. "I don't know who you are any more," laments Sarah. He remains firm against her arguments: "I believe with all my heart and soul, Sarah, that Dad is leading us in the right direction. We're pioneers too."

In Barb's kitchen preparing food, Adaleen shares some history- and advice: "I'm sixth wife, but I might as well be first... I never held Roman back." Confused, Barb questions what Nicki has told her, so Adaleen breaks it down for her: "You're powerless because you're the fearful, closeted wife of a polygamist."

As Bill makes breakfast for the kids, Joey gives him an update: the UEB has vanished; he can only locate three out of the seven necessary for a quorum. As they whisper, they hear Adaleen trying to sneak Roman out for a shave. Bill refuses to let him out of the house, so Adaleen and Nicki share the duty.

Upstairs, Roman interrogates his daughter "Who's responsible for my shooting? Bring me your cell phone now." But Nicki ignores his demands: "We're not on the compound." With Nicki holding the blade next to his neck, Roman says pointedly, "Such steady hands. Shame you weren't a boy."

At Scott's, Sarah insists they go all the way.

Alby calls Bill: Alby's been voted chairman. "The believers believe in me," he crows, demanding Weber gaming be returned. Once he's hung up, Barb and Nicki confront Bill. Nicki warns that Alby's rise will only cause mayhem. Furious that she's already sacrificed so much to be a part of Bill's family, Nicki challenges him to give something up for once. Barb backs her up. "You're not serving those you love. It's vengeance."

Bill tells Roman he's sending him back to the compound. "I knew you never had it in you to do me harm," goads Roman. Bill parries, "Wouldn't it be poetic if your reign ended as my grandfather's did? In a suspicious death, quiet and unseen." Bill informs the now cooperative Roman he holds the cards: in exchange for putting him back, Bill wants Roman's blessing on Weber; further, he tells Roman he was voted trustee, but he will refuse the position. The two discuss why Roman ran him off the compound. "I was just a boy," says Bill. "But look at you now," replies Roman, agreeing to Bill's terms.

Nicki calls her brother to tell him his reign is over-their father is heading home. Alby insists he's done nothing wrong.

Spotting Ana at Margie's again, Barb grabs Margie and stomps to Pam's. As Margie tries to explain to Pam why she can't have her baby, Barb steps in with the truth, "We're all ONE family." Barb is filled with pride and nerves as they head back; Margie seems awed and a little scared.

The extended family gathers in the backyard with the Embrys and the Schoenfelds to enjoy Pioneer Day. In the pantry, Ana and Bill quarrel, but end up in each other's arms.

"Boss lady outed us to the neighbors," Margie tells Nicky, as Ben overhears. Barb gives Bill the same news and lays down the law, "I'm moving forward with you... But I've got to be number one and that's it." The two share a kiss, and Barb agrees to Bill's request that she join the board of Weber gaming.

The authorities stop Joey, Adaleen and Roman outside of Roman's house. Alby has engineered his father's arrest for violating the Mann act: transporting women across state lines for immoral purposes.

Bill and Don enjoy Pioneer Days with their families. "You pulled it off," concedes Don. Ben pulls his mother in for a hug. Barb, Nicki and Margene share a laugh.