Bad Money
Silicon Valley | Season | Episode 3

Bad Money

TV-MA | 28 MIN

Written by Alec Berg
nnnnnDirected by Alec Berg

Richard delivers Gavin's takeover pitch to his Pied Piper buddies. "This is a good buy out," Richard tells them. "It's way better than what Gavin offered before." The offer has the team vesting in Hooli stock after only four years. The guys all say they won't work for Hooli -- even Jared, who describes Hooli as "an abusive spouse to me."

As Richard heads toward Hooli to accept the offer, a sports car pulls up in front of him and a slick guy emerges to introduce himself. "Russ Hanneman," he says, "pleasure to meet you." Russ offers to take him to "get beef."

At a coder conference, Gavin talks about the "good of humanity" on stage. Journalist Kara Swisher responds that it's easy for him to talk about such things "being a billionaire." Gavin says he's tired of the "bias against the leaders of our community," adding, "You know who else vilified a tiny minority of financiers and progressive thinkers called the Jews?" The room gasps.

While tending to the beef on a grill at a Japanese restaurant, Russ tells Richard why he's rich: He radio on the internet. Russ mentions being worth $1.2 billion -- and he wants to back Pied Piper. "Let's make me a billion more," he says.

Richard shows up at the Hacker Hostel and slams a check from Russ down on the table. It's for $5 million. Monica frantically storms in, immediately making it known she thinks the Russ deal is bad. "He's a boorish, pompous womanizing douchebag," Monica laments, "who got lucky 20 years ago and hasn't done anything since then." Richard is intent on taking Russ' money. Gavin and Laurie, separately, can't believe the news. "I feel very strongly," Laurie tells Monica, "that you should have prevented this."

Now that Pied Piper is funded, Jared goes over hiring details with Richard -- both Dinesh and Gilfoyle want 15 people each for their respective teams. After some prodding from Richard, Gilfoyle and Dinesh cut a handful of heads from their hiring asks, but Jared says they can only have three employees each. Gilfoyle and Dinesh immediately agree to the plan. "We're negotiating against each other," Dinesh tells Richard.

Russ shows up at the Hacker Hostel. "This guy f**ks," Russ says immediately of Jared while totally ignoring Erlich, who seems desperate for approval from the billionaire. During a meeting, Russ interrupts a couple times, saying he can't believe the way Richard talks and then loudly taking a phone call.

Gavin Belson strategies with his lawyers about the Pied Piper lawsuit, although he takes a break to welcome Jewish leaders to the Hooli campus in an attempt to make amends.

During a work session, Richard mentions a subscription revenue model for Pied Piper, and Russ jumps in, sharply advising his against producing revenue. "If you show revenue," Russ says, "people will ask how much and if will never be enough." Russ says they should be a "pure play," encouraging Pied Piper to grow value rather than revenue. Russ continues by saying that he'll be hands-off but will check in with them every other week. "He's the worst man in America," Dinesh says after Russ heads out, "and now he owns us."

Later, Russ meets the guys on a highway and points to a billboard above featuring a woman holding a guitar and emblazoned with the words: "I Am Pied Piper." Russ claims its a play for brand awareness -- that he's getting Pied Piper out there. Russ gives them their two-week check, but he's deducted his fees for the Pied Piper billboards and marketing, completed by other companies that he owns. Russ placed 15 of the billboards between Gavin's house and the Hooli office to drive the executive crazy.

"This is war," Gavin says upon seeing the "I Am Pied Piper" billboard. His litigation team advises Gavin to elevate Big Head, posturing that he was close to Richard when he created Pied Piper, thus Big Head must have been integral to the germination of the company. "So what you're saying is the mode praise and promotion we heap on this person," Gavin confirms, "the more it looks like Pied Piper was created here at Hooli."