Yesterday Once More
Written by Terence Winter
Directed by Allen Coulter
In a grimy Times Square theater, a coked up Richie exuberantly takes in a screening of Enter the Dragon. Zak, Skip and Scott attempt to stall their meeting with the Polygram executives while they wait for Richie to make an appearance. His signature is the last one needed to close the buyout from Polygram.
Zak calls Devon at home and learns Richie "drank a quart of whiskey and trashed the fucking den" before disappearing the night before. She's far from worried about her husband; she tells Zak that Richie's "always fine. It's everyone around him that gets fucked."
Richie, dirty and bleeding, arrives at the American Century offices, where he shocks his partners by announcing that they won't be selling the company. The guys pull Richie into another office before he blows the deal, and Richie explains that he had an epiphany seeing the New York Dolls at the Mercer before it collapsed. Though Zak insists Richie is talking crazy, Richie refuses to back down, and insists they can cut costs and usher in the future of rock and roll. Zak tells Richie to go home to Devon, inciting Richie's wrath. A la Bruce Lee, Richie punches Zak in the nose and karate chops Scott in the face, then storms out to send Polygram packing.
Devon takes the kids out for breakfast, but finds herself lost in a memory about meeting Richie for the first time. She drives away from the restaurant and passes a "children at play" sign. She stops the car abruptly and turns around – she forgot the kids at the restaurant.
Richie meets with the A&R staff and lets them know he's firing everyone, effective immediately, but they have two weeks to earn their jobs back. He tasks the bewildered group with bringing in an act that's "new, fresh, fast and exciting," and encourages them to "think back to the first time you heard a song that made the hairs on the back of your neck stand up, that made you want to dance or fuck or kick somebody's ass."
Afterwards, Jamie finds Richie in his office to ask him what he thought of the Nasty Bits' demo. He agrees they have something, despite being rough around the edges. Jamie wants to be their A&R rep, but Richie, who knows that Jamie took the tape from his inbox, isn't willing to credit her with their discovery. After agreeing to Jamie's point that he probably wouldn't have listened to the tape if she hadn't given it to him, Richie tells her to set up a showcase for the band with Julie. Jamie then finds Heather at the reception desk and whispers to her, "If you ever rat me out again to Richie, I'll kick you in the fucking cunt."
At home, Devon takes pictures of Richie's den destruction. She takes a call from an officer at the police impound, who explains that they found Richie's car a half-block from the rubble of the Mercer Arts Center. The officer asks Devon if Richie would have any reason to attend a rock concert, as there are people unaccounted for.
A man gives Moira and Karen, Zak's wife and teenage daughter, a tour of the banquet hall where they plan to host Karen's bat mitzvah. Zak arrives late, his broken nose heavily bandaged. Moira demands to know what happened, so Zak lies and says he was rear-ended on his way over. He joins the tour and watches in quiet horror as the price tag for the event goes up with every extra add-on. Unable to tell them what happened at work, Zak agrees to a party he can no longer afford.
Devon finds Richie alive and well at his New York apartment, and berates him for not calling to tell her that he was all right. She confronts him about an empty cocaine packet on the coffee table, and Richie tries to explain why he fell off the wagon. They're interrupted by a visit from Det. Voehel; Richie fears that it's about Buck Rogers. Instead, Voehel wants to know about Richie's connection to Maury Gold. A low-ranking bookie to whom Gold owed a large sum of money was recently found dead, and they believe that gangster Corrado Galasso was hired by Gold to murder him. Richie plays dumb about Gold and Galasso, and Voehel asks him to call should he remember anything pertinent.
After the detective leaves, Richie breaks down in tears, telling Devon that he "fucked up" and is a "bad person." While Devon attempts to console him, she recalls an earlier time in their relationship. Richie and Devon, now boyfriend and girlfriend, hang out with Ingrid and her boyfriend Ernst at the Silver Factory. While there, Devon finally agrees to do a screen test for Andy Warhol -- but only after Richie encourages her.
The Nasty Bits practice at a restaurant supply warehouse while Julie watches in horror. "This is the band Richie wants to see?" he asks Jamie, who explains both she and Richie think the band has something. He sends her out for coffee, then instructs the Bits to learn a Kinks song for their showcase if they want to get signed.
Unable to sleep, Zak gets out of bed and goes into his garage. With his car running, Zak shakes out a handful of pills and contemplates them for a beat before throwing them back in their bottle. He turns off the engine and takes a wrench to his taillight.
Devon leads Richie to bed and tries to engage him in sex, but Richie gently tells her he just wants to sleep. Alone again, Devon reflects on another moment later in their relationship, shortly after she got pregnant with their first child. She was once excited to move out of the city, joking to Richie, Ingrid and Ernst that she planned to bake bread and braid her armpit hair in their new country home.
Later that night, Devon wakes up alone in the apartment. Richie, package in hand, knocks on Lester Grimes door in the South Bronx. "We gotta talk," he tells the former singer.