Cyclone

Written by Carl Capotorto & Erin Cressida Wilson
Directed by
Nicole Kassell

After a days-long bender, Richie bursts from his Greenwich home demanding the pool guy turn off the music, Buddy Holly's "Rave On."

Along for the ride is Ernst, Ingrid's ex from Devon and Richie's early days. Richie worries Devon -- missing since the disastrous double date with Hannibal -- is with Ingrid, and Ernst only fans the flames, speculating wildly about what the two women are doing together. He encourages Richie to indulge in a little adultery himself -- suggesting "the little blonde from the office, or the receptionist" as potential targets. Ernst encourages Richie to find Devon and "drag her back by the hair" if necessary.

At the Chelsea Hotel, Devon offers herself as a model for Ingrid's boyfriend, Paul. Alone with Devon, Paul tells her Ingrid isn't happy because "she wants to be conventional in an unconventional paradigm" and predicts Devon will end up hurting her friend more than he will.

Richie and Ernst arrive at American Century in a drug-fueled whirlwind. Richie dispatches Ernst to locate Devon and calls in Cece to have Leo bring the car around for him. After a moment of hesitation, she complies.

Andrea Zito arrives for her first day in the office. Richie interrupts her reunion with the other execs, demanding Andrea share her vision for modernizing the company. Among her changes is a redesign of ACR's logo, which, she points out, looks like a toilet bowl. Richie gets up abruptly, and asks for Heather. After he leaves, Andrea tells the group she's going to stop by David Bowie's rehearsal that afternoon to see if he'll help them with a Biafra benefit. She invites Zak to tag along.

Richie and Heather attempt to hook up in his office bathroom, but he can't complete the deed. Richie gives up and returns to his office where Zak is waiting to confront him about storming out of the meeting. He's surprised to see Heather emerge from the bathroom. "Coke dick," Richie says by way of explanation, then confides Devon has left him.

Julie calls Richie from the studio, complaining Kip doesn't like any of the 12 "hippie" guitarists they've brought in to audition; Richie needs to come down and straighten things out. When Richie advises Kip to pick somebody soon, or he'll rip Kip's head off his neck and put his own "fucking guitarist on top of it," Kip storms out.

Ernst arrives and Richie rushes out to meet him in the hallway. Ernst says he found Devon, and that she's "letting off a little steam." He claims Devon and Ingrid are really high and having sex with a couple of guys. He overheard them making plans to be at Max's Kansas City that evening, if Richie wants to go "retrieve" her then.

Andrea and Zak watch David Bowie's rehearsal. David is delighted to see Andrea, but mistakes Zak for her new boyfriend. Oblivious, Zak pitches the Biafra benefit right away, turning off the musician. He quietly agrees to dinner with Andrea, but stipulates it should be just the two of them.

That night, Richie and Ernst head to Max's in search of Devon. When Andy Warhol and his entourage arrive, Richie accuses Andy of hiding Devon from him. He shoves Andy to the ground, and the bouncer tosses Richie into the street. Ernst spots a gold Firebird parked outside of the club. Richie hotwires the car, and the two drive off.

Devon and Ingrid cuddle and talk about their lives. Devon admits she hears a creaking in their home in Greenwich; it's her, swinging from the rafters. Ingrid encourages her to move into the hotel, "shit on a canvas" and call it art if she has to. Devon starts to sob, feeling that she can't disrupt her children's lives to follow her dreams.

Richie and Ernst wake up in the stolen car the following morning. Spotting a Hasidic family passing by, Richie realizes he's missing Zak's daughter's bat mitzvah. They rush to the catering hall in Long Island, and Richie catches the party as it's ending. Richie tries to apologize to a less than thrilled Zak, but winds up insulting him instead. Unable to take anymore, Zak shoves his boss to the floor. "Go ruin your family," he shouts. "Oh wait, you did that already. And mine too."

Following the lead of a young man who makes off with the guitar from a music shop, Kip, who has also run off with a guitar, corners the guy in an alley and asks if he wants to be in a band.

Richie and Ernst return to Richie's home. When Ernst is unable to provide Richie with the sympathy and support he needs, he orders Ernst to leave. Richie finds that Devon has also returned home, and tells her he's done with drugs. "I want to fix this," he promises through his tears. "I love you so much." She pulls away from him when he mentions he was hanging out with Ernst. "I spend three days away, and I come home to this?" she asks. Richie starts screaming at Devon about being irresponsible, and she quickly backs down. When Richie heads off to take a shower, she packs her bags and leaves with the kids.

While staff cleans up after the Yankovich bat mitzvah, Zak watches in awe as the house band's lead singer delivers a soulful rendition of David Bowie's "Life on Mars?"

Richie confirms that Devon is gone when he finds her station wagon missing from the garage. Ernst, who never actually left, reassures Richie that he'll help him find Devon -- but first, he needs a hot dog from Nathan's -- he's starving. When Ernst turns towards the car, Richie sees that his friend is missing the back of skull. Ernst isn't really there ? he's a figment of Richie's drug-addled imagination.

Coney Island 1967. Richie, in the driver's seat of a red Firebird convertible, speeds down Surf Avenue, singing along with Ernst, Devon and Ingrid to "Rave On." Ernst insists he wants a hot dog from Nathan's, but Richie wants them to ride the Cyclone rollercoaster first. As Ernst stands up to join the two in the backseat, he shouts that Richie is passing the hot dog stand. Richie turns to look, swerving the car into oncoming traffic. A head-on collision with a truck leaves a pregnant Devon bleeding from between the legs, Ingrid unconscious, and Ernst dead in the road.

Richie sits in present day Coney Island, staring at the Cyclone and contemplating the mess he's made of his life.