Silicon Valley Episode Four Review

Doesn’t it just make perfect sense for Peter Gregory to host a toga party. For a television show about people with varying levels of social dysfunction there doesn’t seem to be anything more perfect. This is a man whose cleverness far outpaces his ability to connect so of course he would take an idea from a classic movie about parties, put an incongruous musical act on the stage, then hire a group professional party conversationalists and just assume that with wine flowing everybody would have a great time. What’s ironic is that it seems like for the group of people invited to this party, despite the offense they might take to the idea of needing actresses that seem interested in them in order to hold a conversation, this was the perfect way to set it up.

Pied Piper is finally an incorporated, official looking company assuming that all the paperwork gets filled out to a T (or an Elrich). Vision, vision, vision that’s all anyone wants to talk with him about. Meanwhile Bighead over at Hooli has been just as useless as he was in the incubator, leading to him getting unassigned from Nucleus to… nowhere. He’s not fired, but he has nothing to do in the office. Luckily, he’s found a group of squatters up on the roof in the same situation as him. All of them just passing time waiting for their stock options to see a return, keeping them from quitting, preventing them from doing anything. And Jared feels a bit left out.

Unfortunately for Richard, a night of panicked drinking has resulted in paperwork being filed with the promise of making Elrich a board member for Pied Piper. Given Elrich’s attitude, and entire persona Richard realizes immediately that this is a mistake. This is Richard’s life now. Everyone has something to say to him, and none of it is remotely positive, at least in the short run. It seems like for every little decision he has to make, one miss-step and Pied Piper crashes, burns, the ashes blow away in the wind, a McDonald’s is erected on the grave of his parents, and his high school bully (because clearly this guy had a high school bully) is the general manager.


It’s difficult to decide which character has been the most entertaining through this show so far. Elrich dressing like chubby Steve Jobs after making a drunken promise is really funny. But Peter Gregory’s entrance to his toga party dressed like Caesar, thanking Florida for the introduction and then directing everyone to the bar in the back with a shorter line is absurdly hysterical. This is the guy everyone in the show is afraid of and respects for the money he has access to, while he interacts with everyone like a shy five year old. Elrich on the other hand is obnoxiously inclusive, selfish, has stupid facial hair, and begs you to like him by the end of every episode. Hallucinating the internet in the desert versus contemplating Burger King long enough to make over sixty million dollars.

In future episodes, I really hope that the process to build Pied Piper can speed up. Though every encounter in the show is funny, it can only go on so long before we start wondering where the plot is going. Especially since this episode felt a lot like a mesh between the first episode and the last, what with a party that has a famous performer and a lousy speech maker coupled with a frustrated encounter in the incubator that ends with Richard showing signs of minimal strength before immediately falling back into his original panicked self. Of course when Richard really panics, he REALLY panics. And it was heartwarming to see Elrich come in to help make sure he didn’t completely implode. Explode on the other hand…. he’s going to have a little trouble.

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