‘Barry’ Season 4, Episode 4 Recap & Ending, Explained: What Influenced Sally’s Crazy Decision?


After a somewhat mellow but still anxiety-inducing start to “Barry” Season 4, last week’s episode took things into high gear with a cameo from director Guillermo del Toro, whose character was orchestrating Barry’s assassination attempt. That subplot momentarily went on the back burner to focus on the Vanity Fair journalist, Lon, who was trying to piece together Barry and Cousineau’s story by interviewing everyone he got his hands on. When he reached Jim Moss, he was tortured to such an insane extent that he began to speak solely in German, thereby canceling his chances of publishing the interview. As for Barry, he spent the entirety of the episode trying to broker a deal with the Feds, which would involve him taking Sally to a different location and living out their lives there. Sally had no idea about this and was busy figuring out her career as an acting coach. However, Barry’s plan went up in flames when Toro’s men tried to kill him in jail (thereby leading to Fred Armisen’s cameo) and paved the way for his untimely escape.

Spoilers Alert

Sally Tries To Upstage Kristen

Episode 4 of “Barry” Season 4 begins with S.W.A.T. helicopters looking for the escaped Barry around the jail, NoHo Hank’s new lair, and the set where Sally’s student, Kristen, is working. The Warden beats the living hell out of Fuches because he assumes he is the one who smuggled in the assassins to kill the Feds and orchestrated Barry’s escape. He doesn’t assume that the assassins were there to kill Barry because, as far as he knows, Fuches is Barry’s friend. Unaware of Barry’s escape, Tom Posorro and Leo Cousineau take Gene to his cabin in Big Bear so that he doesn’t talk to the press again. Gene exposes his hypocrisy yet again by asking Leo if he can order some fancy coffee there instead of being embarrassed about the fact that he has used Janice’s death to get his 15 minutes of fame. This is followed by a hilarious interaction between Krauss and Jim, which is simply there to showcase the ineptitude of the L.A.P.D. as they can’t even bring their cars to a stop. So, catching an escaped convict is a pipedream for them.

NoHo Hank, who is aware of Barry’s escape, chooses to focus on the party they’re throwing for their henchmen because that’s what Cristobal wants to do at the moment. And as Hank pretends to be happy for Cristobal, we get one of the funniest and most relevant scenes in modern entertainment. Sally assists Kristen, who is in a suit that’s quite similar to a lot of costumes made for women in blockbusters nowadays, on the set of “Mega Girls,” which is being directed by Sian Heder.

Sian is playing herself and making a mockery out of the ongoing trend of hiring small-time indie directors who have made it big during awards season (or gained cult popularity) and are being pushed to do VFX and CGI-heavy “blockbusters” that are micromanaged to hell by studios. Why do studios do that? Because they want the illusion of authenticity that comes with the name of the director but none of their perspective or flavor. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is very famous for doing that, starting from James Gunn to Chloé Zhao, and it’s becoming very clear with each project that if you don’t let the director direct, then the final product is going to be a soulless mess. Coming back to the episode itself, while Cousineau prepares to face Barry and Fuches continues to get beaten up, Sally tries to butter up Sian Heder by upstaging Kristen under the garb of helping her prepare for her performance. I’d like to say that Sally has reached the lowest of lows. However, this bit of desperation is nothing in comparison to what she does at the end of this episode.

Sally Learns About Barry’s Escape

We see a S.W.A.T. unit hitting a Dave and Buster’s outlet, where Hank and Cristobal had organized a meeting. Seeing them go ballistic on a bunch of random people who are there watching T.V. just shows how thick-headed they are. It speaks to the fact that they are psychopaths who have been tasked with taking care of the law and order of the country, and if that’s not weird, I don’t know what is. Anyway, as Jim sees all this from afar, the episode goes to Hank, who takes Cristobal and some of the men in their team to the silo where all the sand is stored. As they appreciate it, Hank walks out and asks Cristobal to come with him. Cristobal doesn’t follow Hank immediately and hangs back for a few seconds, which leads to catastrophe because a sinkhole is created, thereby causing all the men to drown in the sand.

As Cristobal is about to die, Hank rescues him and reveals that he has done it on purpose for his Chechen bosses, Andrei and Batir. Hank didn’t want Cristobal to die with the rest, obviously. He triggered the sinkhole while assuming that Cristobal was right behind him. But when he realized he wasn’t, he went back to save him because he loved Cristobal. However, as Cristobal realizes that Hank is still loyal to his people instead of working towards a future around their sand mining business, he is clearly heartbroken. The episode briefly returns to the jail to prove the point that all the inmates are under the impression that Fuches is such a loyal friend of Barry’s that he has taken all that beating and still hasn’t given up Barry’s whereabouts or explained how and why he killed all those F.B.I. agents. We, the audience, know that that’s not the case at all, and Fuches is only guilty of asking NoHo Hank to help him out. Everyone else is oblivious. When Fuches realizes that this is the case and he is being perceived as his gangster persona, “The Raven,” his attitude begins to change. Is he going to make the inmates rally behind him? He’ll surely try, but as soon as the inmates find out that it’s all a ruse, there’s a good chance Fuches will get another round of blows (and it’ll be hilarious).

Talking about geriatric idiots, we see that Cousineau has passed out with his gun in his lap while waiting for Barry to arrive. As soon as he realizes someone is at the door, he mindlessly shoots in that direction, thereby unknowingly injuring his son. The kicker here is that Leo was there to deliver the coffee Gene was crying about, despite scoffing at him earlier. If Leo bleeds out at Gene’s doorstep, it’s going to be cruel but weirdly poetic because Gene has never treasured these relationships. That said, he doesn’t have the courage to be upfront about his lack of empathy. So, his own son dying by his hand is apt.

Talking about killing things they love, Sally rejects the offer to get a fat sum of money for being Kristen’s acting coach. Rejecting that also means rejecting the chance to rebuild her career after the whole C-word video. But Sally clearly doesn’t want all that. It’s unclear why. I think she doesn’t want to play second fiddle to Kristen, and she wants the entirety of the spotlight, which makes her decision after learning about Barry’s escape seem all the more bizarre.

Barry, Sally, And Their Son Living In A Remote Place Was Real Or Fictional?

Before getting to Sally, though, we get a harrowing scene involving Hank and Cristobal. So, it’s apparent that Hank has sided with Batir and Andrei because they wouldn’t have allowed Hank and Cristobal’s business to thrive. Now, with Batir and Andrei’s blessing, Hank can rule over Los Angeles without any kind of hindrance. Cristobal is broken up about the way Hank has betrayed him, and he says that he wants to break up. Hank keeps getting more and more anxious, and he keeps repeating that Cristobal can’t leave because he knows too much. And he is obviously not wrong. Cristobal is too deep into this mess to check out without any consequences. When Cristobal gets to his car to drive off, Hank tries his best to convince him not to do so because he knows what’s going to happen next. When Cristobal still refuses to listen to Hank, he walks into his house and starts to compose himself. A Chechen soldier enters and reveals that Cristobal has been killed. Instead of reacting too loudly, since he is a cold-hearted mob boss now, Hank simply walks off, thereby cementing the fact that Hank’s transformation is complete.

At the end of episode 4 of “Barry” Season 4, we see Jim waiting outside Sally’s apartment. Something about Jim’s framing made it seem like Barry was in the backseat of his car and was about to kill Jim. That would’ve made sense because, technically, Jim is the reason for Barry’s current predicament. But Barry is clearly trying to start afresh, and he directly meets Sally, who asks him if they can go. Barry is surprised, and so are we, because why would Sally decide to do that of all the things in the world? However, there’s more. Presumably, after a time jump, we see that Barry and Sally are living in a remote place in the desert. They have a son called John, and he is fighting with a kid called Travis because he doesn’t play “Call of Duty” (which hints at the fact that Barry doesn’t want John to know about warfare even virtually). As John takes a can of bear to tend to his bruises, Barry goes after him to help him while Sally hangs back at the countertop. It is truly as peculiar as it sounds, and I don’t know if this is one of Barry’s imaginations or what.

If we go back to the first three episodes of “Barry” Season 4, we’ll see a similarity between the scenes of Barry’s memories blending with his dreams about his future with Sally and the ending of today’s episode. To be specific, while reminiscing about meeting Fuches as a child, he dreamt about growing old with Sally and then attending their son’s or daughter’s wedding. So, going by that theory, what we see at the end of this episode can totally be a dream. That said, Bill Hader and his team have a habit of subverting expectations by conditioning us to expect something to be a dream and then revealing that it’s actually happening. For example, they spent the entirety of “Barry” Season 1 showing Barry’s dreams of living a quaint life with Sally. So, when the final episode of Season 1 began at Cousineau’s cabin, it seemed like another one of Barry’s dreams. When the illusion didn’t break and the season ended with Janice’s death, it actually became evident that all that was happening for real. Therefore, going by that theory, the final moments of today’s episode can be non-fictional.

That brings us to the question: why did Sally decide to go with Barry? Well, it has been shown multiple times that Sally’s experience with Sam has totally warped her idea of healthy relationships. She is drawn to abusive, violent people, which is why she still sees Barry as her “safe space.” In addition to that, she probably thinks that Barry loves her selflessly and refuses to see that Barry is doing what he is doing because he has hit the lowest of lows and needs someone to lean on. It also seems that Sally has exhausted her love for the entertainment business, and she knows that there’s no way of redeeming herself. Hence, she has chosen domestic life. Now, if all this is fictional, it won’t be a big deal. If this is true, then there’s clearly been a time jump of 8 to 10 years. How have Barry and Sally managed to stay under the radar? Is this part of Barry’s deal with the F.B.I.? Well, we’ll have to wait until next week to know the answers.

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Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit loves to write about movies, television shows, short films, and basically anything that emerges from the world of entertainment. He occasionally talks to people, and judges them on the basis of their love for Edgar Wright, Ryan Gosling, Keanu Reeves, and the best television series ever made, Dark.

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