When the 7th episode begins, Barney (Russell Dykstra) packs up the kids and prepares to go for a drive. They begin to pull out of the drive and are immediately stopped by Nicole (Kate Box) and Cleaver (Richard Roxburgh). Cleaver stays with Barney and attempts to comfort him. Barney admits he sometimes wishes the balloon would’ve kept going and never landed. Cleaver heads to the courthouse and prepares for his upcoming trial. In the bathroom, he overhears Judge Cowper (Barry Otto) singing about his love for capital punishment. Once Cowper emerges from the bathroom stall, he is nearly naked and obviously senile. Cleaver’s client enters moment later and expresses his concerns about his first trial. The trial ends and Cleaver’s client receives 4 years.
Afterwards, Cleaver heads outside and encounters the journalist, Caitlin Farquhar (Sara Wiseman). While Caitlin’s cameraman covertly switches on his camera, Cleaver ridicules the judge and the judicial system. Meanwhile, Wendy (Caroline Brazier) sits down with Jack (Tasma Walton) and the pair discusses their future together. They contemplate the move to an island and Jack insists Cleaver is holding Wendy back from change. Cleaver meets up with David Potter (Matt Day) and dinner and a drink. Their conversation is awkward and they admit they have nothing in common, before they separate. Next, Nicole receives a card from Bevan (Ewen Leslie) and is guided to a romantic venue. Bevan expresses his love for Nicole and hands over a ring, while proposing. Nicole quickly accepts the proposal. Cleaver heads home and discovers Jack and Wendy in the bathroom together.
Cleaver eventually gets into the bathroom and learns Wendy is heading to the theatre with Jack. Afterwards, Cleaver and Wendy go for a run. Cleaver barely manages to keep up and winds up getting a taxi to make it home. Once he arrives, he finds everyone sitting around the kitchen table laughing. He is immediately shown the video recorded by Caitlin earlier in the episode. With the video going viral, Cleaver is brought in and forced to meet with the bar. Despite being punished less harshly for worse crimes in the past, Cleaver is disbarred from practicing law. While Cleaver’s life continues downward, Jane (Sonia Todd) continues enhancing her stardom with another appearance on Cal’s (Damien Garvey). This time, Jane reveals some of Cleaver’s crimes as a young boy, such as trying to set the school on fire. The pair quick becomes flirty and Cal heads to a commercial. They head backstage and get frisky.
Meanwhile, Nicole gets a call from the journalist and learns about Cleaver’s disbarment. The journalist convinces Nicole to give up access to Cleaver in exchange for the video of Barney talking about her during the recording of Australian Story. Cleaver returns home and finds his family chatting behind his back once more. He seeks privacy in his tiny room, but is confronted by Jack, who asks when he is going to be moving out. They argue and Jack goes on her way. Cleaver speaks with Fuzz (Keegan Joyce) and asks if he believes he should move out. Fuzz admits it is somewhat weird having him around. Cleaver also discover Fuzz has been messing around with Melissa (Adrienne Pickering). Cleaver doesn’t like the ideal and goes ballistic. After calling his family nothing but animals, Cleaver meets up with Nicole and chats about his future.
Nicole announces her upcoming marriage to Buster, aka Bevan, before she leaves and ushers Caitlin inside. Cleaver learns about his sister’s appearances on Cal’s show and immediately vows to take action. He gives an interview outside and announces his intention to run for Senate, while admitting he has no plans and no ideas, but remains adamant he’ll collect more votes than Jane. Nicole visits Barney and they watch the interview, while Barney confirms he’ll never get any of the money Cleaver owes. Nicole also tells Barney about her upcoming marriage. Barney seems fine with the idea, but is surprised Bevan forgave her. Meanwhile, Cleaver heads to an employment agency and attempts to acquire a job. Unfortunately, his disbarment, poor schooling, and previous murder charge hinder his progress. He does receive an address and phone numbers though.
Cleaver heads to the address and stumbles into a state employment center. He also finds several locals, who have become Cleaver believers and support his campaign. He speaks with one of the office’s staff members and admits he cannot drive, until he gets his license back. She asks him about his Senate campaign. Next, Cleaver heads to the church to confess his sins. Cleaver hurries an older lady along, before speaking with the priest. During the conversation, Cleaver consistently complains about his current condition. Despite drowning in his own self-pity, the priest eventually convinces Cleaver to think about others. He also tells Cleaver about the troubles of the women, who he escorted out. Cleaver leaves, after apologizing to the older lady. Back at home, Wendy asks Jack, if she would mind sleeping at her place tonight. Despite some concerns, Jack agrees.
Nicole heads to the beach for her wedding. When she is arrives, Bevan is nowhere to be found. She begins to panic and gives Bevan a call. Bevan admits he has been plotting revenge every since she dropped in. Nicole and her mother are left devastated. At home, Cleaver speaks with Wendy about his badness compared to Hitler and Dick Cheney. She admits he isn’t perfect, but nowhere never those two. Jack interrupts and ushers Wendy to a date. Meanwhile, Nicole returns home and watches the video of Barney speaking about her, while drowning her sorrows in alcohol. At the end of the episode, Jack wakes Cleaver in the middle of the night and offers him a deal. She admits she can help him win the Senate, if he is willing to leave Wendy alone. She insists Cleaver has no other future. Cleaver gives no answer, before the episode ends.
The 7th episode of Rake took a serious turn for a change. Although there were plenty of laughs here and there, the episode was mainly bleak. Nearly every main character has run into trouble. Barney is a complete mess, Cleaver has been disbarred and Nicole was destroyed by Bevan. On the flipside, Melissa, Fuzz, Jack, and Wendy seem to be doing a little better. Will Cleaver give up on Wendy and agree to Jack’s deal? Will he follow in the footsteps of David Potter and secure a seat on the Senate?
Only time will tell. A solid episode that deserves a 9 out of 10. Check out previous recaps of Rake right now.