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Founder Friendly

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Founder Friendly is the first episode of the third season of the HBO series Silicon Valley, and the nineteenth episode overall. It originally aired on April 24, 2016.

Plot Edit

After being unceremoniously fired, an angry Richard faces a tough decision: whether to accept the diminished role of CTO, or leave Pied Piper behind for good. Erlich takes a shine to Laurie's new choice of CEO, Jack Barker, while Dinesh and Gilfoyle weigh their options in Richard's absence. At Hooli, Gavin tries to improve his image by admitting failure, and Big Head gets wind of some major changes.[1]

Synopsis Edit

After learning he’s been fired from Pied Piper, Richard heads to Raviga to confront Laurie and the board. Laurie tells Richard they voted to fund Pied Piper at $5 million and to give it a valuation of $50 million. “You have literally created a company too valuable for you to run,” she explains, adding that they’re bringing in a new CEO. Refusing her offers to help pick the new CEO and to stay on as CTO, Richard says he’ll sue. Ron informs him he’s no longer Richard’s legal counsel, as he’s technically Pied Piper’s corporate counsel, and he’s not about to sue himself.

The following day, Monica tries to explain why she voted against Richard: If she hadn’t, Laurie would have removed her and still voted him out. “At least this way I’m still in the game,” she says. Adding insult to injury, Raviga has already hired a new CEO for Pied Piper: Jack Barker, the head of Entercross Systems, which IPO’d in 1998 for more than a billion dollars.

After Jared pledges his allegiance to Richard, Dinesh and Gilfoyle acknowledge to each other they want to stay at Pied Piper. At Hooli, Gavin Belson announces they’re getting rid of Nucleus and terminating all its employees.

Dinesh and Gilfoyle discuss Richard: He’s a brilliant coder, but lacks managerial skills. Instead of prefacing each complaint with a positive note on Richard’s character, they decide to use the acronym RIGBY: Richard Is Great, But Y’know… They agree Richard is arrogant to assume they’d walk out on a payday after giving up their own apps to work on his.

Jared presents Richard with a stack of companies offering to hire him as CTO. “You are the belle of the ball,” he explains, “and these are all your swains, hoping for a glimpse of ankle.”

Erlich meets with Jack Barker at Raviga, armed with the best Friars’ Roast old man jokes, and is completely charmed by him. Apparently, he’s a longtime fan of Erlich’s work and Aviato.

Richard reviews the companies in contention and decides Flutterbeam is the best fit. Erlich tries to talk Richard into meeting with Jack Barker first, believing a partnership between him and Richard would make Pied Piper a “decacorn”: the rare company to have a $10 billion valuation before its IPO. Dinesh and Gilfoyle take the opportunity to tell Richard they’re staying on at Pied Piper, and that they believe they can scale the app without him. He storms out to meet with Flutterbeam immediately.

At Flutterbeam, the founders tell Richard they want him on a secret project -- an app that puts mustaches on your face during live chats. Despite being underwhelmed by the idea, Richard calls his lawyer, Pete Monahan, to review the contract, but learns he’s in prison following a violent bender sparked by the alcohol in kombucha tea. Richard meets with Monahan at the prison, who tells him to swallow his pride and take the CTO job at Pied Piper.

Dinesh and Gilfoyle quickly discover they can’t scale without Richard after all, and hope they can still quit on the grounds of their loyalty to Richard.

Big Head signs a Hooli termination contract, agreeing not to disparage Gavin or the company publicly or privately, earning $20 million for his silence.

Richard meets with Jack, who accepts Richard’s decision not to work at Pied Piper. Jack says he won’t take the CEO job without him, and kindly shows Richard out, wishing him well in his future endeavors. Richard is barely out of the driveway before he stops the car and realizes what he’s giving up. He puts his car in reverse and heads back.[2]

Gallery Edit

References Edit

  1. HBO schedule
  2. Official Site

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