WARNING: The following contains spoilers for “Jump,” the fifth episode of HBO’s Run.
HBO’s Run has mostly been a three-way dance thus far with Billy (Domhnall Gleeson) and Ruby (Merritt Wever) trying to stop Billy’s bitter personal assistant, Fiona (Archie Panjabi), from ruining their lives. Most recently, Fiona stole Billy’s money and threatened to release a recording of Ruby and Billy having sex to Ruby’s family, so it’s safe to say she’s got the upper hand.
However, in “Jump,” as the duo pursue Fiona, jumping from a New York train as it leaves the station, a series of unfortunate events lead to a new villain entering the fray: Ruby’s husband, Laurence (Rich Sommer).
Laurence might actually be Ruby’s salvation and lone way out of this debacle, which just turned lethal. In the episode, Billy and Ruby corner Fiona at a farmhouse, and while we don’t know if he tossed her out a window willingly or if it was an accident, Fiona is dead, impaled on a tractor. However, while Billy and Fiona were bickering, Laurence was on the phone, angrily demanding his wife come home.
While there are signs Laurence may be too controlling and even violent, Ruby isn’t really afraid of him. She’s just bored, and from what little we saw so far, he’s a plain all-American snoozefest. She just got married too quickly, pregnant too soon and really only went with him for financial security after her dreams of architecture tanked. Laurence, though, knows how to manipulate a woman with failed dreams, and Ruby just doesn’t want to go back to this life.
Laurence has a huge role to play, though, because when Billy is mourning Fiona, as Laurence and Ruby chat again, she says there’s no chance she’s with Billy. Laurence is clearly in denial over her affair, even though he’s hacked her computer, which is synced to her phone, and saw Billy’s texts asking her to “RUN” and elope. She lies and says she’s still at a work retreat in Florida, and Laurence says he’s going to meet her there. But he seems to have tracked her phone and is actually coming to New York to find his cheating wife.
At this point, he asks her to choose between him or Billy, and Ruby has a chance to confess. Instead she lies, and chooses Laurence. The sight of a broken Billy, the possibility of a murder charge and the fact she knows he might not be able to keep quiet out of guilt means she needs a way out. What makes it worse is Ruby left her phone at the crime scene, and there’s a mysterious witness at the farmhouse who knows what happened. After they hitchhiked with Laurel (Phoebe Waller-Bridge) back to the station as well, that’s one more witness, and the trailer for the next episode suggests Laurel will be providing information for a manhunt.
Laurence could now be the savior who can help mop the mess up given his money, contacts and other resources. Ruby just can’t risk a future marred with death. And as much as she might not want to, a life with Laurence would be less chaotic than what’s happening with Billy right now. Her husband seems ready to forgive her, and Ruby looks like she’s preparing to run back to her family and forget this crazy fling.
Starring Merritt Wever and Domhnall Gleeson, Run airs Sundays on HBO at 10:30 p.m. ET/PT.
Season 1 of HBO's Run just introduced its newest villain,and it's someone who could offer Ruby the road to salvation after a tragic incident.