Silicon Valley recap, episode 4: Fiduciary duties

ITworld's Melissa Shaw watched episode 4 of "Silicon Valley" so you don't have to.

When we last left Palo Alto: Richard tries to incorporate the name "Pied Piper", but discovers it's already is use. He goes off to prove his negotiating skills by securing the name rights while everyone else in the house does something funnier. Oh, and Gilfoyle is Canadian.

In case you missed it...
'Silicon Valley' recap, episode 3: Articles of Incorporation
'Silicon Valley' recap, episode 2: The cap table
'Silicon Valley' recap, episode 1: Minimal viable product

Delaware jokes are always funny

Richard meets with a lawyer to sign the incorporation papers for Pied Piper. The jurist in question looks like a young cross between Robert Downey Jr. and Patrick Dempsey. He says Pied Piper is incorporating in Delaware, and Richard wonders, confused, “Why Delaware?” A question, let’s face it, chronically asked regarding the First State. Anyway, the lawyer notes that Richard will be meeting with investor Peter Gregory at the end of the week to discuss Richard’s vision for the company. Richard freaks out when he realizes he cannot explain his vision - because he is Richard.

Just hang around for three years or so

Over at hooli, the brogrammers are trying to reverse engineer Pied Piper and ask VP of Spite Big Head for help. They realize he doesn’t have a clue about how Pied Piper works, therefore hooli spent $600,000 to steal away a guy who knows nothing. He is moved off the reverse-engineering project and onto…nothing. He’s not fired, he just doesn’t have to do anything. We would be interested in an opening on Big Head’s team.

Were paid to like you

The Pied Piper staff is invited to a Roman toga charity bash (“An Orgy of Caring”) run by Gregory’s foundation. It’s emceed by Flo Rida, whom Gregory calls: “Florida”, which is pretty great. The Piperians are shocked in thrilled disbelief when two stunning women approach and are intrigued by the guys and their conversation, only to find they run a start-up of gorgeous actors who are hired to work tech parties and pretend to be interested in the nerdy invited guests. Concerned about his inability to schmooze and express his vision for his company, Richard drinks heavily.

Still wearing his bed sheets

Richard wakes up the next morning to find he’s still wearing his fitted sheet – and that he drunkenly appointed extroverted, seasoned-schmoozer Erlich to Pied Piper’s Board of Directors. Erlich starts dressing like Steve Jobs and delivers breakfast in (bunk) bed.

Fellowship of the unassigned

Back over at hooli, Big Head stumbles upon a gang of employees on the roof. It’s where they hang out since they’ve been “unassigned,” biding time doing absolutely nothing until their contracts are up and their options vested. A Japanese management devotee, hooli head Gavin Belson considers the stain of “unassigned” the worst dishonor an employee could experience, but we have to go with the unassigned’s plan to walk to Arby’s for lunch.

Stuck in Steves sweater

Richard has second thoughts about appointing Erlich to the board, and after much now-trademark fretting, tells the man he’s changed his mind and he is no longer a board member. Erlich says that decision is indicative of Richard’s lack of vision and then promptly gets stuck trying to rip off his Jobs sweater.

I have misplaced my pants

Richard’s trying to psych himself up before his meeting with Gregory to outline his still-unexplainable vision for the company. He goes to the bathroom, accidentally gets water on his pants and in a complete panic decides to soak the pair so “no one will really notice.” Despite Jared’s counseling, he goes into a full panic attack until Erlich shows up and offers to go in with him, equating Richard to Wozniak: “No Woz should go into a meeting like that alone.”

Erlichs back on the board, Jared awaits a flood

Richard has Erlich do all the talking, and he does, flawlessly imparting Richard’s vision impressively enough to get Gregory’s more-mellow-than-1,000,000-Buddists-on-Prozac seal of approval: “Sure.” Richard informs Gregory that Erlich is the third member of the Pied Piper board. This slide has nothing to do with Gregory or Erlich. We just really enjoyed the visual joke of Jared, who traded his dry pants for Richard’s short, soaking-wet ones.


Leaving Gregory’s office, Erlich spies a photo on the wall of a young Gregory, Belson and two other people who we’re dying to know how they got their pics Photoshopped into this prop. Richard asks, “Were you guys friends?” to which Gregory responds, “I thought so.” Oooh, intrigue. Outside the office, Richard thanks Erlich for his help, then promptly vomits on him.