After last week’s DEA action (where Epifanio told the agency about Camila’s shipment) things are getting more than tense for the Dallas drug queenpin. Queen of the South “El Hombre Pajaro” – which translates to “birdman” – sees the complete shutdown of Camila’s supply. A seemingly reluctant Epifanio has declared war by working with Jimenez man Eric, aka Birdman.
Camila spends much of the episode meeting with her dealers and learning that there is no loyalty amongst her “clients.” The product is what counts and Eric the Birdman is supplying what she cannot. By the end of the episode she is reduced to stealing cocaine from James’ friends in the Florida Keys.
Theresa continues her move to leave Camila. She visits the immigration lawyer and sets things in motion for proper papers and passports, “The real deal.” She also bumps into the priest she questioned about smuggling. He realizes she is not from ICE and he offers to help her get into Mexico.
Meanwhile Mendoza is under suspicion, an idea planted by Epifanio, for working with the DEA. Camila questions her but James assures his boss that though she hides many things, Theresa is not hiding the DEA.
Brenda has her number two cut the cocaine down so much that they start losing money and he gets knocked around. She decides to switch to crystal meth which is much more addictive. Theresa tells her friend that she is working on the two of them, and Tony, disappearing.
Epifanio continues the big squeeze and turns another shipment over to the DEA. He appears to be faltering but Cesar supports his boss’s actions. Vargas’ latest move has left Camila completely dry. She has to speak to the Columbians to get more product.
Her contact reveals that until she pays the $5 million, for the lost shipment, that they will not do business with her. They also tell her that if she cannot pay, they will approach Epifanio.
After the meeting Camila orders James to take Theresa and get the money – all of their reserves – and pay the Columbians. Once the money is collected, they are attacked by men in balaclavas and half the money is stolen. As the men leave, one of Camila’s men is killed and one of the robbers is as well.
Theresa recognizes a tattoo on the dead man’s hand. Eric’s men had these tattoos at the party where she dropped off the device for James. Epifanio talks to Eric who tells him that one of Camila’s men was killed.
He asks Vargas if this was too much and Epifanio tells Birdman to continue as planned.
After this robbery Camila no longer has the $5 million to pay off the Columbians. (She has half the money.) She calls her banker who is under pressure to drop her as a client. It seems that Epifanio is cutting off all his wife’s avenues of relief. Without the money she will not only lose future supplies but her husband will be included in on all her business dealings.
It is inconceivable that Camila has not worked out that her husband is behind everything. She may be rushing about trying to get product but surely it has to sink in that the one thing all her problems have in common is Epifanio.
This week’s episode of Queen of the South was a bit slow. A necessary evil to set things up for upcoming episodes. It was frustrating though to have Camila stumbling around in the dark while Epifanio pulls her strings.
Speaking of Senior Vargas, that phone call at the end of the episode was clearly a “goodbye.” He has taken the muzzle off of Birdman and it looks like Epifanio is opting for a drug cartel “divorce.”
If Camila does not soon work out what her husband is up to, she may never have a chance to steal the 25 kilograms of coke from James’ buddies in Florida. Theresa had almost no contact from her future self and definitely no words of wisdom from “Queenpin Mendoza” were passed on this week.
Queen of the South airs Thursdays on USA. Tune in to see if “Queen” Camila loses her crown.