Silicon Valley Season 4 Episode 8: Jack Barker and the Vortex

The episode kicks off with yet another speed bump in Pied Piper’s path to success. Even the weather turns against the boys who are all but used to adversity at this point. A cold snap in the region forces consumers to panic so much that their insurance claims are finished at FGI. This causes a huge spike in storage and server usage, amassing a much larger bill than they can afford to pay. This new development is just a witty reminder that the extent of adversity can always be worse, especially when even the weather is not on your side.

The brain trust gathers, and they decide to get another client and use the cash they get from the second client to pay off the bills of the first. That is when they decide to go with Keenan Feldspar, the wunderkind of the VR world, who just happens to be a friend of Erlich’s.

The deal goes off without a hitch. Keenan likes Richards’s pitch (although he does not get all of what is happening) and Pied Piper finds itself a second client, at least for the time being. The real problem arises when Dinesh and Gilfoyle stay at Keenan’s house to hang out and check out the VR. Keenan’s attitude makes them feel so comfortable; they use Richard’s compression algorithm on his VR to make it a lot better.


Keenan offers to acquire Pied Piper, but Richard, in either ambition or pride sets the counter to offer a way to high ($25 million) and is just as surprised as anyone is when Keenan agrees to it. Keenan takes his tech to Ed Chen and gets a lot more than the $20 million he got from Bream-Hall to make this possible. He later apologizes to Richard and cajoles Richard and his tech until Richard agrees to the partnership.

Fast forward to the next day where Richard receives some unsightly news about Keenan’s VR (that it isn’t supported on mobile devices) while Jack Barker, after learning that Hooli’s release of the box is delayed because of the weather offers Keenan an ungodly amount of money for his tech. Now that the ticking time bomb that is Keenan’s VR is what Hooli plans to release at Hooli-con, Richard plans something about the whole picture towards the end of the episode (he doesn’t specify).

By SpoilerToday