Start-Ups: Silicon Valley Ep. 8 -- the grand delusion

In what could be the last episode ever, one startup is sold. One member of the cast is delusional. And the rest drift into a gray, gray matter-of-factness.

Chris Matyszczyk
4 min read
Sarah. Who is working. On herself. BravoTV Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Last night saw some history in "Start-Ups: Silicon Valley."

Yes, given its rather tawdry ratings -- 20 percent of those of "Real Housewives," so rumor has it -- this could be the last episode ever. So the excitement was more palpable than that for the discovery of the tomb of a hitherto unknown ancient Egyptian king.

We began with grunting. Yes, Sarah (blonde lifecaster, recently recovering from not having breast cancer) and David (gay, vaguely sane) are working out.

Sarah has found a wonderful sponsor for the launch party of David's app. It's called Goal Sponsors. The app is about health. The only sponsor Sarah can find is a vodka company.

Which, like other small elements of this show, doesn't quite work.

Ben (short, pretty, pretty high-pitched voice) still doesn't have the money he was promised by investors. Ben is a "technologist" but doesn't code. He needs coder money. The money hasn't arrived.

His sister and occasional partner Hermione (blonde, loud, fond of dildos) is late for the meeting with the coder.

Ben and Hermione beg their investors. The investors are silver-tongued. And, wait, Hermione is off to South America. Ben tells her she "doesn't have the productivity to back it up."

"It" being, well, working. Ben admits he wants to slap her. "Ben is acting like a dick," she declares.

Yes, this is what happens at top-flight startups. Nothing different than what happens at high school.

Kimmy is still dull
Meanwhile, Kim (brunette, nasal, dull) is still taking herself more seriously than anyone else should. Her startup is something to do with fashion. Because that's what the fashion market really needs. Another Web site.

Her method is simply to go around talking to other people and getting ideas. Indeed, she isn't shown doing anything else -- other than talking to Dwight (hairy, actually codes).

"I'm confused," she says. Viewers might, by this stage, have been just bored. Kimmy's musings are about as fascinating as the soot after Santa's visit down the chimney.

David is preparing for his party. He is desperate for beta users. Otherwise his product won't work. However, few people have come to his party so far. His app is, like AA, all about people helping people.

But if there aren't any people, then there'll be no people who can help people.

Where are the lesbians?
Stunningly, he has invited Ben and Hermione to have a booth at his event. Sarah -- who dislikes Hermione like she dislikes smudged makeup -- is appalled. She, after all, is working for free.

Hermione makes a presentation about her startup -- called Ignite -- and offers treats to winners of challenges.

The first prize is champagne. The consolation prize is a date with her.

Sarah decides to intervene and demand that lesbians should come forward to partake of the consolation prize challenge. David pulls her away, before she makes a fool of herself. Well, slightly after.

Yes, it is all cringeworthy watching. Thank you for asking.

Sarah is frustrated that Ben, Hermione and David are all chummy.

Hermione is frustrated that she is in meetings trying to raise Series A funding. She could be "masturbating."

No, Hermione doesn't once think about the viewers and what they could be doing. Why would she? She's Hermione.

The grand delusion
Sarah demands a business meeting with David. She whines that she didn't have a booth at the party. She then whines that David "physically assaulted" her at the event.

"You laid your hands on me," she continues. "The definition of assault is a sudden physical attack," she explains.

"You are a child," replies David.

She is clearly delusional. "You are delusional," says David.

Oh, dear. A friendship is destroyed in one sad business meeting. Which, naturally, takes place in some restaurant.

"Will you please leave?" demands Sarah. There are no loyalties in business, she wisely explains. Sarah is very loyal. To herself and her delusions.

Hermione explains to Ben that, now they have their $500,000, she's off to South America on another project for a mere month.

You see, these people are involved in so many different projects and companies. How did they ever have the time to shoot a reality show?

Meanwhile Kimmy and Dwight have a meeting. Yes, in a restaurant.

Kimmy's heard. Because all Kimmy does is talk to people. Dwight has sold his Carsabi to Facebook. Kimmy's bottom lip emerges. She is envious.

"He won. Most people lose," is her inner thought, outwardly expressed.

And so this show winds to an end. Many in Silicon Valley feared it would embarrass the Valley.

It didn't. It merely showed that most of these pretty people are pretty frighteningly self-regarding, frighteningly uninteresting and frighteningly smug. Which was what many had expected.

Hermione has now returned from South America. Her absence made no difference. Ben regrets he gave her 50 percent of the company. She was only worth 20.

Sarah feels she needs to work on herself.

Dwight now works for Facebook.

Meanwhile, Kimmy is not working on not being dull.