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A Fox, A Rabbit, and A Cabbage
Season 1, Episode 9
Episode Information
Air Date:

June 10, 2014

Written by:

Noah Hawley

Directed by:

Matt Shakman

Episode Chronology
Previous Episode:

The Heap

Next Episode:

Morton's Fork


A Fox, A Rabbit, and A Cabbage is the ninth episode of Season 1 of Fargo. The episode premiered on June 10, 2014.


Lester has an unexpected encounter, Malvo changes course, and a new investigation leads Molly down a familiar path.


Lorne Malvo has become "Mick Michaelson", a charismatic dentist out of Kansas City, with a fiancee in his dental assistant Jemma Stalone and a friend in coworker Burt Canton. Burt invites him and Jemma to Las Vegas with his wife Louise to see his estranged informant brother, and Malvo accepts. Before he goes to dinner, he sits alone in his Vegas hotel room, listening to one of his clients commit suicide to avoid the police over a recorded phone call.

As Malvo tells the group a story about the time he accidentally injected himself with novocaine, Lester Nygaard approaches him to try and make conversation, and Malvo pretends not to recognize him as the group leaves. Malvo leans over to Lester and tells him to walk away. Lester pursues him to an elevator and confidently tells him he will not let Malvo pretend their interactions did not happen. Malvo asks him if this is what he wants, and when Lester answers yes, he kills his group and tells Lester the deaths are on him. Annoyed, he explains he had been working on Burt for six months so he could get to his brother, and it has now gone to waste. When the elevator arrives at the storage floor, Malvo asks Lester to help him move the bodies, but Lester hits Malvo with his award and flees. Malvo, amused, calls after Lester that he will see him soon. Lester gets Linda Nygaard to pack, and they leave for Bemidji.

Bill Budge and Webb Pepper are still in the file room. Budge tells Pepper a riddle: a man has a fox, a rabbit, and a cabbage that he needs to get across a river. He has a boat to do so, but can only take across one thing at a time. If left alone with the rabbit, the fox will eat it; if left alone with the cabbage, the rabbit will do the same. Pepper's answer is to eat all of them. Their superior approaches them and orders them to pull the file on the Fargo Crime Syndicate massacre because of Molly Solverson's repeated calls. Molly, Lou, and Gus and Greta Grimly have breakfast together. Molly notes that with Bill Oswalt out of town, she is acting as temporary chief. As Gus and Greta leave so he can take her to school, Lou smiles and voices his approval of his son and granddaughter-in-law. The Las Vegas police phone her to explain the shooting in the elevator, having called her because the witness, Lester, is now in Bemidji.

Lester and Linda arrive at their home in the woods, and he promises her an immediate vacation to Mexico for cutting the Vegas trip short. As Linda packs, Lester pulls out Chazz's old hunting gear, and pockets a pistol. Molly arrives to question him. On his mail route, Gus is passed by a red car, and realizes Malvo is driving. Malvo goes to Lester's old house only to find that he has moved. Unable to get his new location, he frightens the children living there by telling them about the murders that occurred, and claiming the house may now be haunted. He passes by Lester's insurance company, but finds it closed.

Lester lies to Molly, claiming he never met anyone at the bar and never found any bodies in an elevator. Linda backs him up, saying they left because she was homesick. Molly tells them that Vegas will be soon sending security footage and that they should stay put, which Lester assures her they will. As Molly is called and told the FBI agents will meet her at Lou's, she notices Lester watching her from the window. As she heads there, Malvo stops at Lou's for coffee and a slice of pie. Malvo easily guesses Lou was a cop at some point, and tries to find Lester using his information. He notices a picture of Gus and Molly's wedding, and Lou explains that she is his daughter. When he again presses for Lester's location, Lou tells him about a case he had in 1979 in Sioux Falls with an incredible body count. He says he saw something not animal, but something unexplainable in the violence present in the case. Malvo leaves just as Molly arrives, and the FBI agents arrive shortly afterwards. She shows them her board, leaving them amazed at her investigative skills and powers of deduction. Bill arrives, and his protests at seeing the board are quickly shut down by the agents, who point out holes in his version of events and decide they will be staying the night.

Lester prints out tickets for their flight and drives with Linda to get their passports from the office. Lester notices a light on inside the office and sends Linda in to get them wearing his jacket. As she grabs the passports, Malvo emerges from the darkness and kills her. Realizing she is not Lester, he leaves quickly as Lester sighs with relief at not being the one killed.


Main cast

Recurring cast




  • Last appearance of Burt Canton.
  • Last appearance of Louise Canton.
  • Last appearance of Jemma Stalone.
  • Last appearance of Linda Park.
  • This episode is named after the brain-teaser asked by Bill Budge to his partner in the episode, the solution is given by Lester Nygaard at Morton's Fork.
  • Burt calls "Mike" "Friend-o". This term is used by Anton Chigurh -- directed at someone he might kill -- in the movie No Country For Old Men. Chigurh actually kills the character played by Stephen Root, who is playing Burt here, in that movie.
  • Lou brings up the Sioux Falls massacre that will be the climax of season 2.
Season 1 episodes

01. "The Crocodile's Dilemma"
02. "The Rooster Prince"
03. "A Muddy Road"
04. "Eating the Blame"
05. "The Six Ungraspables"

06. "Buridan's Ass"
07. "Who Shaves the Barber?"
08. "The Heap"
09. "A Fox, A Rabbit, and A Cabbage"
10. "Morton's Fork"