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The Six Ungraspables
Season 1, Episode 5
Episode Information
Air Date:

May 13, 2014

Written by:

Noah Hawley

Directed by:

Colin Hanks

Episode Chronology
Previous Episode:

Eating the Blame

Next Episode:

Buridan's Ass


The Six Ungraspables is the fifth episode of Season 1 of Fargo. The episode premiered on May 13, 2014.


When Lester has a close call, Molly makes an unorthodox decision. Gus weighs some neighborly advice, and Malvo gets what he wants.


In 2005, Lester Nygaard is given a shotgun as part of a sale of a pair of socks. When he shows it off to his wife, she predictably mocks him and laughs about his presumed inability to use it. In 2006, Lester takes it off the shelf where it is stored to kill Lorne Malvo after murdering Pearl, but lays it by the back door when Vern Thurman arrives to question him. A couple minutes later, Malvo picks it up and uses it to kill Thurman. The pellets go through his chest cavity, and a stray pellet embeds itself in Lester's right hand. The wound it gives him is shown becoming increasingly infected until the present day, where Lester, visibly ill, sits between Wes Wrench and Grady Numbers. They interrogate Lester by pressing down on his hand wound until he gives them Malvo's name and presumed location, Duluth, as well as the fact that the Bemidji police have a picture of him. The duo are released on bail and Lester vomits when they leave.

Molly Solverson lays out all of her evidence regarding Malvo and Lester's association with him to Bill Oswalt, and he finally agrees to another round of questioning. Gus Grimly researches Malvo's "Frank Peterson" alias with his daughter in hopes of poking a hole in his character, but finds a website that confirms Peterson as the minister, despite having no pictures. Malvo buys a police scanner and a two-way radio from the same dealer that sold him Adderall. His blackmail against Stavros Milos successful, he calls Milos from Don Chumph's house phone, where Milos does not confirm where he got his money from but says he will pay the blackmail regardless. Malvo locks Don in his pantry to keep from getting cold feet.

While Lester is taken to the hospital, Molly rides with him in the back of the ambulance. She asks him, drugged and delirious, how he hurt his hand and if he paid Malvo to kill Sam Hess. Lester insists that "I never paid him." An insider in the Bemidji PD gives Wrench and Numbers the file on Malvo.

When Gus notices his neighbor Ari Ziskind, the husband of the woman who attempted to seduce him, eating alone in his kitchen at night, the two of them start talking through their open windows, and Ari comes to his apartment to continue talking. He tells Ziskind of his predicament with Malvo, and asks what he should do. Ziskind tells Gus a story: a rich man reads about the misery of the world in the news, and decides to donate all his wealth to charity, then give up his kidney, and finally, commits suicide with the words "ORGAN DONOR" written on a nearby wall. When Gus asks if the man's sacrifices stopped the world's suffering, Ziskind tells him it did not. He tells Gus that the moral is only a fool thinks they can solve the world's problems. Gus responds "but you've got to try, don't you?"

Unable to sleep, he goes for a drive and unknowingly passes a car driven by Malvo with Milos in the back. They stop at his supermarket so Milos can get the money. Milos' son interrupts him while he gathers the payout, telling him he did some investigative work and found the cricket infestation to be a result of foul play, but Milos interrupts him and sends him to hide out with Wally Semenchko until the deal is over. At the hospital, Molly learns the pellet has been removed, but that forensic analysis shows it had passed through fabric before hitting Lester. The doctor also tells her that Ida Thurman gave birth. Molly sneaks into Lester's house and notices the washing machine has been moved. She takes off the back panel where Lester hid the hammer that killed Pearl, but finds nothing.

While he drives Milos around, Malvo remarks upon the religious imagery in his office, mentioning how the Romans were raised by wolves. He muses about the humor in the greatest empire on Earth being founded by wolves, and tells Milos an anecdote about a woman he knew who was almost sexually assaulted by a dog that was not neutered. He tells Milos that "there are no saints in the animal kingdom." Gus, patrolling the area, is driven past on the way to Milos' house. When they arrive, Milos lets Malvo go after paying him.

As Gus comes back home and arranges to meet with Molly and discuss the case, Malvo follows him and listens in on the scanner and radio. He is approached by Ziskind, who threatens to call the police, unsettled with Malvo's behavior. Malvo threatens him by mentioning how long it would take the police to come to a scene where an alarm was tripped, and Ziskind calls him a devil in Hebrew. Malvo grins and drives away. Molly visits Ida and her newborn daughter, Bernadette. She again promises to find Thurman's murderer. She then visits Lester's room and glares at him, while Lester, pretending to be asleep, opens his eyes while he faces away from her.


Main cast

Recurring cast




  • The title refers to a Zen koan. A monk asks Ummon, "What is the Dharma Kaya?" Ummon told him "The Six Ungraspables.", the Graspables being the five senses and the mind.
  • When the neighbor that visited Gus recognizes Lorne Malvo as an Evil Angel he calls him "Se'irim", the yiddish word for "demon",
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"