AVClub: After four episodes of high-stakes corporate intrigue, Silicon Valley downshifted into a routine episode last week. Though “The Empty Chair” featured a potentially damning narrative turn—Richard blowing his chance at a CEO job because his hubris caused him to tank an interview with a tech writer—it eventually ties up the loose end with a neat, but carefully plotted out save involving Big Head and his knowledge of insider shenanigans at Hooli. The episode was certainly funny with plenty of stand out moments from the cast, but it couldn’t help but feel slight after weeks of confident storytelling that deftly weaved in laugh-out-loud satire. Is Silicon Valley better when it has a driving plot on which to hang its comedy? Possibly, but that much narrative gamesmanship can just as easily codify into formula as low-stakes farce. It’s ultimately good that Silicon Valley can shift into different gears because its adaptability makes it less difficult to pin down, even if it can cause some whiplash.