By this point in the play, the character reversal is complete. Austin is now the drunk and Lee is now the screenwriter. As Lee has invaded Austin's profession so easily, Austin thinks it is about time for him to become a thief. Austin boasts that he will commit crimes bigger than anything Lee has ever imagined, in an attempt to outdo his older brother in some new capacity just as Lee has outdone Austin in screenwriting thus far. Although Austin has been verbally aggressive with Saul in the previous scene, Austin actually takes a swing at Lee in this one. Such ferocity would have been almost unthinkable from the mild-mannered, polite screenwriter we see at the beginning of the play. In another signal of Austin's transformation, Lee remarks that Austin is beginning to talk like their father. Austin has heretofore attempted in every endeavor to be the opposite of his father, but drunk on the floor he regresses and actually uses the same ideas his father espoused.

Lee brings up the possibility of disappearing, but Austin argues that such an escape is now impossible. Just like it was for their father, the notion of escaping regular life is almost overwhelming for the brothers. Lee has come to the house from the desert where he has lived like a vagrant, while Austin is increasingly excited by the possibility of escape. Austin, in his life so far, has tried to escape his family through his work. When Lee takes that away, Austin realizes that his efforts have been unsuccessful. He now needs a different kind of escape. The opportunity presented to him is the desert, a different life from the one he had originally planned on making for himself. Lee, on the other hand, is taken with the idea of financial success. While his efforts to sabotage Austin may have begun as simply cruel, now that a large sum of money is waiting for him upon completion of the screenplay, Lee is reconsidering the manner by which he has lived his own life. Earlier in the play each of the brothers has wistfully dreamed about living the other's life. Now this dream is becoming a reality, as each is beginning to actually live the other's life. Lee has met with success, almost for the first time, and he likes the new taste of it.