This one was a slog for me. A lot of unrelated action with no segues. Low and tight camera angles and virtually no musical cues. Plus the shadows. Everyone and everything was in shadow. These episodes are necessary to move the story forward but you could tell this was written by a team of writers and directed by someone other than Tim Van Patten, who seems to be the director who really loves those amber lit scenes. And loving, fetishized shots of Richard’s mask.
Fade in on a boxer getting his nose bloodied in a training ring. Dempsey’s practicing in Atlantic City to promote the Carpentier fight, which Nucky is turning it into the first ever Pay-Per-”View” bout, selling it live over the wireless at $2.50 a pop. Grass doesn’t grow under Nucky’s feet. And foreshadowing doesn’t register, either, when he asks Dempsey to stay in town to do some more promotion down at Babette’s.
As Nucky’s sweet-talking Dempsey and his manager a reporter comes up to ask a final question. Dempsey says to save it, but the reporter wants to talk to Nucky about playing golf with Daugherty over Memorial Day, wondering if it had anything to do with his election fraud case. Nucky non-answers by telling Dempsey to show the reporter his hook. As Nucky and the Mayor get into Nucky’s baby blue Rolls, Dempsey and his training partner take a not at all gay run on the beach, playfully jabbing each other to So Long, Oolong on the soundtrack. Why? I don’t know, I just report what I see.
I told you…everything is Peachy.
The song turns to ambient music as Nelson comes home and Lucy’s listening to the victrola. Nelson asks after the baby and Lucy appears to be back to her old self, smoking and lolling around complaining about the baby because she cried for five hours. Nelson asks if Lucy fed her, a reasonable question because she is, after all, Lucy, but Lucy gets indignant and says yes. Nelson, still beat down from Rose’s beat down, apologizes, saying he has a headache.
With those pleasantries out of the way, Lucy wants to talk business. First she asks about Rose, who’s staying with an aunt in Milwaukee. Nelson has no way to contact her and says he’s being tested, as is Lucy, in her way. She cuts the bullshit and just asks about the $3000 he owes her for the baby. He doesn’t have it. Lucy tries to clarify if this is temporary or permanent but Nelson tries to distract Lucy by asking if she’s enjoying the victrola as the baby starts screaming.
Lucy just keeps on asking about the money as Nelson keeps distracting about the baby’s screaming being an “extremely penetrating sound,” and wonders what he was thinking when he made the offer. Lucy thinks he conned her and starts in on one of her Lucy benders but Nelson just grabs his hat and says he can’t concentrate. As he leaves the apartment Lucy’s developed a full head of steam over the agreement they made, and that the baby is his because he “bought it” and that the baby doesn’t even have a name. Then she gets into a shouting match with the next door neighbor. Ah, the milk of human kindness flows through that delicate flower, doesn’t it?
Keep her away from bunny hutches.
Jimmy’s assembled everyone he needs to start his own crew: Richard, Mickey, Al, Luciano and Lansky. They’re meeting at the Commodore’s and Luciano bitches at Jimmy that Manny’s nagging about the $5K Charlie said they’d advance him. Jimmy points out that he agreed to it but Charlie seems to think that promises made at gunpoint aren’t binding. Before they can start arguing Meyer, the littlest Alpha, suggests Jimmy start the meeting.
Jimmy sits in the Commodore’s chair and talks about how much has changed since the series premiered last year. Charlie says that Meyer started shaving but Jimmy will not be deterred because it dovetails nicely with his point, which is that they know their respective businesses and cities and may as well work for themselves, instead of for Nucky, Rothstein or Torrio. Charlie agrees with Jimmy and says they don’t need the geezers but Al still feels loyal to Torrio. He and Charlie get into a meathead stand-off, but, again, since Meyer’s the alpha of the group, he takes a calm/assertive approach with Charlie, snapping his finger and handing Charlie a treat. Oh wait, that’s Cesar Millan. Meyer just tells Charlie to shut up and he does.
What Charlie lacks in brains he makes up for in being surly.
Jimmy continues on about having the Commodore’s connections and Gillian brings in Eli. Charlie shifts around in his seat, but who knows why. Boner for Gillian, remembering Eli busted him? Both seem to be the case. Jimmy introduces Eli to Al, Luciano and Lansky, but Charlie reminds Eli they’ve met already. When he busted Charlie, inadvertently saving his life so lighten up, Charlie. With that resolved, Gillian exits grandly, calling herself a geisha as Charlie watches her uncomfortably. But that could be how his face is all the time.
Jimmy finishes laying out how, with the Coast Guard and the police working with him, he has a complete lateral operation so moving the liquor will always be safe. Al still can’t see past his own nose so he points out that Torrio’s working with George Remus. Jimmy says “So, Torrio takes care of Torrio? Where does that leave you?” Jimmy’s question requires actual thought, though, so Al just sits in his chair and stews.
I’d be pissed if I knew what Jimmy was talking about.
Lansky does think ahead and across different levels so he asks about handling Nucky. Jimmy says he goes to jail and Jimmy has Mayor Bader appoint a patsy in Nucky’s place. Jimmy’s planning on modeling himself on Nucky, so all the politicians answer to him and AC stays a machine. Al, still a meathead, thinks shooting people is just as effective, since Jimmy had no problem shooting up the Sheridans last season. Charlie and Al start in again with the dick-swinging over who’s hands are dirtier and Jimmy tries to get the conversation back on track, but Eli finally pipes up with “Jesus Christ, just kill him.” Brotherly love at its deepest.
As Jimmy’s Holly Hobby eyes threaten to devour his whole face, Al thinks Eli’s on to something. Eli continues on that Nucky’s not “King Fuckin’ Neptune,” and he’s tired of the pissing match between Jimmy and Nucky. Just shoot Nucky, acknowledge and move on. Jimmy doesn’t like Eli airing their dirty laundry in front of strangers, because I guess there’s a code of etiquette among gangsters, but Al, being Al, likes Eli’s solution because it involves gun violence. Politics makes his little Neanderthal brain hurt.
Jimmy wants his mommy…then remembers who she is.
Jimmy’s losing control of the meeting and tries to swing it back to how AC is different which only riles the out-of-towners more. They don’t understand what’s special about Nucky, who is, according to Lansky “Just another old timer.” Yes, but his name is first in the credits and you’re still a recurring character. Jimmy tries to turn it back on Lansky by pointing out that Rothstein’s an “old timer” too but Lansky, who according to his bio was 19 at the time, is too cool for this room and says “Come to my house, we’ll discuss that.”
Richard becomes the unlikely voice of reason and asks Eli if he could kill his own brother. Of course not, he’s Eli. He stews in his seething, bitter resentment toward Nucky, but only kills in the heat of the moment. Al jumps in and says he’ll bring in someone from Chicago, in boom out, and they take over AC. Jimmy’s head is spinning at this point trying to find an angle that doesn’t involve killing Nucky but Eli, having transferred some of his bitter resentment to Jimmy, puts him on the spot to make a decision since he’s the “boss.” With everyone literally looking to Jimmy for an answer, he gives Al the go ahead.
Without Tim Van Patten, this is all the Richard we get.
Van Alden’s walking to his office and we hear a woman from inside talk about the nearest law library being in Camden. Nelson sees her at his desk and his face twitches and his eyes bug in anger as he asks “What in damnation is going on here?” The woman doesn’t miss a beat in her conversation so Nelson marches over to Sawicki to find out who she is.
She’s Assistant US Attorney Esther Randolph in town to continue the Nucky investigation. Nelson doesn’t really care who she is or why she’s there. He just wants his big fancy desk back. She could not care less about Nelson or his delusion of grandeur and her chief investigator snottily tells Nelson that his stuff is on the crap desk next to Sawicki. Nelson’s trying to be big FBI guy, but Randolph tells him she expects his discretion while they share office space. Randolph gets back to work as Nelson ponders how many times he can be emasculated over the course of an episode.
What it looks like when a statue has a stroke.
Having been dismissed he retreats to the crap desk and sees someone else’s rather racist ashtray on his desk. He contemplates how and why someone would come to own such a thing and chief investigator non sequiturs about where to buy wading boots. Whuh? Nelson responds with his own non sequitur that they’ll be eaten alive. Chief investigator thinks he means in the bay but Van Alden says by Nucky Thompson. Randolph doesn’t like having her abilities questioned and asks on what he’s basing his lack of confidence. Nelson portentously says that “the scales of justice are weighted down by graft,” to which she snidely responds, “Oh my. That is shocking.” Unable to get the better of Randolph, Nelson takes that horrible little ashtray and slams it on one of the clerks’ desks and says it’s not his. So there, Esther Randolph!
I said “Good day,” sir.
Margaret’s in Brooklyn to visit the family. She’s chastely dolled up and not fitting in at all. She glances skittishly at the crowds and street vendors like she wasn’t broke and getting beaten regularly by her husband a year ago. Finally she reaches her family’s hovel building. The hallway is dank and narrow and a far cry from the airy home she shares with Nucky. She’s greeted by a little ginger girl who speaks awkward Gaelic to her. Margaret’s all “WTF?” when a slightly older girl walks in and says the ginger’s been practicing her Gaelic all morning. Margaret recognizes the older girl as Beth which means the younger one is Eilish, who’d rather be called “Juliet” which I’m assuming is the 20s equivalent of “Britney.”
Then another, even older girl comes into the room and Margaret has her first real pang of nostalgia when she recognizes Eulah. She’s barely out of her teens, if that, but already has a dowdy, maternal look to her. They have a brief, awkward moment before their oldest sibling, Eamon, comes into the room. Margaret gets almost meek when she sees him and he’s the only sibling to call her “Peg.” Their history is clearly deeper, more complicated and more melancholy than she has with her sisters.
Margaret’s brought taffy with her as a gift and Eamon first says they have it nearby, but at Eulah’s stern look says he’s sure it’s grand. That leads to a wonderfully awkward moment where everyone’s just waiting for one of the adults to say something and Eamon asks Margaret for a hug. It’s about as affectionate as everything else has been, but he tells Margaret that dinner’s ready and for Eilish to take Margaret’s fancy hat. In case we didn’t pick up that Margaret over-identifies with Eilish, Eulah tells her that she’s just like “Peg.”
Mensch, who is actually named “Icky Ginsburg” but I’m sticking with Mensch, is meeting with Nucky to tell him about his new prosecutor, Esther Randolph. Showing that everyone involved in this enterprise is really good at passing judgment, he sneers that she’s from California and spent ten years as a public defender representing draft dodgers and prostitutes. Because representing corrupt politicians and gangsters is so much more noble. Nucky wants to know how she could work for Daugherty but Mensch says he can’t get rid of her because someone on Daugherty’s staff has to look honest.
Nucky, realizing there’s nothing he can do about it now, turns to blaming someone else for the shit he’s gotten himself into, pointing out it was Mensch’s idea to get the case transferred. Mensch doesn’t bat an eye and says he was waiting for this. Nucky wants to know why Mensch isn’t doing anything so Mensch points out that if the AG can’t help, what’s a private-practice attorney going to do. But Nucky’s getting a good whine on wondering WHYYYYY, WHY HIIIIIM, like he’s Nancy Kerrigan. Why not any of the numerous other corrupt AC politicians and kingmakers. Mensch, ever reasonable, points out that he’s the one they have stuff on. Nucky wonders why he’s paying Mensch, and Mensch says to sit there while Nucky acts like a dick to him.
The face of someone gradually getting tired of eating shit.
Eddie interrupts to say that Nucky has two visitors and Nucky launches into his favorite game of piss all over the valet, asking if Mensch is a mirage. Eddie finally got his balls out of hock though and says he understands and steps aside to let Lucy into the office, toting little Baby Van Alden. Nucky’s jaw about drops and Mensch skedaddles. Once alone, Nucky points out emphatically that they haven’t been together in over a year and Lucy tells him not to start.
He’s bemused by the baby and congratulates Lucy, telling her she looks glowing. But she’s Lucy and only accepts compliments she thinks are sincere so she tells him she looks like shit, but the baby’s a “little scoop of ice cream.” Nucky doesn’t disagree and seems to be softening on Lucy when she admits she thought about shaking him down but that’s no way for a mother to act.
The face of motherly love.
Lucy starts reminiscing about the good old days and how she knew her place was to make Nucky happy. He’s not put off by this but says things change. She knows this, and that now she has to make little Baby Van Alden happy, and that’s why she came to ask Nucky for money. Nucky wonders about the baby daddy and assumes Lucy doesn’t know who he is. Lucy flirtily sasses that she knows and maybe Nucky knows, too.
Nelson’s trying to eavesdrop on Randolph interviewing Neary but the chief investigator closes the sliding door between the two rooms. As they exposit about Neary’s whole story line over the last two seasons, Nelson gets a phone call that bugs his eyes out even more than usual. Randolph continues to interview Neary but he thinks he’s free and clear because he had an agreement with Thorogood. She tells him that agreement is null and void and if she wants, she can make his life a living hell. In fact, she’d probably enjoy it. On the other side of the sliding door, Nelson does another one of his near Road Runner zips as he tells Sawicki that a situation has arisen.
I can screencap him all day long.
Up in Brooklyn, the Rohan siblings are eating their dinner quietly and awkwardly until Eilish asks Margaret if she took a boat to New York. She calls Margaret “Miss” and Beth points out she’s “not a Miss” and Eulah tells her Margaret’s this week’s episode title, Peg of Old. Margaret and Eilish talk about how Margaret lives in AC and looks after Teddy and Emily. The girls are making pleasant small talk so Eamon steps in and asks about the children’s father. Margaret says he died. Eulah sympathizes, but Eamon’s still stuck on how Margaret can afford so many luxuries if she’s a young, uneducated widow with no job and two kids. Fair question. What say you, Margaret? Nothing much.
Then he checks his watch to see that he has to get ready to work the night shift digging the new subway line. He takes the opportunity to let Margaret know that Eulah’s a seamstress, Beth’s a laundry woman and Eilish is in school only because the law makes them send her. Margaret offers to help but Eamon says they didn’t ask. AWKWARD!
Now I remember why I bang rich old guys.
Speaking of awkward, Gillian’s mincing around in her underwear in front of Jimmy. She’s dressing to go out and tells him to keep his eyes closed, not because, you know, she’s his mother and it’s creepy, but because the light is not flattering to a woman. Priorities! She has on a pretty, floral summer dress and asks Jimmy what he thinks. He thinks she looks swell but when she fishes for more compliments he tells her she never gets old in a way that sounds like “Shut up.” Gillian tries to reminisce with him about summers when he was growing up but he just sullenly points out people thought he was her brother.
Yep. Still his mother.
She keeps trying to engage him by playing Lady MacGillian and that they belong in the Commodore’s house, living the Commodore’s life but Jimmy’s brooding over the hit he ordered on Nucky. Gillian says it’s not important. Jimmy wants to call it off but Gillian says it’s too late now and to do so would show weakness to his friends. Jimmy doesn’t think that’s a good enough reason to kill Nucky but Gillian says it was done the moment he gave the order, “The rest is just bookkeeping.” Then she leans in and whispers to him to make her proud. Man, she’s brutal.
Nucky and Lucy are lounging around Nucky’s office when Nelson barrels in. Nucky asks Lucy to leave them in private and to Lucy’s credit she seems to have a pang of guilt when she tries to tell Nelson she didn’t know what else to do. Nucky, certain he has Nelson over a barrel and still ignoring that anvil over his head, holds out the brandy decanter, offering Nelson a drink saying “If ever there was a time…” but Nelson has no sense of humor so he says no.
Nucky tries to schmooze and smarms about how a child is a blessed event in a man’s life but Nelson is congenitally incapable of small talk and asks what Nucky wants. Nucky wants Nelson to kiss his ass, but Nelson refuses to play. So Nucky makes his offer/blackmail. He wants Nelson to spy on Esther Randolph for him and in return he’ll make sure Nelson is well compensated, and more importantly, won’t ask how Nelson’s afforded before. Nelson turns back into the wood statue and impossible to read so Nucky asks after Baby Van Alden, wanting to know what her name is. When Nelson says she doesn’t have a name, yet, Nucky takes one last chance to be a dick and says “You can’t go wrong picking something from the Bible.” Nucky finishes by telling Nelson to think over the offer and that whatever he gave Lucy already was a gift.
Nelson’s irate at the idea, but we don’t know what he does because we’re back in Brooklyn with the glummest Irish family, ever. They so wouldn’t have made the cut on Titanic. As Eulah and Beth finish clearing the table, Eamon says he wants to speak to Margaret privately and the girls leave. Eamon and Margaret talk about their mother’s passing and this scene is just too awkwardly blocked and distracting. Most of the scenes have featured weird staging where people pass in front of the action and the camera, but this one takes the cake where Eamon’s standing in a dark doorway and Margaret’s seen in the background behind Eamon’s crotch. Really? Anyway, Ma’s dead, buried next to Da, they’re finally not fighting. Then he guilt trips her about weeping now that it doesn’t matter. Margaret says she did what she had to do and they fight about her being selfish and him being judgmental but Eamon soon does the math and realizes that neither Teddy nor Emily were the child Margaret was pregnant with when she fled.
First of all, I didn’t even know you were a bitch.
He stops being a dick long enough for Margaret to give him money. She says it’s to replace what she stole, but he says she stole it from their mother, not him. Margaret says the money she stole was to send him to the US. Eamon wonders if that’s why she came to Brooklyn, to settle the debt, but Margaret says she wants to be with people who know her. Before they can go further down this path, though, Eilish has returned.
Drive-by and not at all gratuitous sex scene between Gillian and Charlie that I’m sure wasn’t just put in there because the writers realized this season has been sorely lacking in boobs up until this point. But they do talk about how it’s a bad idea before they go at it to move some plot along.
Don’t look the crazy in the eye, Charlie.
Nelson comes home looking for Lucy but instead hears a lovely woman’s voice singing a lullaby. Nelson’s confused but moved by the song and Michael Shannon’s amazing face actually registers joy, thinking Lucy’s bonding with the baby. But no, it’s Frieda, a neighbor Lucy wrangled into babysitting while she “ran to the store” to get some formula. Nelson retreats to the living where he notices a peculiar smell. Lucy, left a parting gift inside the victrola: A dirty diaper and the cover page to the play, A Dangerous Maid. Buck up, Nelson. Chicks dig single dads.
Back in Brooklyn. Margaret’s cleaning up after dessert and looks up to see Eamon closing the door on her. Nice. Beth wants to know about Margaret’s man back in Atlantic City. Eilish, making up a story, exposits about Nucky being mysterious and heartbroken and having minions. Margaret’s spooked that she could be so precise, but Beth sloughs it off that she just likes to make up stories like the ones she reads. Margaret offers to send Eilish more books but she’ll need Eamon’s permission, and then the women all look toward where he is like he’s the big bad and not Margaret who high-tailed it out of Ireland 12 years ago. It’s always better to be the prodigal aunt than the stay-at-home parent.
Like a baby duck imprinting on a bobcat.
Margaret leaves and the girls have a Breakfast Club moment telling her to don’t forget about them. She says it’s only three hours to Atlantic City, and has she really forgotten what it’s like to be so poor? As she walks down the stairs, Eilish runs out to tell her she was only joking about Nucky. It was in the script, but she’s sure he’s really nice. Then Margaret and Eilish have a genuinely sweet moment where Eilish is still agog that she has this grown up sister, and Margaret formally introduces herself as “Margaret Catherine Sheila Rohan” and they shake hands. Eamon sends Eilish back to the apartment to go to bed, but she takes one last moment to ask Margaret to send her books, she likes anything with horses in it. Just don’t read the unauthorized biography of Catherine the Great, little girl.
Now we come to the sweetest, most heartbreaking scene ever on Boardwalk Empire. Nelson’s home alone with Baby Van Alden, realizing he’s in this alone, rocking her, and looking through the Bible for names. Deborah…Anna…Abigail. She responds, Yay! Abigail Van Alden’s such a pretty name for such a pretty baby. Nelson looks at his baby girl and if they didn’t cast a baby who is Michael Shannon’s baby twin with her big, twitchy, emotional, earnest eyes. The healing power of sweet little babies overcomes Nelson.
She really could be his baby.
He marches into the office the next morning, wanting to speak privately with Randolph. He calls her “Mrs. Randolph” but she corrects him that it’s “Miss.” Once alone, she looks at him bemusedly and he tells her he is a married man, to which she replies “There goes my dream.” She’s too awesome, and just in time with Margaret becoming so mewly and self-pitying. Nelson gives her his back story from last season about how he knocked up Lucy and has little Abigail out of wedlock. Randolph suggests he speak to a minister but Nelson says he’s only telling her this to establish that he is, in his heart, honest. Then he gives her his entire Nucky Thompson file and tells her he’s compiled it over the last sixteen months and it includes bootlegging, gambling, vice, extortion, and murder. She wonders why he’s been sitting on this and he says Supervisor Elliot’s a dick and told him to stick to illegal alcohol. Well, he may not have called the guy a dick, but it was implied.
Randolph wants to know if he’ll testify to the accusations in the file and he will. She says it could prove useful and Nelson, happy with that, turns to leave. Randolph calls him back to tell him that they’ll sort out his domestic situation, but to keep his trap shut. It’s unseemly.
Margaret’s on her way back to the train station to go home, but since she has some more fancy clothes to show off to her poor relations she stops by one more time, under the guise of giving Eilish a book. It’s called The Girl, A Horse and a Dog and that sounds like a porno. Margaret asks if Eilish has read it, but I can’t even find a synopsis of it on Google so this book doesn’t seem like a classic of children’s literature.
This doesn’t sound like children’s literature.
Margaret wants Eilish to tell her all about the book when she’s finished. This was in the days before email and texting so Eilish doesn’t know how. Margaret suggest she write it in a letter and Eilish likes that idea, calling it a secret correspondence. Margaret says it would be a “good crack,” but this is 1921 so she’s not talking about drugs. Eilish is too Americanized to know what that means, though, and asks Margaret. She says it’s something their Ma used to say and Eilish asks what she was like then gets sad. Margaret tells the girl she can come visit her in Atlantic City whenever she’d like and meet Teddy and Emily, but Eilish is only about 11 years old and she just tries to wrap her head about being an aunt.
Eamon’s off the night shift and breaks up their moment. He sees the book Margaret gave Eilish and says that she’s keen on reading in a pleasant enough way, but Eamon’s the “bad guy” so Margaret and Eilish get squirrelly. Eilish offers to make him breakfast and he tells her to go along and read since that’s what she wants to do, anyway, and the girl marches off sullenly. Really, I know he’s stern and humorless but he’s not that awful. At least not with Eilish around.
Margaret remembers why she bangs rich old guys.
Once she’s in the building, though, Eamon gets a bit peeved with Margaret, swooping in and showing off to the girl what he can’t provide. Margaret gets her back up and says Eilish is her sister, too, but not really. Not in any substantive way since she’d only just met her the day before. Eamon suggests she’s just doing this to ease her conscience and Margaret wonders why he hates her. He says he doesn’t, he doesn’t feel much of anything for her then gives her back the money since she’s not been forthcoming about how she has so much. This finally pushes Margaret over the edge and she lights into him about how he always did what he was told, even when it meant turning his back on her but Eamon says Margaret always did what she wanted, anyway. Margaret throws down one last bitch card saying she’ll make Eilish’s life better (No interest in helping the other sisters?) but Eamon won’t budge, sending her off because there’s no one there that knows her. Margaret retreats to the taxi where she breaks down sobbing. Oh, Peg. You’re a practical woman, don’t fall apart now.
There’s no crying in organized crime.
Nucky’s home and wondering where Owen is. Lillian exposits for future reference that she doesn’t know, Margaret’s on her way home, and Katie took the children to the beach. Nucky calls the Ritz to bark at Eddie about Owen and needing a ride to the hotel, then looks ponderously into the distance.
This segues into a dank bar. Owen’s sitting alone at a table as some random walks in. Except he’s totally not random as Owen gets a completely deranged look in his eye. Owen bellies up to the bar and tries to make small talk with the guy, Del Groban, because they’re both Irish. They have a mutual acquaintance, Owen’s cousin, and Del wonders which side of the family Owen’s from. He says he’s a Cavanaugh. Del recognizes the name and they talk about a dead relation named Des who was killed by the “Black & Tans.” Del doesn’t have the patriotic fervor that Owen had and he’s just “A fight not worth my fighting.” Owen goes to buy Del a drink but Del excuses himself before it arrives. Owen watches him walk off then steals a spoon off the bar and follows him, jamming the spoon in the door. Then he pulls out a garrote and when did this become an episode of Oz?
The two men tussle for what seems like forever, first beating each other, but eventually Owen wraps the garrote around Del’s throat and strangles him, slowly, as Del’s gotten his fingers in between the wire and his throat, but he’s no match for Owen and with one final, violent tug, Del dies as Owen cuts off his finger tips and, eww. You hear the squishy, crunchy sounds of the fingers coming off. That was excessive. Owen’s disheveled and his vest is cut from Del’s knife but he’s fine, other than the fact that he’s a psychopath.
Luck of the Irish?
Over at Babette’s for Dempsey’s promotional appearance. Things are going well and Nucky’s pleased enough with himself to flirt with a Louise Brooks looking extra. She’s stylish and slinky in her drop waist dress and flirting back, which allows Nucky to see the gloomy blond guy with the Holly Hobby eyes wend his way through the crowd. Nucky, as well as Bader and Eddie in the background, is surprised and put off by Jimmy, but Jimmy shows he’s unarmed, he just has something to tell Nucky. It doesn’t matter if you’re right or wrong, you just have to make a decision. Nucky’s confused as Jimmy walks off, passing the gunman Al called in. Nucky sees the gun a moment before he shoots and holds up his hand. Nucky gets shot in the hand but before the gunman can fire off another shot, chief investigator is there and shoots the gunman. In the melee Jimmy slips out the front door and we get an overhead shot of Nucky on the ground, seemingly okay but bleeding from his hand, being tended to by Eddie and several other men.
Margaret’s finally home from New York and in a mood. She comes in through the servant’s entrance and barks for Katie or any servant. Instead she sees Owen. He offers to help her with her bags but she’s still got a stick up her ass about him and tells him not to. He calls her daft and takes her bags anyway, becoming self-conscious about his injured palm, what with the killing. They talk at cross purposes, Owen trying to be friendly and Margaret being a prig. She asks after the children and Owen says Katie took them to the beach. Margaret makes a snotty comment that that’s not really Katie’s job so Owen says Lillian sent her. Then Margaret adjusts the stick up her ass to high and tight, wondering why Owen’s not with Nucky.
Owen asks if she feels off in America, and they bond over being strangers in a strange land. But Margaret can’t not let go of her anger and she just bitches that maybe he should be at the beach with Katie. Owen wants to know what the hell she wants and she just wants one more good lay. But she doesn’t exactly say that.
Owen follows her to the bedroom and she tells him how it will be. One and done. No one knows, they never speak of it again. It starts off passionately enough as Margaret tries to rip his vest off and bites him, but once they’re on the bed she’s practically done. That was…brusque.
Make him wash his hands. We know where they’ve been.
This wasn’t my favorite episode because it really had no theme or flow. It was just scene after scene after scene. I did love Nelson with little Abigail and Jimmy crossing over and committing to taking down Nucky was necessary, but it really needed one voice guiding it, and this had too many writers pulling it in too many directions. But every premium cable show has this episode, so next week should be more focused.
Thanks for reading, and feel free to let me know your thoughts and ideas on the rest of the season.