It was an eventful week in Atlantic City. Nucky puts several plans in motion, all of which seem like good ideas at the time but will likely come back to bite him in the ass. Because liquor, out-of-state hookers and sticks of dynamite rarely end well. He also looks to Rothstein to help open some ports to bring his liquor into Atlantic City, and working with Rothstein always turns out well. For Rothstein. On the plus side, we get a better idea of exactly how Sleater makes people stop. It’s a lot more permanent than just head butting. And Fleming proves himself useful.
On the other side of the fence, Jimmy and Mickey are flush with the liquor the Coast Guard confiscated from McCoy and look to distribute it elsewhere. Jimmy, Richard and Mickey go into Philadelphia to meet with William Forsythe basically playing William Forsythe only named Manny Horvitz. Despite his menschy demeanor and prosaic front as a butcher, he’s still spooky and wielding a bloody knife so after a meeting where he tries to feed the boys some liver and onions he seals their new deal with a threat to cut Jimmy up and put him in his freezer if Jimmy crosses him. Oh, how far he’s come since John Goodman birthed him out of the mud.
Up in New York, Rothstein decides he’s still not done letting Luciano and Lansky know who’s boss so when he makes a surprise visit to Lansky’s office on the Lower East Side he informs the two men that they’re being demoted to muscle and hooch babysitters. They take this news as well as expected, but agree to do what they’re told. Benny makes a brief appearance, but he’s not too crazy.
Margaret’s conflicted all over the place. Acting like the lady of the house and distrusting the staff. Squirreling money away by the fistfuls. Questioning Sleater. And basically calling Nucky a lying drunk to the staff.
Chalky’s out on bail but isn’t getting any respect. Not from Nucky who thinks Chalky should just be grateful he’s out of jail. Not from the African American community who are tired of him making promises they don’t think he can keep. Not from his son who is a little too wise to the fact that he’s not that educated. And most sadly, not from his wife who doesn’t want to make his favorite dish for dinner because it’s too “common.”
Gillian just continues to get crazier by the week, but this week it’s for a good cause. And goes horribly, horribly wrong. But it gives us more insights into exactly how her mind works. And she’s a cunning woman who should not be trifled with, especially if you are at her mercy. Eli is still ineffectual and bitter. And Jimmy is still practically dead inside with only his occasional brooding and bouts of PTSD to remind him he’s not.
Van Alden’s double life is coming apart as both his agents and Rose start wondering what he does all day, why he’s hanging around Mickey the Roach and why isn’t he staying at his boarding house anymore. The agents decide to step out and make their own bust of a known bootlegger’s still but it goes gruesomely awry.
And in the most touching development, Richard and Angela bond is a way that probably broke Tumblr once and for all.
Full recap will be up in a few days, but until then, this week’s fun facts are courtesy of Anthony Laciura, aka Eddie Kessler. As shown on the episode, he has a lovely singing voice because before he was an actor he was an opera singer who’s performed at the Met over 800 times. The gold watch he carries, and that was featured in the premiere, originally belonged to Lou Kessel, Nucky Johnson’s real-life valet and the character Eddie’s based on. Laciura worked closely with his family to create Eddie and on Laciura’s 60th birthday they gave him Kessel’s watch.