Monday, December 5, 2011

Boardwalk Empire: Under God’s Power, She Flourishes

“You’re tearing me apart!” – Rebel Without a Cause

Flashback to when Angela and Jimmy were first dating. Ah, the lust of youth. She was a waitress and slightly homely. Seeing Jimmy as a Princeton student is not as strange as I thought it would be. His professor seemed like a nice role model, with the usual result for Jimmy. A lot of references to one being hungry and not being able to feed oneself.  Sounds like Jimmy. Unfortunately, nothing seems to work out for him. I like the imagery of the young soldiers bounding up after Jimmy . . . the war is nipping at his heels.

Gillian came back into Jimmy’s life when he was doing well at Princeton. I like that Jimmy grimaced when he had his drink, but Gillian didn’t.  Gillian does get close to Jimmy’s professor and then the professor gets too close to Gillian.  Fighting someone you feel compelled to still call Mr. So and So is not going to help you. Jimmy had a chance to walk, but he didn’t take it. And Gillian was disgustingly pleased. She really enjoys keeping him emotionally hostage. So far, it seems like every time she comes to town, it ruins Jimmy’s life. And, ugh. A drunken mother and son undressing one another in a darkened room. So, so, so creepy. I couldn’t even watch it. The inappropriateness could be a product of her being raped at the age of 13 by a 40 year old.

OH, MY EYES!!! MY EYES!!! WTF???!!! I’m surprised that Jimmy didn’t run into machine gun fire on purpose during the war. Or gas himself. Jay-sus! “I had my pleasures. That’s all that matters.” Man, that quote from Gillian now has an added layer of sociopathic meaning. Cut later to current day Jimmy getting high on his own supply after hearing about Angela. I think heroin’s his only option at this point. A biological father that’s a rapist. A surrogate father that you betrayed. A mother that likes to fuck you. Get all of the heroin you can, sweetie. Crying is good, too. Cry until the jmen in the white coats come take you away. I, for one, will not judge you.

Nucky is going over his case with his new lawyer. Nucky’s manservant just happened to be a witness to the drowning of the Jewish prohibition agent killed by Van Alden. Thank goodness Nucky’s lawyer allowed the man to speak.  Nucky’s getting a little too tense. It’s making him shortsighted. He’s forgetting that people and the information they have is the best capital. He used to be such a good listener!

Alden’s story about his parentage sheds some light on his personality. His father was one of those religious folks who followed a preacher who predicted the rapture would occur in the late nineteenth century. He sold the farm, plummeted the family into poverty, and was brokenhearted when the Jesus didn’t come on down. This somehow led to him not enjoying his son’s presence. I don’t get it, but it explains Van Alden a little better, although wouldn’t that make him less religious. And what happened his self-flagellation? It added a nice layer of terror to his creepiness.

Emily gets her leg braces. Not as fun as when Forrest Gump received his. She couldn’t even stand in the braces. Is it just me, or does the priest look like a much less attractive Ted Kennedy.  The priest tells Margaret a parable and then makes some sort of request. Any request a priest makes that’s slightly vague gives me the heebie-jeebies.

I like Nucky’s reaction to the priest’s parable. Really, why didn’t they just choke up on the spoons? We now know that Nucky is an agnostic/fatalist. Why does Margaret seem surprised? I hope that Margaret takes Nucky’s threat seriously when she suggests she’s going to answer the subpoena and testify against Nucky. For a second I thought she was going to mention her two pumps from Owen.  Thank goodness she has a sliver of her old intelligence left. Phew! However, if at any other time of the show the ADA were to go toe to toe with Margaret, I would’ve given the odds to Margaret, but right now . . . I’m worried for Nucky.

Gillian is back in true form after being relegated to non-existent after the Commodore made his recovery. She gives the hapless deputy a quick and neat story to tie up Angela’s murder. She should’ve just said that Harrow is a war buddy instead of a simpleton. Harrow’s a bit sensitive right now. I worry about him, but he came through for Jimmy at the end. I hope Jimmy doesn’t do to Harrow what he thinks Nucky did to him.

Lucky Luciano, Al Capone, and the crew finally figure out that they need to let Jimmy deal with his own problems and hang him out to dry. They then push Doyle a bit too far. Much like Hallorahn, he’s the type that, if pushed too hard, will take action. He’s a criminal Hallorahn. And he does. Doyle meets with Van Alden and proposes a plan for a fake raid by the feds. Van Alden gets half of the liquor money and Doyle gets the other half. Van Alden turns him down.

Eli is between a rock and a hard place and that ADA is doing a good job of putting the screws to the Thompson brothers.  Enough so that Eli decides to testify against Nucky. Nucky tries to talk to Margarget about his finances in case he goes to jail and in preparation of his trial. Margaret pretty much gets what she always wanted: security. Except now she makes it seem like a terrible burden.

Owen is being his usual creeper self. “Do you think about me?” Their love scene was so lacking in warmth, pleasure or anything of a sexual nature. I still don’t know why it happened? Margaret felt like a worthless whore for a moment and wanted to feel it the whole way? I’m sure Margaret’s thoughts lean toward regret, disgust, and disappointment, if she thinks of him and their encounter at all.  Sucks that Owen’s lover, Margaret’s maid, overheard.   

Ms. Randolph goes after Van Alden for the drowning of the prohibition agent with the help of Nucky’s lawyer. Van Alden decides to shoot a federal agent and flee. I think Nucky’s sucked the intelligence out of everyone else in this show.

Gillian downplays Angela’s death and Jimmy starts choking her. Totally understandable. The Commodore then goes after Jimmy. Despite his recent stroke, he’s got the old man strength going for him. Jimmy finally succeeds in killing someone. What a fucking Greek tragedy this is. And how good are Gillian’s wiles that every man in her life would kill for her? Jimmy should’ve killed her and then himself, too.  And, look, the heir to the Greek throne, little Tommy.  I wonder if Gillian gave Jimmy that same speech after she had sex with him. Blech.

This was such an intense episode. They could’ve ended the season with it. The season finale better bring it.  

Favorite quote: “The beginning’s over. The end hasn’t come yet.” - Nucky

This show really makes me feel like I live in a Norman Rockwell painting.  

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