The Knick: Bring Up the Bodies

764099_KNICK102_122013_MC_0010Previously on The Knick: Repeated surgical failures finally got to Dr Christiansen, who committed suicide, leaving his second-in-command, Thack, in charge. He’s forced to hire a new second, a black man, which does not make him happy in the least.

We start by cutting between scenes of Cornelia’s luxurious life in a mansion and Edwards’s crappy life in a gross boardinghouse that clearly caters to black men. Cornelia is wakened by a maid, Edwards is wakened by a roach scuttling across his pillow. Edwards is bugged in line for the bathroom by some other guy with a huge attitude who wants to know where he got those fancy shoes from. Cornelia has breakfast with her parents and admits she feels a bit awkward at the Knick. Her dad reassures her that nobody, not even her brother, thinks as similarly to him as she does and he knows she can handle it. After breakfast, she’s carefully dressed by two maids who take care to make sure she looks perfect. Edwards, also looking perfect (though he clearly had to do it himself) heads into work.

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Boardwalk Empire: A Night to Remember

boardwalk-empire-devil-you-know-michael-k-williamsPreviously on Boardwalk Empire: Sally mouthed off to the wrong people and got shot, Eli and Van Alden got pinched and are being forced to work with the Feds, and Chalky busted out of jail and went to go seek revenge on Narcisse, which led to an unexpected face-to-face with Daughter Maitland and…her daughter.

We pick up right where we left off, with Chalky and Daughter staring at each other, He asks what she’s doing there and she says she has business there, which is, honestly, none of his. She warns him he has to leave. He glances at the child and she only says that the child isn’t Narcisse’s. Chalky asks whose she is and Daughter firmly says ‘she’s mine.’ She’s totally Chalky’s. One of the men who works there knocks on the door and demands to know why it’s locked. Daughter lies that she’s changing. He tells her to unlock it when she’s done, because Narcisse is going to be there soon. Chalky settles in to wait with her.

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The Knick: Welcome to Our Circus

Photo: Mary Cybulski/CinemaxOur main man, Dr Thackeray, comes around in a red-lit basement as a woman tells him it’s half past seven. He staggers out to a hansom cab and gives directions to the Knickerbocker Hospital (the ‘Knick’ of the title—and what is it with olde tyme New York and the word Knickerbocker? It loves it some knickerbocker). The cabbie points out that he’s taking the long route, but Thack doesn’t care, because he wants the extra time to shoot up in his foot to the sound of some thumping house music. Once he’s done, he laces up his shoes and is ready to face his day.

Today, he’s joining his close friend and colleague, Dr. J Christiansen, in a fairly experimental surgery. A nurse holds up a basin and Christiansen dips his beard in what I’m assuming is some sort of antiseptic solution. Thack does not have to dip his moustache, which is probably why he keeps it so closely trimmed. The patient—a heavily pregnant woman—is rolled in. She asks Christiansen to save her baby and he smiles benevolently before she’s put under. He then turns to the crowd of observers up in the peanut gallery and explains that the woman has presented with placenta previa and is now going to have a c-section. Christiansen announces that he and Thack have practiced a lot and are sure they’ve got this down. They get started, making the first incision as Thack and Christiansen narrate. The woman starts bleeding heavily and suction begins, the blood flowing into a large jar nearby. Things quickly start going pear-shaped. The nurse announces the pulse is weakening as Thack realizes the baby’s trapped in the cord. A second jar begins to fill with blood. Thack manages to remove the baby and hands it to a nurse to be intubated while he and Christiansen try desperately to control the bleeding. A third jar swiftly begins to fill. The bleeding finally stops, probably because the woman’s basically out of blood. The mother is dead, and the baby too. Well, that’s a shitty day at the office. Christiansen looks up at the full gallery and quietly says that it seems that they’re still lacking, and he hopes this has been at least a little instructive.

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Boardwalk Empire: You Don’t Know What Goes On Here

boardwalk-empire-season-5Previously on Boardwalk Empire: Young Nucky became a sort of protégé of Sheriff Lindsay. In the present, Sally got shot, Nucky came up with a solution to Margaret’s Caroline Rothstein problem, Chalky escaped from the chain gang, and Mueller got recognized by Lucky and had his whole cover blown by fellow agent Mike.

We’re done with the 1880s and have now moved to 1897. Nucky’s a young deputy sheriff dealing with a townie who takes him under the boardwalk to show him what she’s sure is a dead body. She goes on and on about all the terrible things that go on at night there as young Nucky uncovers…a dead hog. She seems almost disappointed it’s not an actual body.

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Boardwalk Empire: Hostage Situation

Boardwalk Empire What Jesus SaidPreviously on Boardwalk Empire: Nucky set about trying to find out who wants to have him killed while also making connections with Joseph Kennedy. Margaret’s boss shot himself, prompting her to pull Rothstein’s file, Chalky escaped from the chain gang with a Dunn Purnsley-esque companion, and we got a few forays back to the 1880s so we could learn absolutely nothing about Nucky that we hadn’t already found out over the past few seasons.

Chalky and his new buddy break into a home and immediately start raiding the kitchen. They must be super hungry, because Chalky actually cracks some eggs into a glass and drinks them down. Ick. They wander around, checking the place out (it’s a nice house) and Chalky asks Milton if this is the right house. Chalky wants to leave, but a young woman appears and they ask her for cash, promising to leave as soon as they have it. They all say that in these scenarios, don’t they? She claims not to have any, and lets slip that someone else is in the house with her. After a few moments, her mother comes down the stairs and seems startled by the sight of two strange black men in her home.

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Boardwalk Empire: Whatever I Had, You Would Have Taken

Boardwalk-Empire-Season-4-Episode-12-Farewell-Daddy-Blues-600x377Previously on Boardwalk Empire: Chalky reconnected with his old mentor, only to have the guy get shot. Eli persuaded Nucky (who may or may not be suspicious of his brother) to have a sit-down with all the players from New York and Tampa, which will allow Knox to move in with serious charges, and Gillian unwittingly confessed to first degree murder.

A not-at-all symbolic storm is brewing off the coast while masked men approach the Albatross, taking Nucky’s men hostage. Nucky is apparently oblivious as he gets some Spanish lessons over the phone from Sally. She asks him what his plans are going forward and he tells her that, after today, he’s not going to make plans. Today, however, he’s doing the last thing he needs to do.

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Boardwalk Empire: Nowhere to Hide

www.indiewire.comPreviously on Boardwalk Empire: Chalky went on the run, and Nucky went into the heroin business with Masseria and Narcisse.

Chalky and Daughter are being driven past a sign for Havre le Grace, through pitch-black woods. Chalky asks how ‘Oscar’ is doing and hears he’s ok, for an old dude. They pull up at a dilapidated mansion and the two men driving them tell them to wait while they go inside. While they’re alone, Chalky tells Daughter how he came to know Oscar: as a kid, Chalky got into a fight and was seriously beaten up. Oscar cleaned him up, gave him a job, and went on to teach Chalky everything he now knows. A light comes on inside the house and another man comes out and tells Chalky and Daughter to come on in. They get out, hesitantly, which is understandable considering the day or two they’ve had. Chalky asks the man who he is and is introduced to Winston, AKA Scrapper.

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Boardwalk Empire: I’m Getting Married in the Morning

boardwalk-empire-marriage-and-hunting-michael-shannon-600x400Previously on Boardwalk Empire: Chalky figured out that Dunn was allied with Narcisse and dealing H, and during their tussle Daughter Maitland killed Dunn. Rothstein started showing signs of a serious gambling problem, and Richard returned to town.

Van Alden’s under the sink in his kitchen, trying to fix something, unsuccessfully. His wife is not pleased. Van Alden is not pleased with his crying son and bleeding hand. The missus complains about the house and mocks Van Alden’s job, making it clear she knows he’s no florist. She basically tells him to step up and get more cash.

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Boardwalk Empire: A Vague Feeling of Unease

be-ep-7-1Previously on Boardwalk Empire: Knox had trouble getting J Edgar on board with his notion of a nationwide criminal network; Daughter Maitland had an affair with Chalky while Nucky started one of his own with Sally down in Florida, and Al vowed revenge after his brother, Frank, was gunned down.

The camera irises out on a policeman reading about the Leopold and Loeb case. Al walks right up to him, shoots him point-blank in the head, and hops in a getaway car. Ok, then. Guess that’s one way to contest a parking ticket.

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John Adams: Unnecessary War

Previously on John Adams: John discovered that the role of vice president is pointless and thankless, but luckily he’s rescued from it by being elected president.

John’s strolling down the streets of Philadelphia with Jefferson, telling his VP that the French have started capturing American ships, and even tortured the captain of one. Jefferson essentially tells him that this is all John’s fault, because of that treaty with England. John doesn’t even address that. He’s worried about being drawn into a war with their former ally or with England, when America’s still establishing itself. He wants to send Jefferson to France to see what he can do. Jefferson mildly says there are some who’ll say he’s just trying to remove his chief rival to the presidency. And by “some” I think he means “me.” Jefferson refuses to go to France. Clearly, politicians were putting their own careers ahead of the best interests of the country from its very founding. How sad.

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