Boardwalk Empire: Mitzvah

The camera pans past the waves washing up on shore while exceptionally sappy old timey music plays. We catch up to a young couple—a man and a woman, walking along the beach, all cute and cuddly. The woman playfully runs away to splash in the water, and the camera spins around the man to reveal it’s Two Face, but he’s now got one whole face—no sign of his war wounds at all. He watches the woman fondly, but then she turns and starts screaming in horror.

In non-dream world, TF is startled awake by screaming, all right, but it’s poor little Emily, Margaret’s tiny daughter, doing it, because he’s asleep on her mother’s couch with no mask on and his awful wounds out in the open for all to see. Ok, there are a few things wrong with this. Most important, why the hell is he staying here? Nucky owns an entire floor of a hotel, he couldn’t find somewhere to put a cot for this guy? Or maybe get him a room in one of the other hundred or so hotels in Atlantic City? Or maybe have him stay with Jimmy? And if he must stay at Margaret’s, why is he sleeping on the couch? She’s got three bedrooms, she can’t have the kids bunk together for a little while to avoid this exact issue?

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The Tudors: These Bloody Days

Previously on The Tudors: Henry got all hot for Jane Seymour, which put her social-climbing older brother, Edward, into a sort of Machiavellian overdrive. Henry almost died after falling off his horse during a joust, sending Anne into a panic and allowing her father and brother to dream of being kings in all but name during little Elizabeth’s minority. Henry recovered, Anne miscarried, and Henry decided he’s done with wife #2.

Ok, things start off super creepy—three physicians are presenting Henry with the remains of his and Anne’s miscarried baby. It’s covered up, in a bowl on the table in front of Henry, and the lead physician is telling the king that the fetus appeared to be male, but it was deformed, so the miscarriage was something of a blessing in disguise. Henry lifts the corner of the cloth covering the body and grimaces, then waves the doctors and attendants away. One of his footmen thoughtfully takes the baby in a bowl with him. Ick.

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Boardwalk Empire: Tete a Tete

Nucky and the boys are gathered at Eli’s bedside, examining police records and mugshots for the D’Alessio brothers. One of the cronies sighs that it’s easy to forget faces and facts in the confusion of a holdup, but Eli’s sure the guys in the picture are the ones who robbed the casino. George O’Neill, the guy whose route Eli picked up last week (and who was also the one who got robbed on the boardwalk not so long ago) picks up one of the pictures and identifies the subject as the kid who spit on him, thus precipitating said robbery. Halloran, Eli’s right-hand-man, helpfully informs Nucky that the gang they’re looking at is the D’Alessios, “Dagos out of Philly.” They’ve been busy, robbing restaurants and shooting customers and waiters. All George cares about is that the kid called him fat. Nucky gives him an identical glare to the one I’m giving him for saying something so stupid. Eli points out that these guys are pretty violent, so George got off fairly easy.

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The Tudors: Love For Sale

Previously on The Tudors: Katherine died and Anne got pregnant again, which I’m sure will end quite happily for her, right? Right? Also, Henry met the lovely blonde Jane Seymour and invited her to court and Cromwell started busting up monasteries in a big way.

Jane’s made it to court and is being escorted through that great hall where everyone hangs out by a young man, presumably her brother, Edward. He leads her to the door of Anne’s rooms and she goes in. One of the other ladies looks her up and down and snottily informs her that Anne’s on her way and Jane’s not to say a word until she’s given leave. What a friendly workplace!

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Boardwalk Empire: Mustering the Troops

Eli, dressed in a suit instead of his customary uniform, sits expectantly at a desk—Nucky’s desk, no less—staring at the door. We can dimly hear the sound of people talking on the other side of it. Eli pushes a few things around on the desk to kill time, and finally the door opens and one of his officers comes in with the news that the voice he was just talking to was not some VIP dropping in for a face-to-face, but a drunk guy from the GM convention who got off on the wrong floor. Eli’s disappointed to learn nobody’s come to transact business, even though he’s in charge of things while Nucky’s away. He slumps back in the chair and orders the officer—evidently his replacement Eddie—to get him a cup of coffee. While the officer scurries to do so, Eli grouses that he could do Nucky’s job—the gladhanding and bad-joke-telling—pretty well himself.

As the officer sets the coffee down, someone finally knocks on the door, and in comes one of Nucky’s collections guys (he looks vaguely familiar, but I don’t recall a name). The guy’s surprised for a second to see Eli there, but then remembers that Nucky’s in Chicago. Eli asks, a little harshly, what the guy wants, and the guy explains that his daughter’s being fitted for her leg braces on Friday (polio victim, I’m guessing) and he was hoping to take the day off to be there. Eli tells him it’s ok and the guy leaves.

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The Tudors: Golden World

Previously on The Tudors: Anne got more paranoid about Henry having affairs, and became convinced that she can’t give Henry a son as long as Katherine and Mary are alive. Henry started to get tired of Anne’s jealousy. Cromwell started spreading the good word on the Reformation.

We start off with Anne taking a nice ride through the woods, where she comes across Wyatt at the head of a group of strange-looking, cloaked figures. He offers her an apple, which she waves away, smiling pleasantly, and the figures part, bowing to her, revealing another figure at the far end of the path they’ve created. The other figure, which has long, gray hair, stands with its back to Anne. When she reaches it, it turns, and it’s an old woman, in a white gown, with a ruff and a cross around her neck. Anne starts to look around, disconcerted, and finds her father. He takes her hand and leads her a little ways away. She turns again and she’s alone, but then the figures reappear and advance on her and lock her in a sort of iron maiden-looking thing and put it on a raft, which is dragged down the river by early Celts, or something. Definitely not people dressed like Anne’s contemporaries. Mary’s face suddenly fills Anne’s limited field of vision, and then the raft is set on fire as Anne screams.

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Boardwalk Empire: Love, Love Me Do

We start off with a close up of someone reading the Chicago Daily Tribune, so we know where we are. The paper is folded up by the reader, and now we see we’re in a diner with a really cool stained glass frieze around the upper edge of the windows. A police officer sitting at the counter turns as another customer enters, sits down, and orders his usual—corned beef hash and eggs. The cop eyes the man (whom I didn’t actually recognize, but we learn soon enough this is the guy who slashed up Pearl), then gets up and makes his way to a nearby phone booth.

At Torrio’s, Al’s on the phone, presumably speaking with the cop from the diner. Al thanks him, calls him a credit to the force, and hangs up before making his way into a nearby room, where Jimmy’s laid out on a sofa, nursing his aching leg. Al cheers him up with the news that Pearl’s attacker’s currently enjoying a nice breakfast in a diner, and apparently does so quite often. Jimmy takes this news fairly emotionlessly.

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Boardwalk Empire: Arrangements

Out on the Boardwalk, everyone’s going about their normal business, including one of Nucky’s guys, who’s making his regular collections. As he’s crossing a name off the list (which only has one more name left on it, so he’s clearly near the end and probably toting plenty of cash), some young punk type comes up and starts insulting him. The guy tells the kid to get lost, but the kid hocks a loogie in the guy’s face and takes off, leading the guy on a merry chase down the boardwalk. He runs through an archway, and as the collector follows him, someone comes running out from behind a large poster and lays him out flat with a club to the head. The attacker grabs the dropped bag of cash and leaves our poor guy lying stunned on the boardwalk, watching the birds wheeling overhead.

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Boardwalk Empire: Nuck O’ The Irish

And we’re back! Sorry about the delay, folks, but honeymoons don’t take themselves (thankfully) and thank you notes don’t write themselves (sadly). But now all that’s behind me and I’m ready to sink my teeth back into the glorious world of Prohibition-era Atlantic City. Let’s get to it!

In the cool light of early dawn, Margaret’s peacefully sleeping with the kids when she’s awakened by a slight ruckus outside. She gets up, goes to the window, and watches some men rolling barrels out of a truck and into a garage behind her house. One man, more well dressed than the others, takes a glass of something from one of the barrels and tastes it.

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Boardwalk Empire: Fairy Tale

I have to start by confessing I seem to have made a mistake. Since the actors playing Gillian and Jimmy are less than a decade apart in age (and look it on the show), I assumed Gillian was Jimmy’s stepmother, but it seems that’s not the case. According to someone actually involved with the show, Gillian really did give birth to Jimmy around the age of 14. Which is so squicky I didn’t even really consider it. I hope you’ll forgive me the slip up.

On with episode four. In snowy Chicago, Capone makes his way into a fairly quiet building. It seems to be pretty late—employees are cleaning up as he heads upstairs, passing a scantily dressed woman and a customer on his way up. They don’t give him a second glance, but maybe that’s because he has the sense to wait until he’s alone on the second floor to pull out a pistol. He quietly enters a room where a young woman and man are sleeping naked together. The woman wakes up and jumps when she sees the gun, but Capone playfully gestures for her to be quiet. He levels the gun at the sleeping man’s head, pulls the trigger, and fires into the pillow right next to the guy. The poor guy jumps a mile and tumbles out of bed, amazingly not soiling himself, as Capone cackles gleefully. Dick. The sleeping man raises his head, now awake and angry, and we see it’s Jimmy. He asks Capone just what in the hell he thinks he’s doing, as Capone continues to laugh and says he was just playing. Double dick. Jimmy tells him he can’t hear out of one ear now and Capone just tells him to go back to sleep. Yeah, that seems likely.

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