“BAD FOR BUSINESS”
Note: The following review goes into detail about the episode. SPOILER ALERT!
One of the things I was most looking forward to coming into this final season was seeing how the show would come full circle, tying up everybody’s storylines. Margaret hasn’t been a one of the most popular characters on the show to say the very least, but she has been an important presence who has been involved since the very beginning. Having her linked to Rothstein was an interesting way of keeping her in the story after she left Nucky, and it was this link that also gave her a route back into the main storyline as we get ever closer to the finale. She now finds herself owing a lot of money to Rothstein’s wife, so it makes sense that she’d turn to Nucky, but considering his own issues, he probably won’t be thrilled to find out the reason for her visit.
We actually got to see how Nucky’s enterprises were shaping up in Atlantic City, and suffice it to say, things aren’t going as well as they once were. The crowds aren’t as glamorous and none other than Mickey Doyle is in charge of the club, something which shows how little of Nucky’s “friends” remain. Nucky’s attempts to garner support from Joe Kennedy led to some intriguing scenes where Kennedy brought into question exactly why Nucky wants to continue his alcohol-based ventures. The contrast between Kennedy with his family of eight children and Nucky whose family has left him was quite striking, and it might even lead to a change of heart for Nucky going into the final episodes.
Doctor Narcisse returned this week in a short scene where he squared off against Luciano and Bugsy Siegel. It seems like Luciano and Lansky’s powerplay is gathering steam as they put the squeeze on Narcisse’s Harlem operation, which of course doesn’t sit very well with him. With Narcisse now coming into conflict with Luciano and Lansky, there’s a chance we may see an “enemy of my enemy” type situation between him and Nucky, a situation I definitely welcome. Things will probably escalate quite quickly now that one of his brothels has been attacked, so keep an eye on this story.
Chalky returned this week, as himself and the bumbling Milton found their way into a house in search of some cash. Out of this week’s storylines, this one was probably the least interesting to me. From the very first moment they encountered the woman and her daughter in the house, I had a pretty good idea where it was going. The material was still quite good though, with Michael K. Williams killing it once again as this newer, more understated Chalky, still tortured over the death of his daughter. Chalky violently killing Milton to save the young girl may have been predictable, but it was still a satisfyingly abrupt end to their partnership. I have no idea where Chalky goes from here, but I would definitely love to see him make it back to Atlantic City.
Another interesting occurrence this week came in the form of Mickey recruiting a few homeless men to do some menial work relating to Nucky’s bootlegging operation. A teenage boy ended up talking his way into the job after he pleaded with Mickey. He certainly seemed quite keen to earn his spot on the job, and my first thought was that he was a plant for the feds. However, there is another slight possibility in play here, and it is the boy could in fact be Tommy Darmody. He did look a little bit like Jimmy, and Tommy would be around fifteen at this stage of the story. This could turn out to be way of the mark, but a bit of Darmody revenge would sure be a hell of a way to bring the series full circle.
Boardwalk Empire continues its solid start to this final season with another great episode. While the Chalky scenes may have been a little bit predictable, they remained watchable and everything else moved the story along nicely. The Nucky scenes may not remain too interesting if they continue as conversations about the alcohol business, but I’m sure things will start moving faster as we get to the halfway point in the season. With Margaret and Narcisse firmly back in the equation, Nucky’s life won’t be getting any easier anytime soon.
Will the mystery homeless boy turn out to be a brand new character, or could he possibly be a vengeful Tommy Darmody? Let us know in the comments below.
*We do not comment on anything relating to previews for the next episode and beyond.
The Night Of: “The Call of the Wild” Review
Vice Principals: “The Foundation of Learning” Review
The Night Of: “Ordinary Death” Review
Joe Hill’s ‘The Fireman’ Review
How Speedrunning Changed My Perception of Games
Vice Principals: “Circles” Review
The Night Of: “Samson and Delilah” Review
‘Batman: The Killing Joke’ Review
Vice Principals: “Run for the Money” Review
The Night Of: “The Season of the Witch” Review