November 5th, 2012
04:03 PM ET
[Editor's Note: This post contains spoilers for the November 4 episode of HBO's "Boardwalk Empire."]
I’ll go ahead and say that I won’t miss Billie Kent, but her loss and what led to it will have huge implications for our surviving cast.
Before we get to the explosive conclusion for Sunday's “Pony,” we have to start with Mama Jimmy, who pretty much set everything in motion.
In one of the more disturbing scenes from last night, Gillian held a funeral for
Later, she was confronted by Nucky, and she proceeded to throw her drink in his face and accuse him of killing Jimmy. For some reason Nucky denied the murder and reminded her she’s only alive because he allows it. Oh, how I wish Nucky would go ahead and finish the family off, sans Tommy of course.
Speaking of Nucky, our boy was busy as usual this episode. He met with Gaston Means and Esther Randolph, which led him to a meeting with Andrew Mellon. Turned out Mellon would be the key to Nucky bringing down a Harry Daugherty, a mutual enemy. We’re led to believe Nuck’s pitch to run Mellon’s distillery in exchange for an arrest of George Remus didn’t go well, but more on that later.
While Nucky was keeping a close eye on most of his enemies, Johnny Torrio returned to Chicago, and didn’t seem to care for the beef created by Al Capone. Instead, he left Capone and Dean O’Banion to handle their drama amongst themselves, and you got the feeling he’s more or less getting ready to hang up his full-time gangster hat - and Capone knows it.
You might have noticed O’Banion’s new “muscle” - a.k.a. George Mueller, a.k.a. Van Alden - holding up on his end of the debt, paying the Irish mob boss back for helping him get rid of that Prohee’s body. O’Banion also had Van Alden brewing whiskey out of his own house.
But what about the iron salesmen gig Van Alden had going? In last night’s best scene, Van Alden is picked on by his coworkers and snaps. One unfortunate fellow caught a hot iron to the face and the entire office got turned upside down. To complete his amazing performance, Michael Shannon let out the creepiest/most awesome smile that said, “It’s cool, I’m going gangster.”
Even better was Van Alden coming home to find his wife having made bottles upon bottles of booze with a plan to sell some of it to Norwegians in town. Yes, the Muellers are winning. This couple used to weird me out, but now I’m rooting for them.
One couple I’m not rooting for is Margaret and Owen Sleater. They spent the episode shopping for a pony, and then sat in a car while it rained and made out. Oh, and Margaret was on the hunt for diaphragms for Mrs. Shearer and, you guessed it, herself. Guess she plans on keeping Owen an undercover lover for the foreseeable future.
The future seemed on the up and up for Billie and Nucky. They got in a fight, made up and then Billie dyed her hair blonde and joined Nucky in Atlantic City.
Just before that, back at the Artemis Club, Mama Jimmy was entertaining Gyp Rossetti and his right hand man (and probably only friend at this point). Earlier, Mama Jimmy found out via Lucky Luciano (whom she bought out of Artemis) that he, Arnold Rothstein and Nucky would be meeting for dinner at Babette’s that night. She then passed the info along to Gyp, and it became obvious - to me, at least - that an assassination attempt was imminent.
Sure enough, as Nucky, Rothstein, Luciano and Billie took a stroll down the boardwalk, you could feel that something was off. Shortly thereafter, as Billie stood in front of Babette’s waiting for Nucky to wrap up a conversation, an enormous explosion literally blew her away and Babette’s. Nucky, Rothstein and Luciano all survived. Rest in Peace, Billie Kent. Nucky Thompson will surely go from whipped to vengeful now.
Judging by the previews for next week, two things seem certain, and both make me excited. One is the return of Chalky White, who has felt more like a recurring character this season than major player. And two, the all-out war between Nucky and everyone else.
It’s time for some action.
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