'Boardwalk Empire': Party like it's 1923
September 17th, 2012
03:45 PM ET

'Boardwalk Empire': Party like it's 1923

[This post contains spoilers for the September 16 episode of HBO's "Boardwalk Empire," as well as events that occurred in season 2.]

It’s New Year’s Eve in 1922, and in “Boardwalk” time a year-and-a-half has passed.

For those who were still mourning the loss of a certain someone’s mug in Atlantic City, Sunday’s season 3 premiere, “Resolution,” gave enough new faces and plotlines to speed the grieving process.

(Yes, Jimmy’s dead. Moving on.)

To start, there’s Gyp Rosetti (Bobby Cannavale), a New York gangster by way of Italy who, en route to Atlantic City, kills a Good Samaritan for insulting his intelligence when it comes to automotive troubleshooting. As we come to know, Gyp doesn’t do rules. “Boardwalk” has needed a cold-blooded bad guy to give things a jolt.

Nucky, meanwhile, is with Manny Horvitz, Owen Slater and Mickey Doyle interrogating a thief. The robber and his accomplice hit one of Doyle’s warehouses, and even after revealing his accomplice to be a man named Rowland Smith, Nucky has Manny put a bullet in his head. Nucky later asks Manny to find and kill Smith - if he can do that, he can have a piece of the liquor business separate from Doyle.

Of course, Doyle is still an idiot. Sooner or later, Doyle could cost Nucky more than just some stolen booze.

At home, Margaret – a.k.a., the new Mrs. Thompson - is prepping for an Egyptian-themed party for Nucky, and she seems to have no issues ordering the help around as the de facto First Lady of Atlantic City.

Jimmy's mother Gillian is now heading up a brothel while Richard Harrow (was that a fresh new mask?) looks after his orphaned son Tommy. I wonder when Richard will start looking to avenge his friend’s death. I also wonder when the Emmy folks will start blessing Jack Huston with some nominations.

In a meeting with Shooter McGavin, I mean, Harry Daughtery, the attorney general tells Nucky that the $40,000 he’s paying for protection will have to go in cash to a middle man. With all of the scandalous news in the headlines, Nucky questions whether Daughtery’s help is working.

Not to mention, Nucky’s big land project is now St. Theresa’s Catholic hospital. Thanks to the generous donation Margaret signed over to the church at the end of last season, she’s now a board member. During a tour of the facilities a woman miscarries right in front of Margaret and others, and Mrs. Thompson is later told by another doctor that actual access to and education of prenatal care is nonexistent. The feminist in Margaret is ready to spring into action.

On the Boardwalk, Tommy and Richard are arguably the cutest and weirdest surrogate father-son combo I’ve seen on TV in some time. When Tommy refers to Gillian and not Angela as his mother, Richard’s face shows a slight look of disappointment.

And speaking of disappointing, Van Alden’s now talking to himself in the mirror about being better at life, which he needs because he’s now a door-to-door iron salesman. He lives in Cicero, Illinois with his once live-in nanny and now wife, Sigrid. Sad and hilarious.

At the Thompsons' party, we’re introduced to flapper Billie Kent via Eddie Cantor. She’s pretty much Lucy 2.0, and Nucky seems to like what he sees. (Gyp shows up to the party with Regina, the dog of the Good Samaritan he beat to death.)

Over at her brothel, Gillian doesn’t like what she’s hearing when Richard starts to talk about Angela and her paintings. She later tells Richard if he wants to stay in the house then he’ll play by her rules and not bring up those ghosts of season 2.

In Chicago we meet Dean O’Banion, a North side boss having issues with staying in his territory, or so he tries to tell Johnny Torrio. Al Capone calls O’Banion’s BS and the two get into it. Torrio tells Capone to calm down, but when O’Banion takes shots at the former’s deaf son, all bets are off. Torrio heads for Italy and Capone promises to get his revenge.

Being the live wire that he is, Capone visits O’Banion’s flower shop to follow up on the lovely chat from earlier when Van Alden walks in and inadvertently keeps the latter alive. O’Banion offers to buy Van Alden’s irons, and says if he ever needs help give him a call. Van Alden’s future might be the one I’m least certain about for this new season - it could go anywhere.

Back at the Thompsons, Owen makes a pass at Margaret, and I get the feeling soon their night of passion last season will catch up to them. Margaret also confronts Dr. Landau and demands that more be done in the hospital to help the women. Dr. Landau feels insulted, and tells Nucky to watch Margaret and to keep her in check.

Meanwhile, Nucky’s got his mind on a new plan, and he meets with Gyp, Arnold Rothstein, Lucky Luciano, Meyer Lanksy and George Remus. He’s only selling his liquor to Rothstein, and from now on, everyone can get their liquor through him.

This sets off Gyp, who goes around the table insulting everyone, including Nucky. May I just say that this guy could already be on his way to packing more zingers into an episode than Sawyer from “Lost” and Aaron Sorkin’s “Newsroom” dialogue combined. “Nobody here can take a joke.” Classic.

After all the guests have gone, Nucky confronts Margaret about the hospital and the land, and tells her that she needs back off. He heads over to the Ritz, where Ms. Kent, who's clearly known Nucky for a while, is in bed waiting for him. As I said before, Lucy 2.0.

At his home, Manny preps for the killing of Rowland Smith while having champagne with his wife. But when he heads out of his house, Richard greets him with a shotgun to the face to avenge Angela’s death. Looks like Richard has already started the "Revenge for Jimmy" campaign. Will he be bold enough to go after Nucky?

In bed alone, Margaret reads the paper about Carrie Duncan’s historic flight, and the next morning heads to the beach where she watches as Duncan flies over the crowd.

It seems this season aims to up the ante on the gangster element of the show, at least more so than the previous two seasons. From the looks of last night’s premiere, that’s not a bad thing, and it's definitely more entertaining. Bring on Gyp the villain.

But, with that said, where's Chalky White?

Did you watch? What storylines and characters are you most excited about for season 3?

soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. Have an amazing day everyone!

    OTT day too all!!!!

    February 11, 2013 at 6:08 am | Report abuse |
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    nice post.added to my bookmarks cheers breast actives reviews http://baplusplus.tumblr.com/

    February 11, 2013 at 6:05 am | Report abuse |
  3. Dhow Cruise Dinner in Dubai

    IThey dont usualy go for small breasted wenches but that Meg Chambers Steedle gave me the right horn.

    January 30, 2013 at 3:24 am | Report abuse |
  4. Mike

    i go for big breasted women...the bigger the better.

    September 18, 2012 at 11:11 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Babette Hughes

    My father was a Jewish bootlegger who was murdered during a turf war during the Prohibition. I can attest to Boardwalk Empire being very authentic for today's television.

    September 18, 2012 at 5:18 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Vainian Thicke

    I dont usualy go for small breasted wenches but that Meg Chambers Steedle gave me the right horn.

    September 18, 2012 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |
  7. Agent(hacker specialist)

    To start, there’s Gyp Rosetti (Bobby Cannavale), a New York gangster by way of Italy who, en route to Atlantic City, kills a Good Samaritan for insulting his intelligence when it comes to automotive troubleshooting.

    gotta watch troubleshooting.

    September 18, 2012 at 5:41 am | Report abuse |
  8. Michelle

    great show

    September 18, 2012 at 5:36 am | Report abuse |
  9. jeffry

    BWE's first episode of a new season set the stage for an intense and ruffian season 3. Missing James Darmody, but their is a substantial amount of other character potential in this show. Go Richard Harrow Go!

    September 17, 2012 at 11:42 pm | Report abuse |
  10. HugeFan

    Van Alden referred to the baby as "he" - So he now has a son with the nanny to go along with the daughter (abigail) he had with Lucy. (The nanny was holding the baby boy and Abigail was on the other side of the room).

    September 17, 2012 at 10:53 pm | Report abuse |
  11. annade

    If this takes place a year and a half later, why did Van Alden's baby not age? Shouldn't they be walking/talking by now?

    September 17, 2012 at 9:40 pm | Report abuse |
  12. POKA

    Um...has anyone else noticed that Tommy has grown up really fast in a year and a half, and yet Van Alden's baby (Abigail) is still a baby?!

    September 17, 2012 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Elise

    They didn't even have cellphones back then. And I think they used Beta VCR tape things. The 1920s is mega lame.

    September 17, 2012 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Elise

    It really is pretty boring. Maybe something my great gramma might like. I guess if you were alive back then maybe you think it is the cat's meow or something.

    September 17, 2012 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
  15. grassisbrown

    CHALKY WHITE is very enjoyable and my hubby and I love to see his character appear... So true to African-Americans at the time – boycott, labor, union, class divide... It's our way to decompress... HBO, you've done a swell job at staying true to the characters... However, James' mama is a lunatic and I hope you don't develop her into being her grandsons' child molester... SHE IS ICKY! gross! Oedipus syndrome --ewwwwwwwwwwwww. She has turned that man's house into a dirty ho' salon... lmbo!

    September 17, 2012 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
  16. btd5504

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say you, Michelle, are not a very "smart" person.

    September 17, 2012 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
  17. corvette gal

    One of the best series on television. Hated the Sopranos, but love this because it stays true to the 20's, with lots of interest in things such as women's rights, prohibition, the criminal element, etc. Just saying, has anyone noticed that even in the 20's our politicians were corrupt.....not much has changed regarding that fact.

    September 17, 2012 at 7:06 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Isabelle

    Shooter Mcgavin!!! Lmao. While I miss jimmy, I enjoyed season 3's opener. Looking forward to seeing more of Richard Harrow.

    September 17, 2012 at 7:02 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Jody38

    I caught a couple of episodes from the Boardwalk marathon this weekend. I don't watch this show but can someone please tell me what the heck happened to the guy with the half face mask of himself. That dude was extremely creepy looking. What happened to him??

    September 17, 2012 at 6:45 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Dell

    I agree. It is a pretty miserably bad show. Those old cars don't have airconditioning and everything looks made out of scratchy itchy wool. It looks like a horrible time to have been alive.

    September 17, 2012 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thomas

      I agree with you 100 percent. Poorly made with infantile scripts. The potty humor gets old after a while. Plus the 1920s esque setting lacks realness. When the VW microbus drive by in one of the scenes I thought it odd.

      September 17, 2012 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
  21. ronnie

    The best show on television, hands down. Thank you HBO !

    September 17, 2012 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joyce Gibbs

      Totally agree. I was afraid that after Jimmy's character was killed off, the series might not be renewed. I still disagree with that decision, but it will be interesting to watch Richard take his revenge this season. Really not comfortable with watching Jimmy's mother become her grandson's "mother", so hope her character is dealt with sooner than later. Margaret's character has really evolved into a strong, independent woman who "made a deal with the devil" in order to provide for her children. Will be interesting to watch and see how far Nucky let's her "spread her wings" before he goes gangster on her too. I love the 1920s costumes and scenery which are so meticulous in their detail. This series is much more entertaining than the Sopranos and I plan to not miss one episode.

      September 18, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Robert Burden

    Enjoyed the first show of the new season very much. Looking forward to everything that Gyp Rossetti is going to say and do. Al Capone seems pail in comparison. Was nervous that it would not be that great without Jimmy. Happy to see that it was just as good.

    September 17, 2012 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Dell

    All of the clothes they wear look so uncomfortable. It makes me feel bad just watching it.

    September 17, 2012 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Can't Take It.

    At home, Margaret – is prepping for an Egyptian-themed party for Nucky, and she seems to have no issues ordering the dish on demand help around as the de facto First Lady of Atlantic City.

    September 17, 2012 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
  25. l. line

    should be going off in about 15 minutes...

    September 17, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Dish

    i gotta meet my dish at 6pm lol

    September 17, 2012 at 4:46 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Michelle

    Honestly, I don't think many people watch this show. It really is not another Sopranos. Since HBO took Sopranos off of On Demand I'm thinking about canceling their channel. They rearely if ever have anything worth watching. In my opinion, Boardwalk Empire is boring, plus I can't stand the old clothes and old cars. Glad I didn't like back in those days.

    September 17, 2012 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |

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