Boardwalk Empire

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Many Happy Returns

Montage Time! In true Godfather style, we see Nucky giving his speech, which is kind hilarious in its grandiosity ("Gentlemen of the Fourth Estate..."), while Jimmy and Capone (with a big assist from Richard Harrow) get to the business of dispatching D'Alessios. Nucky's speech acknowledges the violence that has been on the rise since Prohibition kicked in, but he lays the blame for that violence straight at the feet of outsiders -- brothers from Philadelphia who meant to do Atlantic City harm. Oh, and they were in league with Hans Schroeder, who at this point is about as convenient a scapegoat as you can get. Nucky does manage to give Eli full credit for uncovering this criminal scourge and bringing them to justice. Speaking of which, the assassinations are pretty thorough. Jimmy uses his fancy war knife to slice Doogie Howser's pal's throat open while he's in a barber's chair, for instance. Harrow even kills the kid. The righteous killings certainly make for potent newspaper headline's on Election Day.

Nucky's glad-handing voters -- and making a point to congratulate the women -- on the Boardwalk voting lines. As we see person after person pass through Nucky's line of sight, nearly everyone getting a by-name greeting from Nucky, we get a sense of just how hard Nucky has to work at this consummate-politician thing. I'd like to see Eli charm this many people at once. Nucky spots Margaret on the line, wearing a lovely purple velvet hat (purple certainly seems to be the color of her liberation), and though he doesn't stop to speak to her, they share a look. Then Nucky proceeds to tell the rest of the line to make sure to vote Republican.

Jimmy returns home -- fresh from a trip full of out-of-state murdering -- and finds that Angela has cut her hair into a flapper 'do, to match the style of the time. Is this foreshadowing for Angela getting into some Roxie Hart style shenanigans next season?

Up at the AC Republican Club and Back-Slapping Association, the local pols and ward bosses receive the increasingly sunny-looking returns and thus are given towards drink and merriment. Jimmy, sitting off in the corner, is merely given towards the drink. And the scowling. Eddie brings Nucky the news that Arnold Rothstein wouldn't be indicted. When he leaves Nucky's office, it's just Nucky and Eli, who has still not gotten over ... anything. I'd wager Eli Thompson has not gotten over one thing in his entire life. Despite the fact that Nucky is giving him a cut of Rothstein's million-dollar payout. Despite Nucky's assurances that all will be made right, with regard to Eli's "resignation" from his sheriff's post. Despite all that, Eli still insists on being bitter, towards Nucky and his "magic scepter" and way with words. Of course, Nucky doesn't help his cause much. When Eli tells him, "Your words actually affect people," Nucky responds, "What's that? Dale Carnegie?" Still, it's hard not to side with Nucky against Eli's petty grousing. "Blood is thicker than water," Nucky assures his brother. Eli, of course, asks, "Why did it have to be my blood?"

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Boardwalk Empire

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