Boardwalk Empire

Episode Report Card
Joe R: B- | 3 USERS: C
Take Me to the River

Nucky and Margaret are dressing up for what promises to be a madcap evening of zany hilarity with the Daughters of the American Revolution. He's trying to tell her that she doesn't need to go -- I can't imagine he brought Lucy around to meet those women -- but Margaret is still mad at him and intent on being as passive-aggressive as she can be. Nucky then decides to tackle the Anabelle moment head-on, explaining that they used to have a thing years back -- he was helping her out. "Like you helped me out?" Margaret scoffs. Nucky says anyways, he thought Anabelle was Margaret's friend. "So you wouldn't fuck her?" Margaret asks, and Nucky gets really offended at her language, which is rich. She asks if he's rather she be demure and stay silent about what she's seen and been told. He asks what that would be, and she says, "That you're capable of anything." Van Alden told her that. And so we get to the meat of the argument: Margaret hates having to stand silent, and often be an accomplice, to what are obviously Nucky's illegal activities. Nucky, meanwhile, says she never objected to any of this before, beyond the cursory tut-tutting to make sure he knows she's a good person. "A good person wouldn't be here right now," he tells her. "You don't know what I am," she says, meekly.

At this, Nucky stomps off to the bathroom and returns with her "hidden" bottle of contraceptive Lysol. He tells her using makes her "like any whore." She, fairly sensibly, says she doesn't want any more babies. "That's not your right to decide!" Nucky snaps, assuring this scene a place in Women's Studies classes all over the country next semester. Margaret asks if he expected her to give him an heir, without even being married? "I thought you needed saving," he says, exposing more of his weird little psyche than maybe he intends. This, of course, brings up the whole thing with Hans, and before you know it, all the cards are out on the table. Nucky had Hans killed and she knows it and he knows she knows it. Of course, Nucky has a point when he says that no one is mourning Hans Schroeder, not him and certainly not Margaret. She slaps him for that bit of truth, and in turn, he smashes her Lysol against the mirror. "You won't be needing that anymore, will you?" he yells, and storms out. There's more than a hint of petulance whenever Nucky gets angry, and I wonder if that's the kind of thing people are talking about when they say they don't buy Buscemi in the role. I think it brings a fascinating dimension to the character, but I can see people looking for Nucky to be a Tony Soprano or an Al Swearengen to find that kind of thing disappointing.

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Boardwalk Empire




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