Boardwalk Empire
The Age of Reason

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Joe R: B | 1 USERS: A+
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The Age of Reason

At the Ritz, Nucky signs the inside cover of a bible he intends to give to Teddy. He signs it "Your devoted Uncle Nucky," which is adorable, though it also points out the lack of an official stamp on Nucky and Margaret's relationship. Nucky's shoe-shiner asks about the story of Daniel in the lion's den, a favorite of his children. Nucky kindly tips the guy, and then picks up a phone call from one George Remus. Remus, continuing to speak about himself in the third person, thanks Nucky for pointing Harry Daugherty's man -- Jess Smith -- his way. Nucky is much obliged, though he ends up asking for a finder's fee, which raises Remus's ire and reminds him of his earlier grudge with Nucky over phone charges at the Ritz. "You come to Cincinnati, you're not handed a bill for the maid service," he grumbles loudly. Nucky fires right back: "Why the fuck would anyone go to Cincinnati?!" Nucky can't believe he's still holding on to this grudge. "Remus finds you petty and resentful," says Remus. Nucky, again, is a pretty quick wit: "Well Remus can go fuck himself." Nucky seems to be losing his ability to suffer fools -- particularly fools whose help he might need at some point. After the phone call, he puts a ten-dollar bill in the bible for Teddy... then he scratches that and puts in a $20. Let no one say that he's a nickel-and-dimer.

In the Commodore's big game room, Jimmy and Gillian are meeting with Uncle Junior Muttonchops, who finally gets a name this week: Leander Whitlock. Leander reads a quote from Alexander the Great: "I am indebted to my father for living and to my teacher for living well." Gillian, who's put her public face back on, beams at the Commodore and proclaims Jimmy the son of an adoring king. But Jimmy's hung up on the "teacher" part -- does Leander mean Nucky? "He's always thinking head," Leander says of Nucky, and he admires his ploy with the Attorney General. The Commodore starts wordlessly squawking, but Leander's like, "I'm sorry, Louis, but give the man his due." As Langston the butler wheels a sputtering Commodore away, I can't help but feel a twinge of guilt. I know the guy's a terrible man, but it's unsettling how much I'm laughing at the indecipherable sputterings of a stroke victim like he's stuck in a lost Abbott and Costello bit. Anyway, Leander expresses some doubts about Jimmy's tactics as of late -- in particular the Parkhurst scalping. Jimmy is all "You'd have to talk to the men responsible," and Leander ultimately agrees to let this thin denial stand. He asks to speak to Jimmy alone, so Gillian leaves, but not before another smooch on Jimmy's lips and the understanding that he'll tell her everything. Leander looks at him after she's gone, and Jimmy's like, "...Yeah, she does that." Leander tries to impart some wisdom to this young boy. He doesn't seem as much of a snarling gargoyle as the rest of the town elders; more like a patient teacher. "Not every insult requires a response," he says. He starts talking about how the young Commodore had many virtues, but prudence was not one of them. Nucky, however, always had his eye on the big picture: "A machine that would make everyone pay." He calls it impressive. Jimmy pouts and bristles at this praise of Nucky, in a way that really betrays his immaturity. "What's so hard about putting the squeeze on somebody?" he asks. Leander's like, "Are you finding it easy? Then don't judge." Jimmy claims that he started something here and intends to see it through to the end. Leander would rather hear that Jimmy wants to win. Jimmy, fear in his eyes, tries to make himself sound tough: "Isn't that what I just said?"

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