Hostetler and the N*gger General ride back in town on their child-trampling steed. Steve the Drunk, predictably, pops a vein or five about losing control of the livery, and pretty soon Bullock is stuck brokering a compromise between two incredibly stubborn men. Steve gets the livery from Hostetler in exchange for a handsome sum (for which Bullock must clenchily arrange a loan). Unfortunately, neither man will sign the agreement before the other, leaving Bullock to wait until morning when cooler heads may or may not prevail. And while he gets slapped around a couple times, Steve is depressingly alive at episode's end. Boo!
Al's got a lot on his plate this week, emotionally speaking. He's feeling disregarded by Hearst when he and Cy are summoned to Hearst's quarters and treated like glorified lackeys. Then he chooses Adams to be his spokesperson with Hearst and has to deal with Dan's hurt feelings. And then he has to work though his finger-related PTSD, delving into his childhood abandonment issues in the process. Yes, this is the week Al gets in touch with the cocksucker within, particularly when he can't maintain a hard-on for the cocksucker without.
Also: Doc's still hacking up a lung or two, Con Stapleton foists his sweaty awfulness upon Rita Sue, and it's strongly implied that Leon's selling dope to Mrs. Ellsworth.
Weirdly, we open in what looks like darkest night, but is actually early morning, with Doc making his calls to the Bella Union. I had gotten used to starting episodes with Al, so this feels unusual. He goes to see Cy, who complains about the hour, though he says he understands and is grateful. "At least half that statement's a fuckin' lie," Doc says. The merest flicker of concern or, more likely, fear, passes across Cy's face as Doc coughs his way through the exam. Doc looks at Cy's stab wound, still healing, orders him to get up and around, and goes out, still hacking.
Later in the morning, Jane is startled by Blazanov who comes upon her to deliver a telegraph. She must be hungover, because she's, uh, a little cagey. "Telegraph for Miss Jane Cannary," the good Russian says. "Oh, yeah?" Jane growls back. "Well, here's a pistol for whatever your fuckin' name is." Blazanov cringes. "Now, please," he says. "Do not kill me. I am only messenger." Haahha! Good one, Tedd Mann, writer of this episode. Jane tells him to shut up and read the message.
Meanwhile, big bidness is about to go down in Deadwood's new bank. Alma nervously sits behind her little desk -- complete with nameplate -- and glances over to Trixie and Sol. They look on encouragingly as she goes out to greet the crowd and unveil the new sign for the Deadwood Bank. Al watches from his balcony before slowly turning to see Hearst on his own makeshift balcony, looking over at him. Hearst has the balls to give him a big wave hello. Johnny and Dan see all from below. "How'd Al answer?" Johnny asks. Dan tells him Al didn't answer the wave at all. Hearst sees them standing there and decides to try his wave on them. "Mornin'," he calls out, and while Johnny replies with a friendly wave, Dan is...a little less enthused. "Mornin'," he calls. "Best time of day to go fuck yourself." I file this one away to use on tomorrow's commute to work.
Blazanov tells Jane that her telegram is from one Samuel Fields, her old pal the NG. She snatches it away and commands that he keep the contents quiet.
Joanie is making her way through the thoroughfare when she is joined by Langrishe, who respectfully tells her of the real purpose for his previous visit: he wants to purchase the Chez Amie. Joanie is surprised and defensive. She asks what he wants to use it for, and when he tells her he'd like to make it a theater, she looks upset. "It's a schoolhouse, now," she says. He jokes that it's a very well-appointed building for a schoolhouse. She says she doesn't think she'd want to sell, and he graciously suggests that perhaps she'd consider renting. "Perhaps you'd consider fucking yourself," is her answer, and Langrishe is left wondering just what it takes in this town to get a polite response out of anybody.