Monday, October 31, 2011

Boardwalk Empire “The Age of Reason”

The main characters are confronted by religion, and the part it plays in their respective lives. Make no mistake, none of these people are beyond reproach, they are all corrupt. The characters struggle to make peace with themselves and their actions, and they all end up falling short of that goal.

Margaret prepares her son, Teddy, for his first confession, and is surprised during her meeting with the priest to find out that she, too, must make a confession. Of course, this concerns Nucky, as he does not want her revealing sensitive information (i.e. his criminal pastimes) to a priest. He needn’t worry, though. Margaret skirts the issue and confesses instead to having a crush on Nucky’s new driver, Owen.

After last week’s barn explosion, Agent Clarkson is hospitalized with third degree burns, and is sure to die soon. Deeply religious Nelson, who doesn’t realize that Agents Ziwicki and Clarkson were only at the barn to track him, prays to God to heal Clarkson. Mid-prayer, Nelson is interrupted by Clarkson, who says, “I know what you did”. Now, most people would chalk a comment like this up to the ramblings of a dying and deeply sedated man. But, most people do not have a pregnant actress stashed away in an apartment waiting to give birth. Nelson is sure that this is a message directly from God. Guilt-ridden, Nelson calls his wife, admitting that he’s a sinner and not worthy of her or his job as a Prohibition agent.

Jimmy, the only character who seems to be comfortable with his inner demons, has a busy schedule this episode. After making a deal with the Yiddish butcher, Horvitz, last week to traffic alcohol, Jimmy sets his plans in motion. What he does not realize, is that Nucky is also transporting alcohol, with the help of Jewish gangster Arnold Rothstein. When Jimmy spots one of Horvitz’s henchmen with Nucky on the boardwalk, he’s sure that Horvitz has betrayed him. They both find out, however, that Horvitz is the one who was betrayed. The whole affair plays out in Horvitz’s meat locker, where Jimmy gets the information he needs before making short work of the unfortunate turncoat. Jimmy, Horvitz, and the gang ambush Rothstein’s men and Nucky’s liquor mid-transport in the woods. Rothstein’s associates, Charles "Lucky" Luciano and Meyer Lansky, talk Jimmy into letting them deliver the first shipment, with the agreement that they will work together in the future to betray Nucky.

Throughout the episode, Lucy is giving birth in her secret apartment to Nelson’s child. While he is tied up elsewhere receiving supposed messages from God, Lucy endures labor alone, and eventually gives birth to his daughter. By this time, Nelson has realized that Agent Clarkson is indeed rambling on his deathbed and comes home to find Lucy with his new child. Unfortunately, his wife Rose concerned by his confession call, has come looking for him. She also discovers Lucy and the baby as a result. How’s that for divine intervention?

No comments:

Post a Comment