“Let’s get something straight. Nucky Thompson doesn’t run this city. I do.”
In the past three seasons of Boardwalk Empire, Nucky Thompson has made the delicate shift from high profile Atlantic City treasurer to blood thirsty gangster.
He’s always been a Machiavellian public figure. Nucky chooses to be both loved and feared, with fear winning out. Now, things are going in an ostensibly new direction. Nucky is giving up the limelight. Is he putting family first? That remains to be seen. Although he didn’t quite make amends with Margaret, he did ask her to return home as his wife (albeit a little creepily). Going forward, we’ll see an entirely new Thompson come Boardwalk Empire Season 4.
In the Season 3 finale, Nucky duped Arnold Rothstein into bailing him out of his little Gyp problem. It seemed as though Nucky was backed into a corner. Even with Al Capone and Chalky White at his side, he wasn’t making any headway into resolving his grievances with Gyp Rosetti.
Then, Mickey Doyle brought Nucky’s massive Pennsylvania distillery to Rothstein. In exchange for ninety-nine percent ownership of the distillery, Rothstein agreed to negotiate a cease fire with Joe Masseria, the man backing Gyp’s Atlantic City coup.
The small sale allowed Nucky to win on two fronts. First, he was able to take down Gyp and Masseria’s men. Second, he told the feds about the distillery, pointing a bootlegging investigation back at Rothstein. Backed into a corner, Nucky was still able to give Rothstein a firm slap on the wrist for abandoning him in his time of need.
For the time being, Nucky’s enemies have been quelled. Nucky no longer wants to be the man people fears. Instead, like Batman, he wants people to fear the essence of Nucky – not the person.
“I don’t want anyone knowing who I am. I don’t want anyone looking into in my business. I don’t want anyone coming near us we don’t already trust.” – Nucky
This final quote juxtaposes the opening scene, where the press laughed at the Mayor of Atlantic City for claiming that he had more power than Nucky.
It’s the beginning of true organized crime on Boardwalk Empire. Nucky is getting ready to setup a corporate hierarchy that only a RICO case can take down – too bad RICO didn’t come about until the 1960s. He’ll be the kingpin, pulling the strings from behind the scenes.
The closing scene was extremely powerful. A man recognized Nucky and called him by name. Nucky didn’t respond. Instead, he took off his red rose and threw it on the floor. In Boardwalk Empire Season 4, don’t expect Nucky to be dining out and engaging in random acts of frivolity.
“Margate Sands” was a phenomenal end to the season. Sept 2013 can’t come soon enough.
- Richard Harrow going through the brothel as a one man army.
Missing in Action:
- Nelson Van Alden?? What happened to him after his meeting with Capone?