Some Thoughts on Boardwalk Empire – “The Devil You Know”

  1. Chalky White’s character deserved a much better final scene

Never has the writers’ task of cluing up this series in a hurry seemed more evident than with this week’s killing of Chalky White. Chalky had presumably been hell bent on getting his revenge on Narcisse, but in the process met up with his old flame and learned that he had given birth to his daughter while he was in jail. Daughter tells him how Narcisse has kept her under his thumb and prevented her from having a career as a recording artist. When Narcisse enters the room, it seems like Chalky had the perfect opportunity to gain his revenge and Daughter’s freedom with single bullet, but instead he gets neither. He hands over his gun for an obviously false promise to release her. Chalky is then quickly killed and Daughter is left facing the same bleak future.

  1. The fake drop made absolutely no sense

Why would Eli and Van Alden take the risk of making a drop with a bag full of newspapers when they make drops with real money all the time? They presumably make collections daily, so there is absolutely no reason for them to stuff the bag full of paper. The undercover cop, who is presumably a brilliant guy to have survived so long in his job, would have known that was a terrible risk, and he knew there was a chance that the guys would spill the beans if they were caught so he would obviously want them to take real money for the drop.

  1. Those Nucky drunk in a bar scene was a total waste of time.

We’ve already seen more than enough of Nucky getting drunk and wallowing in his troubles over the course of the series, so with only two episodes left to clue up this story the writers certainly don’t need to waste time showing him drinking, singing, and fighting with strangers in a bar. The writers appear to have clock management skills on par with Andy Reid. We have just past the two minute warning so it is time for the writers to stop calling runs up the middle.

  1. I am predicting that we are going to find out that Nucky is actually Jimmy’s real father.

I know that sounds absurd, but it seems like the only way that all of these flashbacks will have made any sense at all. Throughout the series, and particularly in this final season, Nucky not having any children has been a consistent underlying theme. From the death of his infant son, to the way he took in Margaret’s children as his own, to the contrast with his brother whose wife has been having children throughout the entire series. Finding out in the end that he had killed his own son would overlay perfectly with this theme and would help tie together all of the seasons. One semi-plausible scenario is that after Nucky’s son and wife die, he goes on a prolonged drunken binge and may not recall sleeping with Gillian. The timeline would actually line up nicely as a teenage Gillian has been introduced in the flashbacks at the same time that his wife is pregnant.