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Say Hello to My Little Winky! – A Recap of Boardwalk Empire’s Season 2 Premiere “21”

(NOTE:  For those of you who might be poking around for a certain Gossip Girl recap, I PROMISE it’s coming.  I’m just a day behind in my recapping schedule.  😦  Check back here around this time tomorrow, 9/28, and you’ll most definitely find it . . . Thanks for being patient!  )

“The new season of Boardwalk Empire starts this week.  Gotta look HOT!  You just know all the ladies love Buscemi!” 

Greetings fellow Boardwalkers!  Welcome back!  Man, it’s been a long time since I’ve talked to you!  I can’t believe it’s been an ENTIRE year since I last used THIS animated GIF . . .

For the record, I plan to use it AT LEAST two more times in this recap  . . . 

 Did you watch the Season Premiere?  If you didn’t, you missed a good show!  Let’s see .  . . people got blown to pieces, and had their necks slashed . . . there was some very awkward sex in a hotel room . . . we got to hear an interesting discussion about Jimmy Darmody’s winky .  . . that tubby old guy with the glasses did hilarious-looking exercises in his living room.  (By the way, if anybody has a picture of this, please send it my way, and I will be forever indebted to you!)

All in all, it was a fitting end to an interminable hiatus.  And I’m very eager to discuss it with you.

Maybe a little too eager . . . 

So, pop that cork, and load that gun, because we are about to have some fun . . .

The rhyming .  . . it was too much, right? 

“When you get what you want, you don’t want what you get.”

“I’m not wearing any underwear!  WOOHOO!”

Boardwalk Empire is nothing if not cinematic.  And why wouldn’t it be?  It’s produced by FRIGGIN MARTIN SCORCESE!  They don’t get much more cinematic than that . . .

“Are you talkin’ to me?”

The opening sequence of the episode, along with the song that accompanies it, pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the hour.  Four months have passed since we last spent time with our Boardwalk Empire crew.  And though many of them seem to have achieved what they “wanted” last season, few of them appear to be genuinely happy with the results.

New address . . . nicer clothes . . . better hair . . . same perma-b*tchface.

The year is 1921.  Prohibition is technically still in effect.  Except, it’s about as well-enforced as the “No Underage Drinking,” regulations at a present-day frat party, or the “No Pot” laws at a Dave Matthews Band concert.  A new shipment of booze has just come to shore.  And a bored-looking, recently-married, Jimmy Darmody, along with his trusty facially-challenged sidekick Richard Harrow, direct the cargo off the boats and into cars, where it will be shipped to Chalky White’s distillery.

YAY, Capitalism! 

There, it will be watered-down significantly, and rebottled, so that restaurants and bars around town can pay twice what it’s actually worth to serve it.  And Average Joe American can pay double THAT price to drink it.

Meanwhile, the no-longer arsenic-poisoned Commodore is doing what appears to be Tae Bo in his stuffed animal-infested living room.  Also in this sequence, we get to see a very sad Margaret Schroeder (Isn’t she ALWAYS very sad?) waking up alone in Nucky’s big empty bed, while he canoodles with a new trampy-looking lady, at yet another high class Atlantic City Orgy “business meeting.” (Well, that certainly didn’t take long!)

“What can I say?  I’m irresistible!”

Lest you think this entire episode is going to be all broody and contemplative about the “meaning of life” and “true happiness” and such, we are about to get to the GOOD STUFF . . .

Those Pesky Sheet-heads are at it again!

SHEEETTTT!

OK . . . this next part . . . I’m not going to lie . . . It’s kind of awesome.  And this is coming from someone who doesn’t condone violence at allWho am I kidding?  Fake violence RULES! So, Chalky is at his warehouse, overseeing the delivery of his alcohol shipment . . .

First of all, loving the outfit.  That hat? The red jacket with the fur collar?  The solid gold tie?  This guy is a TOTAL PIMP!

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 . . . when suddenly there’s a knock at the door.  It’s THIS GUY . . .

“Knock, Knock.”

“Who’s there?”

“Dead.”

“Dead who?”

“Dead YOU (and me).” 

Yep . . . so much for a security guard.  Those sheet heads from the KKK have come to crash this Jamaican Rum Party.  (Perhaps, the Rum Runners should have had a little CAPTAIN in them?)

“It’s just a Halloween costume.  I don’t know why you guys are getting so upset.”

 The Sheet Heads are shooting down the doors.  People are DYING!  One of the guys even has the NERVE to hold a gun to my darling Chalky’s beautiful head . . .

Fortunately, like all bigots, Sheet Head is a TOTAL MORON.  And instead of, you know, actually DOING WHAT HE CAME TO DO, he starts making the classic cartoon villain mistake of MONOLOGUING about the murder he’s about to commit.  This gives the Bad Ass Chica in the background the opportunity to fire a round right into Chalky’s would-be murderer’s shoulder, and TAKE THAT RACIST ASSHAT OUT!

Talk about standing by your man (or . . . someone else’s man . .  . whatever)!  I haven’t seen this much self-sacrificing bravery since Rupert Murdoch’s wife dove into that PIE, during the congressional hearing . . .

Unfortunately, she got blown up about two seconds later . .  .

R.I.P. Little Miss Awesomesauce . . . I’ll still remember you as the best thing about this episode. 🙂 

And then those damn Sheetheads got away!  But not before a thankfully ALIVE Chalky got one more parting shot at them . . .

 

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I may or may not have cheered, and raised a fist in triumph, when this happened.  Does that make me a bad person?

“Let’s SCHOOL these crackers!”

Learn, dammit! 

Nucky arrives home from a long HARD night of getting wasted and banging whores  planning Atlantic City’s future, when he gets news about the shooting.  Since the KKK are a fairly influential group in Atlantic City at this time, and Chalky is an important ally of Nucky’s both in the illegal liquor business, and in his ability to secure for the politician the much-prized African American vote, Nucky finds himself between a rock and a hard racist place.  And so he decides to visit Chalky at his home, along with his turncoat soon-to-be dead, just like Fredo brother, Eli.

All in all, it’s a rather uncomfortable meeting, that begins with an uncomfortably long piano solo by Chalky’s suprisingly preppy son, and continues with an uncomfortably awkward meal.  Nucky is frustrated with Chalky for shooting at white people, without consulting him first, because that makes HIM look bad.

Seriously, Chalky, had you texted me, when all this was happening, I would have totally told you to hold your fire.  Wait . . . sorry . .  wrong decade. 

(Ummm . . . yeah . . . it’s called self-defense, Nucky . . . learn it . . . live it . . . love it.)

 Chalky wonders why this happened in the first place, especially considering that a big part of the reason he allied with Nucky in the first place,  was to get protection from gun-toting wackadoodles like this.  Chalky’s plan is to crash a Klan meeting, guns blazing, and “SCHOOL THE CRACKERS.” And this is just such a cool phrase, I’d totally have it printed on a t-shirt, if I didn’t think that would probably get me beaten up in the city . . .

I was just kidding about the t-shirt, Chalky.  I swear! 

Nucky promises to do a less sucky job protecting Chalky in the future.  However, he cautions him to hold off on the “Cracker Schooling,” lest he accidentally get himself killed.  Nucky also agrees to refrain from arresting Chalky until further notice.  All in all, it seems like a pretty level-headed compromise on BOTH sides . . .

But things become even more complicated when, during one of Nucky’s community forums, one of the KKK members barges in to announce that a member of clan has died, due to wounds he sustained during the shoot out.  Coincidentally, this is the same guy that ALMOST killed Chalky, but was taken out by Little Miss Awesomesauce (R.I.P.).

“I should be in a brothelhome having sex with a random slut my wife, right now.”

Nucky, who had begun his speech, diplomatically condemning BOTH the African American Rum Runners and the KKK for their actions, finds himself forced to secretly arrest Chalky .  . . “for his own good.”  Something tells me Chalky isn’t going to like that very much . . .

Why PETA HATES the Commodore . . .

So, you like to shoot animals, and stuff them, huh, Old Man?  Well, STUFF THIS!

Back at La Casa de Commodore, Jimmy’s heretofore absentee dad is hard at work Lady Macbeth-ing his ambivalent son to usurp Nucky’s control over Atlantic City.  (It’s pretty strongly implied that Commodore and Co., were behind the KKK raid of Chalky’s warehouse, and his attempted assassination.)  Some of Commy’s advice makes sense.  For example, he tells Jimmy to start forging his own business connections in the liquor trade (a good idea), and to start developing a more positive public presence in the community, by shaking hands, kissing babies, and such (another good idea).  Then he starts point out all these creepy dead animals hanging around his house, and talking about how he killed them . . .

I don’t get it . . . and I don’t LIKE IT! 

He starts telling one story in particular about shooting a bear in the stomach, while looking him straight in the eye, when he was 10.  And I think it was supposed to be “metaphoric” about how you should, confront your enemies, and show no fear, and other such bullsh*t.  But, honestly, I was so disturbed by that poor teddy bears horrified visage, that I wasn’t really paying attention . . .

In my defense, I don’t think Jimmy was either . . . 

Oh, the Commodore did have one thought-provoking line in his otherwise interminable animal-slaughtering monologue.  And this was it: “You will be judged by what you succeed at, not by what you attempt.”

Depressing . . . but true.

In other Bad Parenting News . . .

Things you shouldn’t do to your kids #1 – KISS THEIR WINKYS!

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So, Jimmy finally decided to make an honest woman out of his lesbian wife, and move her and his kid into a nice big house, thanks to the raise he got from Nucky.  Also crashing in this rather sizeable pad, is Jimmy’s pretty, but promiscuous, Mommy, and his loyal sidekick, Richard (more on him later).

“Did you just say, ‘Grandma’s hot?” 

The odd little dynamic of this extended family, becomes immediately apparent in this breakfast scene.  Mrs. Darmody is clearly the third wheel in her own marriage.  First Mama Darmody insists on making Jimmy’s eggs, since SHE is the only one who knows how he likes them.  Then, when Jimmy suggests taking his son bird hunting, just as Nucky took him, back when he was young (important later), and Angela protests, Mama Darmody jumps right in, and sides with her son.

Mommy dearest? 

I have to say, as much as I found the character of Angela Darmody to be a HUGE bore, back in Season 1, I was pretty proud of her, this week.  In most shows where the Mother-in-Law babies her son, and passive-aggressively lashes out at her daughter-in-law, it can takes WEEKS before the wife has the (for lack of a better term) balls to actually say something about it.  Angela confronts Mama Darmody immediately (as soon as Jimmy leaves, of course) about undercutting her authority.  To this, Mama Darmody casually replies that when Jimmy was a baby, she used to kiss his winky.

Now, for a while, a lot of fans have speculated as to the nature of Jimmy’s relationship with his mother . . .  specifically, how Oedipal it might be.  Some have even gone as far as to suggest that their relationship is a sexual one.  Maybe I’m just being naive here.  But, while I think that Gillian and Jimmy DEFINITELY have an inappropriate relationship — one borne out of her having given birth to him at the tender age of 13, and her constant need to be found desirable by ALL men, even her son — I don’t think it quite rises to that level of gross misconduct.

You know how dogs mark their territory, to silently inform other dogs that they should back off?

Yeah.  I think it’s safe to say that Gillian was metaphorically peeing on Jimmy here, to send Angela a message , which coincidentally, is probably exactly what Baby Jimmy would do to Gillian, if she ever got NEAR his winky to do anything other than change a diaper.

Things you shouldn’t do to your kids #2 – Give them wads of cash for trying to SET THEIR SCHOOL ON FIRE

“You just keep lighting those matches, Kiddies.  Mama needs a new pair of shoes!” 

So, remember back in Season 1, when Nucky used to get all weepy, while looking at thost baby incubators . .  . and he boo hoo hooed, about wanting to start a family, and got all upset when Margaret tried to Lysol herself in to contraception?  Yeah, those days are clearly over.  Nucky’s cool about being a dad, when it comes to reminiscing about the “good old days,” of going duck hunting with Little Jimmy.  But when it comes to Margaret’s kids, he pretty much can’t be bothered . . .

This leaves Margaret to cope with the unsightly bruises popping up all over her son, Teddy’s hands, and the fact that he’d rather hide under the kitchen table all day than go to school.  As it turns out, Teddy’s been whacked by his nun . . .

Bad NUN!

Teddy insists that he did nothing to deserve such treatment.  So, Margaret, who seems to be a fairly adept, if slightly cold and Betty Draper-esque mother herself, heads to the school to confront the Slugger Nun.  As it turns out, Slugger Nun hit Teddy because he was playing with matches in the school closet, seems obsessed with fire (FORESHADOWING!), and would have likely been expelled, were it not for Nucky’s high holy connections within the school.  Margie is a bit humiliated now, but relieved .  . . apparently, being a “play toy” for a powerful man has its perks . . .

 

But as kept a woman as she has become, Margaret Schroeder is no dummy.  And so the next time she hears Nucky moaning and carrying on about how Jimmy won’t call him Daddy anymore, she cleverly suggests that he start fathering HER son.  He can start by telling him to STOP TRYING TO BURN THINGS.

Only YOU can prevent Boardwalk Empire Fires . . .

I was saddened, and a bit disturbed, by the fact that, the minute Nucky entered Teddy’s room, he immediately started stripping down to his boxers.  For one thing, it reminded me that Margaret’s first husband was abusive to her, and likely was abusive to her kids as well.  It also reminded me of Gillian’s winky comment .  . . which gave me the shivers . . . if you catch where I’m going with this . . .

But Nucky didn’t want to hit Teddy . . . which was good.  Unfortunately, he didn’t want to PARENT him either . .  . which was bad.  After boredly and awkwardly telling the kids that he should . . . you know . . . not burn stuff anymore, Nucky actually digs into his wallet, and hands Teddy a sizeable bill.  (I think it may have even been a TWENTY  . . . which was SOOO much money back then.)  “Run along to the candy shop,” says Nucky to a surprised looking Mini Schroeder.

Hey Nucky, if by chance you are still alive when this comes out, I have a great movie recommendation for you . . .

(Hey, I just remembered something, didn’t Little Teddy watch Nucky burn down his father’s house, last season?  Uh oh . . .)

Meanwhile, at the complete opposite end of the “warmth” spectrum . . .

Why Richard Harrow needs a HUG . . .

Poor Richard Harrow!  Talk about a serial killer with a heart of gold!  My heart started to go out to the guy, the minute I saw him, sadly pushing his food around his plate, so as not to burden the Darmody family with his inability to hide his disfigurement while eating.  To Jimmy’s credit, he immediately senses his friend’s discomfort, and tells him not to worry about his appearance.  And when that doesn’t work, he kindly offers Richard the option of taking some biscuits back to his bedroom.  An offer Richard accepts gratefully .  . .

Richard’s inquiry to Jimmy about what it feels like to have everything, is an equally sad moment for both characters.  After all, what Jimmy has that Harrow wants is so minimal . . . a family who loves him, a home of his own, and a full-face.  And though Jimmy has all of these things, we know that he isn’t happy.  He wants more for himself, but isn’t quite sure what that entails.  His mother and father are pushing him to usurp Nucky’s position of power.  However, he seems ambivalent about such a future, and slightly troubled by the personal betrayals he will inevitably have to exact, in order to obtain it . . .

“I’m just a boy . . . with a knife . . . and a lot of guns . . . waiting for somebody to love me.”

Later we find Richard upstairs reading . . . Oh, wait  . . . he’s not reading, he’s cutting pictures of families and happy couples out of magazines and pasting them in a book.  OMG!  It’s a DREAM BOOK!  Richard Harrow READS THE SECRET!

Did I just undermine this sweet, and incredibly poignant moment, with a lame joke about a self-help book?   Yeah, I think I did.  Moving on . . . 

Why people who repeatedly refer to themselves in the third person don’t deserve to LIVE . . .

“Yeah, there are these words called ‘I’ and ‘me.’ Learn to use them, or ‘I’ will shoot off your face.” 

In case, I haven’t mentioned it before (and I know I haven’t), AL CAPONE’S BACK!

LOVE HIM! 

Having said that, the one scene we got to see him in, was actually pretty random.  It featured this annoying guy who insisted on talking about himself in the third-person, like the dude “Jimmy” from that one Seinfeld episode they always play on TBS.  Al Capone didn’t like him, and neither did I.  But apparently, this Third-Person Talker guy used to work for Torrio.  Now he has his own business in Cincinatti, which is apparently, a hot spot for liquor.  Torrio and Capone decide to STOP getting their liquor from Nucky, and START getting from this guy, which I guess is just another nail in Nucky’s already VERY HOLEY coffin.

Never . .  . gets . .  . old. 

More importantly, my man Capone is responsible for breaking the bad news to Nucky.  So, we will  DEFINITELY get to see more of him next week . . .

Can I get a HELL YEAH? 

Wasted Tablecloths and Misguided Wedding Gifts

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I’d say Jimmy’s line about the Sheet-Heads was my favorite of the evening.  How about you?

So, remember when I said that the Commodore told Jimmy he should start schmoozing more?   Well, apparently, that meant attending that Almost-Nucky-Murdering Bastard’s funeral.  Nucky, who is schmoozing king, was, of course, also in attendance.  That’s one of the things I love about all these mob shows and movies, they always view funerals as marketing opportunities . . .

JIMMY:  “Hey Nucky, doens’t Chalky have that exact same outfit in red?”

NUCKY: “Yeah, it also comes in purple, green and hot pink.  Would you like one, I have a coupon in my pocket?”

After Jimmy and Nucky pay there respective respects, they engage in an uncomfortable, but meaningful conversation about the fact that Jimmy has pretty much cut Nucky out of his life, apart from the most rudimentary of business transactions.  Nucky is clearly hurt by Jimmy’s recent chilliness, particularly his decision not to consult Nucky about, or even invite him to attend, his recent nuptials.  However, he’s also a bit paranoid (and rightfully so) that Jimmy might be plotting against him with the Commodore.  “He’s a very duplicitous man,” Nucky warns Jimmy, before heading back to the funeral.  “[Now] you’ve been told.”

Later that evening, Jimmy arrives home to find a “wedding present” from Nucky.  But instead of buying him plates, or His and Hers robes, Nucky buys him a rather ugly looking statue, featuring a father and son type hunting.   The significance of the statue is not lost on Jimmy, who clearly has fond memories of his childhood outings with his former surrogate dad, who he is now trying to majorly screw over.

And yet, Jimmy’s facial expression upon receiving the gift is fairly inscrutable.  Does he feel guilty about what he is about to do?   Or is he annoyed at Nucky for trying to manipulate him this way?  Either way, Jimmy literally and metaphorically casts aside his surrogate daddy, by hiding the statue away on the top shelf a closet .  . .

Speaking of things best kept hidden . . .

Hot Times in Atlantic City with Mr. and Mrs. Creepy Van Slappy

Name:  Mrs. Van Alden; Turn-ons: Jesus, churches, warm milk, long walks on the beach, alcohol raids .  . .

After an entire season of being tucked safely away in the suburbs, Mrs. Van Alden has FINALLY come to visit her Creepy, Crazy, Back-Slapping Murderous Husband.  First he takes her to his office at the Bureau, where he finds two of his men, homoerotically wrestling eachother on the floor . . . and act he pretends to be annoyed by, but actually finds quite titillating.

Hey, try not to be so hard on yourself, Psycho.  Your secret is safe with us.

(By the way, have you ever noticed that Nelson Van Alden looks perpetually constipated?)

Hoping to win back the points he just lost from his boss, one of the wrestlers, knowing how religious the Van Aldens claim to be, hands Mrs. V a pamphlet entitled “If Jesus came to Atlantic City.”

The problem of course, is that, while purporting to be a religious guide to the city,  the pamphlet is actually a listing of every WHOREHOUSE and NUDEY BAR in town!  Careful, Wrestler Cop, remember what happened to the LAST GUY who tried to “help” Van Alden with his “religous desires?”

R.I.P. Agent Sebso! 

While reading about whores, Mrs. Van Alden remarks that perhaps it is a good thing she can’t have children, since a world where people have sex for fun, is CLEARLY not a place to raise a godfearing kid . . .

At a swank restaurant, Mrs. Van Alden finds herself once again APPALLED when a sweet and efete-sounding waiter fairly blatantly offers the couple ALCOHOL!

Creepy Van Alden initially doesn’t seem to surprised or upset by this inquiry.  He simply orders himself some warm milk, and is ready to call it a day.  But one look at his wife’s judgy eyes tells him that he must do something about this MORTAL SIN the waiter is committing.  And so he calls his cronies at the Bureau, and stages a loud and over-dramatic raid on the restaurant . . . one that includes punching the poor waiter in the face, as well as raiding the restaurants massive liquor stash, and filled coffers . . .

Now, THAT looks like my kind of party!

Van Alden then takes a totally-aroused Mrs. Van A back to a seedy hotel  (He can’t take her back to his boarding house .  . . we’ll learn why in a bit.), and proceeds to have the unsexiest sex EVER with her.

The next day, Van Alden drops his wife off at the bus station and returns home, with the cash he stole from the restaurant during the raid.   He is not alone.  SOMEONE IS SLEEPING IN HIS BED . . .

Apparently, Van Alden has been boarding that evil slut Lucy (who is now VERY pregnant with his creepy spawn), and paying for her living expenses / doctors bills with money acquired from illegal raids.  Jesus would most certainly NOT approve, Nelson!

“Doh!”

Uh oh . . . I hope you can get a refund on that extra movie ticket, Margie!

The episode ends with a doleful Margaret watching Charlie Chaplin’s “The Kid,” with her children, and staring at an empty seat next to her.  It appears her loyal and loving .  . . whatever it is these two are to eachother now . . . Nucky has stood her up.  In Nucky’s defense, he actually has a pretty good excuse.  You see, he’s recently been ARRESTED FOR ELECTION FRAUD!

And that was the Season 2 Premiere of Boardwalk Empire, in a nutshell?  So, tell me, what did you think of the episode?  Was it Jackpot . . . or a disappointing Bust?  Sound of in the comment section below . . .

Until next week . . .

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Blood is Thicker Than Water – A Recap of Boardwalk Empire’s Season 1 Finale “A Return to Normalcy”

“Now, son, you be a good boy, and wash your hands, before dessert.  That Dead D’Alessio’s neck blood under your fingers is probably covered with germs!  Who knows where that guy’s been?”

R.I.P. Guy who used to be on Doogie Howser.  Better luck next lifetime . . .

 Well, Season 1 of Boardwalk Empire quite literally went out with a BANG didn’t it?  The Body Count was HIGH, a President and Mayor were elected, couples were reunited, someone got knocked up, and someone else got a REALLY crappy haircut . . .

Yes, Angela, you keep that hat ON!  Remember what happened to Felicity when she cut HER hair too short on HER show?

*facepalm*

So, without further adieu, I proudly present to you a recap of “A Return to Normalcy” . . .

Halloween Just Got a Whole Lot Scarier . . .

Awww, it’s got its mother’s eyes (and its father’s teeth)!

When the episode opens, Van Alden is giving a self-righteous and incredibly lame rousing speech to prospective new FBI recruits.

We learn that one of the men to whom Van Alden is preaching, could end up serving as his replacement.  You see, after the unfortunate death of his partner, Agent Sebso, due to Van Alden holding his head underwater until he drowned while 30-someodd supposedly religious people watched and did NOTHING heart attack, Van Alden has become disillusioned with SINFUL Atlantic City, and the work he is doing there as Prohibition Agent.  Therefore, he would like to leave the FBI and find work elsewhere . . .

“What?  You couldn’t have decided that last week BEFORE you killed me?”

While Van Alden is warning the new recruits against temptation, a smart-mouthed rookie cop, who looks kind of like a Poor Man’s Matt Damon, jokes that Van Alden should “bring on the dancing girls!”

BIG MISTAKE, NotMattDamon! 

Van Alden rewards the celebrity look-alike’s humor, by PUNCHING HIM IN THE FACE (therby, forever dashing the poor man’s hopes of ever getting cast in Good Will Hunting 2: Electric Boogaloo . . . )

Back at home, Mrs. Van Alden is clearly disappointed to learn that her husband wants to leave the bureau, and become a farmer . . .

“Now, I’m NEVER going to get to meet Al Capone.  He’s SO DREAMY! *sigh*”

You were doing the Lord’s work,” Wifey argues . . .

= Lord’s Work

Oh, that Mrs. Van Alden!  She’s such a kidder!

Speaking of folks that Holy Man Van Alden may or may not be schtupping, the Grand Poobah of Hypocrisy gets a very frightening visit at his office, toward the end of the episode . . .

*sings*  “I know all there is to know about The Crying Game . . .”

It was so nice of the show’s writers to give us a reprieve from having to see Lucy Dumb Slut on our television screens, last week.  I guess asking for two in a row, was just too much to ask . . .  The good news is that Lucy only stuck around long enough to tell Creepy Van Alden, that she was carrying his Creepy Van Spawn.  Apparently, having a barren wife, has caused Mr. Back Slappy’s sperm to become a bit restless . . .

Mrs. Van Alden’s Hostile Uterus resents that remark . . . and argues that it has dodged a MAJOR bullet here.

Karma’s a b*tch, Mr. Van A.  And, you just got yourself screwed!

“The D’Alessio Brothers Sleep With the Fishes”

Al Capone shoots people in the face, WHILE smoking cigarettes.  Could he BE any cooler?

For most of the season, Arnold Rothstein has plotted to bring down Nucky Thompson, and take over his Boardwalk Empire.  And yet, with the Feds breathing down his back, and an indictment for fixing the World Series looming over his head, the New York crime boss finds himself in the new-to-him situation of being up “sh*t’s creek without a paddle.”  So, Arnold, being the rational guy he is, decides make temporary peace with his enemy, even if it means eating a little crow, along the way . . .

Tastes like chicken!

So, in a scene mimicking a similar one that took place during the pilot episode, Rothstein and his New York crew (including Lucky Luciano and Meyer Lansky), meet with Torrio, Capone, of the Chicago crew, as well as Nucky and Jimmy (from their own crew), on a deserted beach in Atlantic City . . .

“Never underestimate the Power of the Bow Tie.”

A deal is struck.  Nucky will make sure that Rothstein is cleared of all criminal charges, in return for $1 million and the known whereabouts of all those pesky D’Alessio brothers.  (I’m guessing Rothstein is MIGHTY happy about those Life Insurance policies he took out on all of them now, isn’t he?)

Then, in a scene that was a clearly a homage to the last 5 minutes of ALL THREE Godfather movies, as well as just about every mob movie I’ve ever seen, we watch Nucky give some dull political speech about ridding Atlantic City of violence.  The speech, of course, is intercut with gory peeks at the violent deaths of all the remaining living D’Alessio brothers, at the hands of Capone, Lucky Luciano, Richard Harrow, and Jimmy.  They even killed that poor little runty kid!

 

Trick or Treat!

Now that’s just wrong!

While most of the D’Alessio’s met their untimely demise by gunshots to the head, the most gruesome death of all came to Max Casella a.k.a. Vinny Delpino from Doogie Howser (one of the few D’Alessios who actually had LINES on the show).  Jimmy whacked him in the barber shop, by slicing his throat open with a knife.

Sweeney Todd would be so proud!

Speaking of BAD haircuts . . .

Splitting Hairs . . .

“When I told you I wanted to find common ground with you, us having the exact same haircut, wasn’t exactly what I had in mind . . .”

After a nice leisurely afternoon of neck slicing, Jimmy arrives home to a wife he doesn’t want to talk to, and a kid who doesn’t want to talk to him.  When confronted about her son’s “disrespectful” behavior, Dull as Dirt Angela admits that everyone in the house is frightened of Jimmy, because he has PTSD attacks in the middle of the night, and starts grabbing Angela and screaming at her.

To his credit, Jimmy seems horrified by the prospect of hurting his wife or his son. 

He much prefers beating up and killing grown men, to women and children!  (It pays better!)  Hugging Dull as Dirt Angela, Jimmy tells her that, now that he is home from the war, he wants to really start fresh at being a “family man” to her and Little Tommy.  “Were you in love with her?’  Jimmy plaintively asks Angela, in reference to her “Kissing Friend” Mary, who “left for Paris” last week.

Although Angela initially assures Jimmy of her love for him, the expression on her face when she receives a postcard, supposedly from Mary, with a cheesy picture of the Eiffel Tower on it, and the even cheesier line (“Forgive me, but don’t forget me.”) written across its back, says differently.  Oh, and lets not forget that AWFULLY butch Little Dutch Boy haircut Angela was sporting at the end of the episode! 

Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a picture of it online.  However, I can tell you that it looked a little something like this . . .

“Don’t look directly at it, Son.  You might go blind.”

It was the Maid . . . in the Kitchen . . . with the Cookies . . .

Meanwhile, a much healthier looking Commodore is accusing his maid of poisoning him, his dog, Jimmy, and Cookie Monster, with her arsenic-flavored cookies . . .

“Still tastes DELICIOUS . . . nom . . . nom . . . nom.”

The Maid admits to poisoning her boss so quickly, and easily, that it really got me wondering whether she was taking the fall for somebody else. 

“Moi?”

Nucky’s reaction of refusing to arrest the Maid, and paying her to get out of town, seemed only to confirm my suspicions.

“And another one down, and another one down . . . another one bites the dust.”

“I certainly understand why you’d want to, but you can’t go around poisoning people you have to get others to do it for you,” Nucky lectures the Maid, before giving her a fond farewell.

Now, like Nucky, I’m not exactly mad at the Maid for trying to off Commodore Pedophile, either.  But she ABSOLUTELY deserves to go to jail for killing the POOR DOG!

“B*tch is going DOWN!”

“I tell you my sorrows . . . you pretend to be sympathetic .  . . we wind up in bed.”

“Well, geez, Nucky!  Now you’ve gone and spoiled all of Season 2!”

Having abandoned La Casa de Nucky, Margaret is now shacking up with that TOTAL MORON, Nan Britton, who is STILL convinced that Warren Harding is going to leave his wife for her, as soon as he becomes President.  While the pair are out frolicking through a cemetery, in honor of, Halloween, Margaret conveniently comes across the grave of Nucky’s son, who died, after having lived only six days.

Nucky’s SUPER harsh reaction to her daily “Lysol Baths” suddenly making a lot more sense to her, Margaret rushes to see Nucky, just as he is preparing to attend a Halloween party.  Nucky’s “costume” looks kind of like THIS . . .

 . . . only about 500 times LESS SEXY!

When Margaret arrives, Nucky goes to remove his mask, but she tells him to keep it on.  “It suits you,” she says flirtatiously.

And so does THIS . . .

When Margaret asks Nucky about his lost son, the Atlantic County Treasurer at first does not want to talk about it.  “I tell you my sorrows . . . you pretend to be sympathetic . . . we end up in bed,” whines Nucky, as if nookie with Margaret is the WORST thing that could possibly happen to him.

“Oh, please no!  Don’t have orgasmic, mindblowing, sex with me!  Anything but that!”

Eventually, Nucky tells Margaret about how he was always afraid to hold his frail newborn boy.  Therefore, he busied himself with work, during its first days home from the hospital.  After a few days, Nucky finally gets the courage to hold his son.  But when he goes to take the child from his wife, he sees that it has been dead for many days.  His wife just refused to believe this was so.  She suffered from serious depression, as a result.  One month after the baby was buried, she slit her wrists and died.

“The times with you and the children in the house . . . I have never been happier or more terrified in my life .  . . And now you know more about me than anybody here,” Nucky admits.

A tearful Margaret is touched by Nucky’s story.  Much of his behavior toward her makes sense now.  After all, she too lost a baby.  Margaret then tells Nucky that she is planning on leaving Atlantic City, for good.  Nucky offers to give her money, but she declines.  “There is a kindness in you,” Margaret insists.  “How can you do what you do?”

“We all have to decide how much sin, we can live with,” Nucky says sadly.

“Mr. Thompson, I am pleased to have finally made your acquaintance and I would really like to f*ck you now,” says Margaret, before bidding Nucky adieu.

“She’ll be back.  They always come back.  I mean, who can resist this Hot Hunk of Man Cheese?”

The Thrill of Victory, and The Sweetness of Revenge

Halloween is over and election day is here.  That means Nucky and his friends are going to have to ramp up the corruption and campaign rigging to a whole new level, if they want to get those Republicans in office!  Bribes exchange hands.  People vote multiple times in multiple districts.  The dead are registered to vote . . .

 . . . as are the undead.

Shortly before election day, Chalky White approaches Nucky, reminding him of his ability to control the African American vote, a contingent that is much coveted on both sides of the political divide.

“I RULE!”

So, Chalky’s going to need a few favors from Nucky, before he can offer his services.  He asks for cash, a car, and an invitation to the inaugural ball.  Nucky seems fine with the first two, but the last request concerns him a bit.  This is 1920, after all . . .

On Election Day, Nucky is shaking babies and kissing hands (or whatever the heck that old expression is supposed to say) . . .

 . . . when he locks eyes with Margaret, on the voting line.  They eye f*ck eachother for a bit, but say nothing.

Ultimately, Nucky’s stool pidgeon, Mayor Bader, wins his election.  (Ummmm, yay, I guess?)  Everyone seems to be happy with the results, except Eli, who, understandably, is still pissed about being passed over as Sheriff in favor of Opportunistic Prick . . .

Nucky doesn’t understand what Eli is getting so cranky about.  (Little Bro must be on the rag.)  “I gave you a cut of Rothstein’s money,” argues Nucky.

Eli is not impressed.  But I would be.  Do you have any idea how much $1 million was back in 1920.  That’s A LOT of salad!  “What you say affects people,” Eli lectures.  “There are consequences to what you say, and what you do.”

Nucky continues to try and plead his case, “I’m sorry I hurt your feelings, but you have to trust me.  Blood is thicker than water.”

“And tastier too!”

“But why does it have to be MY blood?”  Eli whines.

As if on cue, Mayor Bader announces to the party that his first act as Mayor will be to fire Opportunistic Prick Halloran, and reinstate Eli as Sheriff.  Ladies and gentlemen, it looks like there is a New / Old Sheriff in Town.

HAHA!  Sayonara, SUCKA!

So, it would appear that Nucky was looking out for his little brother, after all!  He just needed the Little Guy to lay low, until elections were over, so, as not to bring about any bad publicity related to Eli’s “Casino Scandal” to the Republican party.  The problem is that Eli doesn’t seem to see it that way . . .

Jimmy doesn’t really see it that way, either.  And when he drunkenly starts asking people at the Mayor’s party whether Nucky  “pimped their mothers out too,” (which is REALLY inappropriate, but kind of hilarious), Eli realizes he may have just located an unlikely ally . . .

Later, a pretty wasted Jimmy arrives at his Pedophile Dad’s house — still stewing over Big Pimp Nucky, and his wife’s Little Dutch Boy haircut.

Jimmy spikes Commodore’s milk with arsenic whiskey, and the Commodore rewards his son, by sharing with him a little bedtime stor,y about the time that Commodore took the fall for Nucky’s rigging of an earlier presidential election.  While Commodore stewed in jail, Nucky quickly rose to power, thereby terminating any chance Commodore would ever have of running Atlantic City again.

Commodore warns Jimmy, that Nucky is doing the same thing to him, using Jimmy’s talents for his own personal gain, and forcing him to do what Nucky himself doesn’t have the stomach for.  Commodore then reveals to Jimmy the big plans he has for his future.  “You are my flesh and blood.  You are going to take Atlantic City back for both of us.”

Then, who should enter the room?  But Nucky’s very own brother Eli . . . and he has . . . you guessed it . . . a plan.

Careful, Eli!  Remember what happened to that OTHER BROTHER who thought he could screw over his smarter, more powerful sibling and get away with it?

My advice to Eli?   Try not to go fishing anytime soon . . .

Margaret and Nucky — Together Forever For Now

While Pedophile, NotFredo, and Henry from Dawson’s Creek are plotting revenge against Nucky, Margaret is busy tarting herself up in a surprisingly low-cut flapper dress, in hopes of winning the Man Cheese back! “But what has made her change her mind, so suddenly?”  You ask . . .

Well, it all started when Margaret found a piece of rag in her cake . . .

Oh, don’t worry!  She baked it in there, on purpose!

You see, apparently, the Irish have something called a “Barnstack Cake,” into which you bake a rag, a coin, and a wedding ring.  (Sounds to me like a lawsuit waiting to happen . . .)  Then, when you eat the cake, if you get the piece with the wedding ring in it, you will get married.  If you get the piece with the coin in it, you will be rich.  And, if you get the piece with the rag in it, you are destined to be poor and destitute, FOREVER. 

Moron Nan got the wedding ring piece, thus proving Margaret’s Barnstack Cake must be TOTALLY broken!

But when Margaret got the rag piece, she got a little freaked out.  And so, off she ran to Nucky’s Party of the Week, Dressed to Screw.  At the party, just like in every romantic comedy I’ve ever seen, Nucky’s and Margaret’s eyes meet from across the room.  (I kept waiting for that song from Pretty in Pink to start playing in the background.) 

“I touch you once.  I touch you twice.  I won’t let go at any price . . .”

The pair come togther.  They drink champagne.  (Temperance Barbie, Margaret, is TOTALLY going to become an alchy!  I can just feel it!)  Margaret even calls him Uncle Nucky.  (Because EVERYBODY screws their uncles!)  

Then, it is announced that the Worst President in History, Warren G. Harding, has just been elected.  In his inaugural speech, he advocates a Return to Sh*t Normalcy.  Everybody claps, even THIS GUY . . .

Chalky is such a sex stallion, that he impregnated the ENTIRE ballroom, just by looking at them (even the old men!)

The episode ends with a slightly tipsy Margaret and Nucky leaving the party at dawn, strolling out toward the Boardwalk, and staring contentedly at the sunrise . . .

The whole thing was cheesy as heck, and yet, an oddly appropriate end to the show’s first season.  Except . . . was I the only one who expected someone to pop out from behind, and shoot Nucky in the head, at the last second?

Yeah . . . I definitely watch too many Gangster Movies . . .

See ya next year, folks!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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Who’s Your Daddy? – A Recap of Boardwalk Empire’s “Paris Green”

Those out there who once complained that nothing ever happens on Boardwalk Empire are certainly eating crow now, aren’t they?

After all, this was the episode that FINALLY answered both the question of Jimmy’s paternity, and why his mom looks the same age that he does!  Also this week, we learned: what Margaret REALLY does with her Lysol; why you should never EVER double cross that Creepy Psychopath Van Alden, and what type of things you have to say to get Steve Buscemi’s eyes to bug out of his head, like one of those cartoon characters, who just saw a Naked Lady.

But, I think my absolute FAVORITE thing about this episode was that, even though there was no Awesome Al Capone in it . . .

 .  . . there was also NO DUMB SLUT LUCY, either!

So, let’s bring on the sheer fabulousness.  Shall we?

Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?

Don’t you hate it when, you’ve tied yourself upside down from the ceiling, and you can’t seem to get out of your straight jacket?  Well, so does Harry Houdini’s much less famous brother, NotHoudini.  We learn this during a VERY embarrassing public performance, during which NotHoudini takes WAY TOO LONG to get himself out of his straight jacket, while thousands look on, boredly. 

Later, back at Nucky’s mansion, NotHoudini redeems himself (sort of) by performing that So-Easy-a-Five-Year-Old-Can-Do-It, Hide the Jewelry Trick on Margaret.  Margaret is clearly impressed.  Thus, proving that she should really get out more!  I blame Nucky, of course.

“Wow!  Could you pull a rabbit out of a hat, and a coin out of my ear too?”

“I knew you were deceiving me, and yet you still succeeded in doing it,” Margaret marvels.

The aforementioned statement ends up being a major exercise in foreshadowing.  As it turns out, both Margaret’s “willingness” to be deceived, and that “hidden” necklace Nucky gave her, will be featured prominently in one of the episode’s main plotlines.

Later, when Nucky’s brother, Eli, rips him a new tushy, for letting his girlfriend get too involved in his business affairs, Nucky responds by comparing Eli to NotHoudini.  “If it weren’t for who his brother was, nobody would give a f*&k [about him],” exclaims Nucky.

And just to prove to Eli, how serious he is about nobody giving a sh*t about him, Nucky rips Eli’s Sheriff position right out from under his nose, and awards it to Opportunistic Prick Halloran.  Opportunistic Prick, if you recall, had the sheer GALL to ask Nucky for the position last week, mere days after Eli had been shot.

Don’t worry Eli!  You could always decide to become a Magician like NotHoudini.  You’re already pretty good at making opportunities disappear . . .

“Wash Your Mouth Out With Lysol, Just Like You Wash Your . . . Cat!”

Thank you, Boardwalk Empire for reminding me just how much I’ve missed Steve Buscemi’s Crazy Eyes!

Shortly after NotHoudini’s in-house performance, Nucky’s friend, Random Dude with Mustache, starts blubbering like a baby, because he lost all his money in a Ponzi Scheme.  Scratch that.  He lost his money in THE Ponzi Scheme, orchestrated by Charles Ponzi, himself.   Now, you’ve got to admit, that’s pretty impressive.  I mean that’s the type of thing they make souvenirs for!

Unfortunately, Random Dude with Mustache’s “concubine,” Annabelle Lotsa Wigs, doesn’t think so.  And when she tries to gather up the money she’s been stealing from him all these years, and skip town, she’s APPALLED to find out that HE STOLE IT FIRST!

It’s not easy being sleazy . . .

So, of course, Annabelle Lotsa Wigs, upon realizing that her Meal Ticket has expired, runs crying to Former F*&k Buddy, Nucky for some dough.   She even offers to give him a little screw, for good luck.  During their foreplay little exchange, who should walk in, but . . . LARGE MARGE!

To say Margaret is pissed off is an understatement, especially since SHE just lent Lotsa Wigs $50 herself, earlier.  So Margie starts really letting Nucky have it, in that grumpy passive-aggressive style she’s mastered so well, over the years.  Before you know it, EVERYTHING that has been unspoken between Nucky and Margaret throught the season, comes bubbling to the surface. 

Margaret calls Nucky out on making her do his political dirty work, while not permitting her to ask questions about his criminal enterprises.  Nucky calls Margaret out on being a hypocrite.  “If you were really a good person, you wouldn’t be here right now,” he remarks SAGELY.

He’s kind of got a point there . . .

Then, Nucky calls Margaret out on using Lysol to . . . ahem . . . clean herself.

Lysol:  It Gets the Sperm Out!

But, hey, Margaret doesn’t want to risk making any more Little Nuckys with her Nookie!  After all, there’s a good chance one of those bastard children might end up getting the Crazy Eyes Gene! 

However, things don’t REALLY get heated, until Margaret (rightfully) accuses Nucky of having her husband killed.  Sure, he was a stinking drunk loser, who beat her, and made her lose her baby.  But that doesn’t mean he DESERVED TO DIE!  Oh .  . . wait . . . yes it does. 

Yet, when Nucky (rightfully) replies that Margaret is WAY better off with her old husband dead, Margaret SLAPS HIM IN THE FACE!

Is it just me, or does she do that to people, A LOT?

Well . . . that Bitch Slap was MORE than enough ammunition for Nucky’s Crazy Eyes to come out to play.  Suddenly, the Nuckster is hurling Margaret’s Lysol bottle into a mirror, shattering it.   “You won’t be needing THIS anymore!”  Nucky yelps. 

(Now, I’m assuming he was referring to the Lysol Douche Bottle.  But wouldn’t it be funny if he was talking about the mirror?)

Margaret calls Nucky’s bluff, and definitively ends his Nookie (at least, for now).  Toward, the end of the episode, Nucky learns from Richard Harrow, that Margaret “fired” the Sweet Tin Man Serial Killer, packed up her kiddies, and fled Concubine Row, leaving the necklace that Nucky bought for her behind.

“Was it something I said?”

At the end of the episode, Nucky visits a fortune teller, to find out whether there is any hope of him getting laid in the near future.  In payment for her services, Nucky undoubtedly will give said fortune teller a used necklace, and a half-empty bottle of Lysol . . .

“Look Mom, Ghosts!”

Speaking of people who’s futures are going to suck, when we last left the Most Boring Closeted Lesbian in the World, Angela, she was making plans to escape to Paris with Little Tommy and her Kissing Friend, the Photographer’s Wife . . .

So, this week, Angela packs her bags, and, after leaving a note for Jimmy, heads off to the Photography Shop to meet her Destiny.

Unfortunately, when Angela arrives at the shop, she learns that Destiny left without her.  Some dude sweeping the floor, informs a very heartbroken Angela that the Photographer and his Wife skipped town permanently in the dead of night, supposedly en route to Paris.  And yet, a photograph Tommy finds on the floor of the otherwise empty shop seems to suggest otherwise.  “Look Mom, Ghosts!”  Angela’s son exclaims.

When Angela examines the picture she sees to her horror, that it is a wedding photo of the photographer and his wife, both with their faces crudely scratched out.  No more Kissing Friend, for Angela!

“Well, great!  Now, I have NO PURPOSE WHATSOEVER for being on this show!”

When Angela arrives home, a rather Sinister Looking Jimmy appears shortly thereafter.  “I know what you’ve been doing,” he says cryptically, to a very freaked out Angela. 

(Has Jimmy read the “Dear JimmyJohn” note Angela left him?  Did he order a hit on the Photographer and his Wife?   Or did he just want Angela to THINK they were dead?  So many questions . . . So little recapping time.)

In fact, Jimmy pretty much ignores Angela, throughout the entire scene, talking instead to Tommy, about how much fun the two of them will have together, once he gets older.  (Translation:  “You’re NEVER EVER taking my kid from me, B*tch!”) 

But the best part of the entire scene comes at the very end.  In it, Jimmy tells Angela to put Tommy to bed, and then very dramatically closes the door in her face.  The manner in which he does it is very reminiscent of that FABULOUS final scene from The Godfather, where Michael Corleone lies to his wife about killing his sister’s husband, and then closes the door in her face, as he begins to take over his father’s position, as head of the Corleone crime family, in earnest.

The fact that nobody has thought to excerpt this iconic scene on YouTube annoys me greatly.  Because I really, really, really wanted to include it in this recap!  If you haven’t seen the film yet, Netflix it now, or Richard Harrow will shoot you, right under your eyeball!

We are Family . . .

Hey there, Commodore!  You know what grown men who diddle 13-year olds deserve?  Arsenic-flavored Cookies, that’s what!

Jimmy receives a call early on in the episode from his mom that his father is dying.  “What do you want me to do about it?”  Jimmy asks gruffly.

Ahhh . . . there’s nothing like the love between a father and son!

Apathy aside, Jimmy decides to show up at the Commodore’s Death Bed to support his mother. 

During our stay over at the Commodore’s, we learn a thing or two about Jimmy’s origins.  As it turns out, Nucky pimped out Mama Gillian to the Commodore, when she was just THIRTEEN and Commodore was FIFTY FOUR!

For a lot of women, that’s not even medically possible!  Poor Gillian!  I mean, she probably wasn’t even old enough to buy LYSOL then!  Besides, who the heck wants to be a grandmother by their early 30’s?  That”d be pretty darn awful!

No wonder Jimmy’s got such a chip on his shoulder!  “I’m what time and circumstances have made me,” Jimmy remarks, when a sickly Commodore inquires after Jimmy’s life choices.

“And, thankfully, I got most of my looks from my mother’s side of the family.”

Commodore then tells Jimmy that it was HIS Pervy Ass that built Atlantic City up from a dank swamp into the Cest Pool of Sin it is now!  (I think he deserves a round of applause for that, don’t you?  No?  Still mad at him about the whole pedophile thing?  Yeah . . . me too.  No applause then.)

“Yeah, you and your Big Blue Ox,” Jimmy snarks.

You know you’re watching a “period piece,” when one of its “pop culture references” is about Paul Bunyan . . .

“What I’m saying is that the wrong man is running this town!”  Commodore yells, frustratedly.

“Hey!  I resemble that remark!”

And how does Jimmy respond to his absentee father’s suggestion that HE should be running Atlantic City, instead of Nucky.  “I don’t feel well,” he says, before LITERALLY walking out of the room, and “Tossing his Cookies.”

As we find out later, those “cookies” happen to have been doused with arsenic.  We learn this when the Commodore’s doctor finds evidence of the poison in the Pedophile’s blood and hair sample.  As luck would have it, a bottle labeled POISON in really big letters is sitting conveniently under the Commodore’s bed, and NOBODY NOTICED IT BEFORE!  Go figure!

The most obvious culprit in Cookie-Gate is Nucky himself.  After all, he had the most to gain in offing the Commodore.  He wanted his job (and GOT IT).  Next on the list of suspects is Jimmy’s mom, Gillian, who seemed just a little too cool with caring for the man who knocked her up, while she was still wearing a training bra.  Having been at the Commodore’s bedside for a few weeks now, she certainly had the “opportunity” to poison him.  Then again, it could have always been Cookie Monster . . .

Everybody knows how much HE hates pedophiles!

In Other News .  . .

“One ringy dingy . . . two ringy dingy . . .”

It seems that Arnold Rothstein has not been off the phone once, since the pilot episode.  If anybody needs a good cell phone plan, it’s him.  Wait . . . your saying there were no cell phones in the 1920’s?  Sucks to be Arnie!  Anyway, some “consultant Rothstein is talking to, tells him to go to Chicago.  You know what that means, don’t you?

More Capone, next week!  WOO HOO!

Also . . .

Richard Harrow wants to get the D’Alessio Crime Family out of hiding, by killing their mother, sisters, and dentist (?).  Criminals always did have really f*cked up teeth.  That’s not very nice, Tin Man!

And finally . . .

Nelson Van Alden Gives Me Nightmares . . .

R.I.P. Agent Sebso!

When we first see Wackadoo Van Alden, he (with good reason) is still skeptical of his underling Sebso’s excuse for shooting Jimmy’s snitch.  Sebso calls Nucky to whine about it.  So, Nucky decides to throw his lackey a bone that ends up choking him to death.  to help him remedy the situation.  Nucky provides Sebso with intel on a supposed illegal liquor distillery.  This way, Sebso can pass the information along to Van Alden, thereby regaining Spanky’s Trust. 

However, while the pair are searching for the distillery, they come across some Baptists.

Creepo Van Alden and the Baptist minister start engaging in some “Religious Talk.” During the whole scene, I keep waiting for Sir-Belts-a-Lot to walk right into that river(?) / lake (?) and clean that Dirty Skank Lucy’s Juices right off him.  But he doesn’t.  (He must have Lysol at home.) 

Instead, Mr. Self-Righteous Jack Off acts APPALLED, by the fact that Sebso is Jewish, and, therefore, cannot be nearly as good of a person as the bat sh*t crazy, evil, jerks off to 16-year old girl’s pictures, cheats on his wife with whores, steals money, refuses to support his wife emotionally or financially Angelic Van Alden.

So, that he can start to trust the “Heathen” Sebso again, Van Alden decides to “baptize” him. 

And by “baptize” him, I mean repeatedly dunk him in the water until he drowns, while an ENTIRE CROWD OF “GOOD” BAPTISTS watch him do it, and do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO HELP!

*Kitty Genovese, once again shakes her head in sympathy with the Now-Dead Sebso’s plight.*

To cover his ass, Van Alden makes some B.S. excuse about having “purged evil from the world” or some crap like that.

Then this Horrible Excuse for a Human Being walks out of the water, as if he is the Lord, himself.  And an ENTIRE CROWD of god-fearing individuals, who just WATCHED HIM KILL SOMEONE, just let the Murderer GO ON HIS MERRY WAY!  Then again, maybe that had something to do with the loaded gun Crazytown was carrying, as moved through the crowd . . .

But still!  That group could have TOTALLY taken the bastard down!  (Those little grannies may look wimpy . . . but they’ve got REALLY long nails, and usually aren’t afraid to use them!)

And . . .  that was the episode in a nutshell.  Can you believe next week is ALREADY the Season Finale?  It seems like only yesterday, that I was using this picture . . .

 . . . and this picture . . .

 . . . for the first time.

See you next week!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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“I could see into your soul (if you still had one).”- A Recap of Boardwalk Empire’s “The Emerald City”

“Mirror, Mirror, On the Wall, who has the Creepiest Stalker of them all?”

“Oh, Margaret, honey.  That is ALL YOU!”

There’s a bit of bad behavior in EVERY episode of Boardwalk Empire.  But this week’s hour seemed to have more than most . . .  When Al Capone and That Sniper Guy are the most well-behaved characters of the hour, you know you’re in for some SERIOUSLY NAUGHTY STUFF.  Santa would not approve . . .

Well . . . maybe THAT Santa would . . .

So, without further adieu, let’s return to “The Emerald City,” to find out who topped Bad Santa’s Naughty List, and who played “nice” . . .

Richard Harrow:  A Man with a Heart of Gold (and a Face that Scares the Sh*t out of the Kiddies)

Don’t you hate it, when you’re dreaming about that hooker you slept with, and some bratty kid wakes you up, by screaming and crying about how hideous you look?

“Hey kid!  Why are you looking at me like that?  Do I have something in my eye?” 

 Apparently, Nucky has found use for Jimmy’s new friend Richard Harrow.  He has decided to employ the expert sniper as a “bodyguard” for Margaret and her children, following the whole “shooting” incident.  This would be fine, except for the fact that Margaret’s kids can’t stand to look at Poor Richard’s face, without bursting into tears or hurling.  Fortunately, Margaret has an idea!

She invites Richard to hang out with her and the kiddies, while she is reading them The Wizard of Oz.

When they get to the part about the Tin Man, Richard pipes in and says that HE IS THE TINMAN!

Of course, the kids think this is really cool.  Because EVERYONE likes to hang out with a CELEBRITY, right?   Even celebrities who are missing an eyeball, and have really scary chewed-up looking faces . . . 

Now the kids are just in LOVE with their new friend, The Tin Man.  This means that Margaret has to apologize to Richard for being such a heinous b*tch about his appearance, when she first met him.  Richard, being the kickass stand-up guy, he is, says, “No problem!  I freak myself out, when I look in the mirror too!”

Awww, Tin Man!  How I heart you!

Speaking of celebrities I adore . . .

Al Capone – When Naughty Boys Grow into Naughtier Man

Before the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre . . .before he made history as one of the Most Cutthroat Criminals of ALL TIME, Capone was just a kid at heart.  This was a guy who got his jollies out of putting sparklers in his boss’ cigarettes,” beating up reporters, and shooting Jimmy in the ear.  But that all changed when Capone went to a Bar Mitzvah . . .

Stop laughing, I’m serious!

At the Bar Mitzvah that CHANGED EVERYTHING, a Cute Little Old Jewish Dude told Capone that Age 13 is more than old enough to take responsibility for one’s actions.  And, as we all know, Capone is quite a bit older than 13, and yet is still making fart jokes, and putting sparklers in people’s cigarettes.  Cute Little Old Jewish Dude also dissed on Capone’s clothing, telling him that he was a man wearing the hat of a little boy. 

If Cute Little Old Jewish Dude had met Capone a few years later, that remark would have earned him a cap in his ass! 

But Baby Capone took the advice to heart.  Later that evening, he visited Torrio, wearing a BIG BOY’S HAT . . .

With a new sense of purpose, Capone tells Torrio that he is ready to act like a man, and take on more responsibility within the organization.

And, all I can say, is it’s ABOUT DAMN TIME! 

Meanwhile, back in New Jersey, Al Capone’s pal, Jimmy, is trying to get laid . . .

Jimmy Darmody = Bad to the Bone!

“Darmody family — You just beat the crap out of a sort-of innocent (but douchey) family photographer, what are you going to do now?  (Bear in mind that Disney Land hasn’t been built yet . . .)”

When we first check back in with the Darmody family, Angela is hard at work painting one of her signature Ugly Ass Pieces of Artwork.  Jimmy, who hasn’t been laid since that time last week — when he did it with Angela on the kitchen table — starts telling her how gorgeous it is, in hopes of getting back in her pants.  “When you are at war, it is easy to forget that things like art and beauty exist,” Jimmy waxes poetically. 

(In other words, “I fought for my country, dammit.  Doesn’t that merit at least one good f*ck from you?”)

Apparently, it does!

Did I mention, that before these two DID IT, they “played with paint,” in a way that TOTALLY reminded me of that Pottery Scene from Ghost, only not nearly as sexy?

“Oh Mr. Swayze!  Your POTTERY is so big, strong and hard.  I love to knead it with my fingers . . .”

Still smelling of sex, the Darmody family heads out for a short walk on the Boardwalk.  Little Tommy runs ahead to the Photographer’s shop.  There, he sees a picture of the Photographer and his wife in the window, and wisely tells Jimmy, “That’s Mommy’s Kissing Friend!”

OOPS!

Yes, boys and girls!  Angela Darmody is clearly a model of good parenting.  Not only does she paint pornographic pictures, and ask her son to evaluate them, she also apparently MAKES OUT WITH PEOPLE THAT AREN’T HER HUSBAND, RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIM. 

As if Tommy D, wasn’t screwed up enough by his mother, his father has to go to THIS . . .

AND THIS . . .

 . . . to that Dweeby Photographer with the Pedophile Mustache who’s NOT ACTUALLY SCREWING HIS WIFE.  Of course, about 30 men and women, gather to watch “the show,” but NOT ONE comes to the poor guy’s rescue! 

(Poor Kitty Genovese from the Future nods sympathetically.)

Obviously, Jimmy assumed that it was the Photographer to whom his son was referring, and NOT the Photographer’s Wife.  (Otherwise, he probably would have started drooling, and asked to watch.  We all know how much guys love their lesbians!) 

Later, the Dull as Dishwater Angela (SERIOUSLY?  What the heck do all these people see in this BORING woman?) and the Photographer’s wife meet to commiserate, make out some more, and plan their Great Escape to Paris . . .

Yeah, it’s nice to dream and all.  But I’m pretty sure one of you is getting whacked, by the end of the season.  And I don’t mean in the “good and fun” way either . . .

Speaking of getting whacked . . .

Van Alden Grosses Me Out for the SECOND time this season . . .

Of course, Awful Lucy had to be involved .  . . Can they PLEASE just kill this character off already?  I’ll pay them!

When we first see Van Alden this week, he is getting his ass handed to him by his boss, over at the FBI .  . .

 . . . for letting his crooked runt of a minion conveniently kill the ONLY eyewitness to Darmody’s involvement in the Liquor Heist killings.  Nelson’s boss basically tells Nelson that he sucks at life, and I agree. 

To make himself feel better, Creepy Van Alden decides to visit Margaret at her new home, and show off his spot-on impersonation of Anthony Bates from Psycho

They do kind of look alike .  . .

Nelson hopes that doing this, will cause Margaret to fall madly in love with him.  And they can live Crazily Ever After . . .  (Thus, proving that Nelson isn’t just TOTALLY loony tunes, he’s also a moron .  . .)

At first, when Van Alden shows Margaret that Ellis Island picture of her that he’s been literally “whacking off too” all Season, she thinks that she’s about to get deported . . .

But that’s not it at all.  Instead, Van Alden has come to “save her soul from eternal hellfire and damnation.”  (Talk about an ambitious visit!)

“I can see into you’re soul, every night when I look at this picture,” Van Alden exclaims SUPER CREEPILY, grabbing Margaret’s hands, as if he’s about to propose.

“HELP!  Where’s my Scary Sniper Friend, when I need him?”

Nelson begins his pitch, You’re life doesn’t have to be like this rich, decadent, care free, work free, exciting, fun.  I can offer you SO MUCH MORE craziness, back slashings, poverty, self-righteous rantings and ravings, loveless letters about the plumbing, crippling boredom.”

“Hi, Margaret.  My name is Mrs. Van Alden.  I’d like to let you know, that I will gladly give you Nelson, if you really want him.”

Fortunately, Margaret has grown a backbone, since her days of getting regular Nookie with Nucky.  So, she kicks Crazy Town Van Alden’s ass out of the house!

So, Mr. Teetotaler Van Alden — intent on having Nucky’s Sloppy Seconds, if it kills him — heads to a bar, and, after having a few shots (but not nearly enough to make Lucy attractive), approaches Lady Dumb Slut, and takes her back to his ill-furnished apartment.  There, we are treated to a full frontal of Lucy, and four minutes of the LEAST HOT PORNO SCENE you could ever imagine!  (Seriously, I’ve seen puppets have more enjoyable sex than this . . .)

When it’s all over, Lucy is still giving off moans of  fake pleasure . . . probably because the sex was so dull, and she was so wasted, that she didn’t even realize the romp had ended . . .

Speaking of “Faking it” . . .

Margaret Builds a Better Future for Womankind Herself

When Margaret learns that women have finally won the right to vote, she is understandably thrilled.  She’s even excited enough to have a few drinks with Nucky, in celebration.  Margaret becomes less excited however, when Nucky asks her to speak at the League of Women Voters event, on behalf of Mayor Elect Mr. Bayer, despite the fact that he has no political experience whatsoever, and was basically nominated, jut so he could do Nucky’s bidding.

Personal reservations aside, Margaret actually gives a fairly rousing speech for the construction worker.  (Heck, that “building a future” metaphor was so impressive, I would probably vote for the guy!  And I KNOW what a lame-o he is!) 

Later, however, when Bayer gets up to give HIS speech, and Nucky’s too busy plotting his own politics to even pay attention to it, Margaret begins to wonder whether she did the right thing . . .

(Psst, Margaret.  You DIDN’T do the right thing!  But you and your kids are filthy rich now, and you never have to work again.  So WHO CARES?)

Speaking of doing the WRONG THING . . .

Note to Self:  Choking Someone is a VERY Inefficient Way of Killing Them.  (Guns are BETTER)

Hoping that by playing both sides, he can keep himself from getting killed, Sleazeball Mickey Doyle approaches Nucky to rat out the D’ellessio’s for (1) robbing his “tax collector,” (2) killing one of Chalky White’s associates, and (3) trying to kill Nucky on the Boardwalk.  He also exposes Rothstein’s alliance with the D’Alessio’s, and their plans to edge out Nucky for control of the Atlantic City liquor business. 

Nucky shows his gratitude to Mickey for offering up this information, by doing this . . .

However, upon coming to the conclusion that Mickey is worth more to him alive than dead (for now), Nucky ultimately lets him go, with a pat on the back, and a drink filled with Jimmy’s saliva (and we all KNOW where all that mouth has been!). 

Later, Nucky approaches Bootlegger Chalky White with a plan to screw over the D’allesio’s (and, by extension, Arnold Rothstein), and exact revenge.  As part of the set up, Nucky instructs Chalky to pretend his relations wth Nucky have soured, and that he would like to make a deal with Rothstein, instead.

Chalky agrees to go along with the plan.  However, when he actually meets with the D’Alessio’s and Lansky, he quickly figures out that THEY were behind the murder of his associate.  Let’s just say, he’s not happy about it . . .

Once Lansky and the two dumb D’Alessio’s, who’s first names I don’t know (Does it really matter?  They are all going to end up dead, anyway!) are incapacitated, Nucky and Jimmy are called to the scene . . .

The tall skinny funny looking D’Alessio is dumb enough to ask Jimmy if he’s going to shoot him, for mouthing off.  “Well, I wasn’t going to, but you kind of talked me into it,” Jimmy replies.

Dumb D’Alessio #1 is dead now.  And Dumb D’Alessio #2 is blubbering like a baby. 

“I think I just pissed my pants.”

Considering he’s unarmed, and just watched his Funny Looking Brother get his head blown off, you’d think the dude would have learned to be quiet.  But NO! The Dude really wants his SAG card starts threatening Chalky, telling him that his other, equally dumb, brothers are going to “string [Chalky] up, just like they did to his business associate.”

Chalky doesn’t like that very much, so he starts choking the guy.   And it takes a LOOOOOOOOOONG time.  So, long that Jimmy leaves to take a leak, and a bored Nucky starts cleaning the other D’Alessio off the floor.  Even Meyer Lansky is trying to look at his watch.  Unfortunately, his hands are tied behind his back.  So, he closes his eyes, and takes a nap . . .

FINALLY Dumb D’Alessio #2 is dead.   So, Nucky wanders over to a dozing Meyer Lansky to untie him.  “Tell Mr. Rothstein what you witnessed here,” Nucky informs his new personal messenger service.

Relieved to still be alive, historically, the guy lived to be 80, so we know his character isn’t dying anytime soon Meyer dashes off to deliver “Nucky’s message” to his boss . . .

“You’re telling me, he could have shot him, but he CHOKED HIM INSTEAD?  That must have taken FOREVER!  I bet you haven’t eaten in hours.  Come over to my place for some milk and cookies!”

At the end of the episode, Nucky comes back to Margaret’s bed smelling like Dead A’lessio’s.  He tells his lover how proud he is of her for being a Big Fat Liar, during that speech she gave earlier.  However,  a guilty-feeling Margaret just dejectedly crinkles her nose. 

“I’m totally judging you, right now.”

Note to Nucky:  If you plan on getting laid, after a night of doing EVIL, you might want to consider showering first . . .

[www.juliekushner.com]

 

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Serena Gets Screwed (But not in the way you might think.) – A Recap of Gossip Girl’s “The Witches of Bushwick”

“Now, who’s the Craziest B*tch of Them All?  That Evil Raccoon Zombie’s got NOTHING ON ME!”

Well, that Juliet Sharp ended up being a Real Wackadoo, didn’t she?  Page Six scandals, phony makeout sessions, best friend frame-ups, and ill-timed text messages . . . those are all things that come with the territory, when you live on the Upper East Side.  Heck, that’s just another Day at the Office, for these folks!

  But DRUGGING and KIDNAPPING SOMEONE?  Now, that’s just EFFIN CRAZY!   That’s the stuff Lifetime movies are made of (or The Roommate, starring Leighton Meester).

That’s right, Serena.  The Triumverate of Evil is COMING.  And you can run, but you CAN’T HIDE!

While Serena tries to make her escape, perhaps, we should get started on the recap . . .

Serena’s Love Life = Ridiculously Complex Mathematical Equation

“Math is hard . . . but I am easy.

When the episode opens, we find Eric I-Never-Have-Any-Worthwhile-Storylines-and-am-Therefore Forced-to-do-Lame-Things-Like-Graphing-My-Sister’s-Lovelife van der Woodsen and his boyfriend doing precisely what you would expect any hot young gay couple to do, when they have a Big Mansion to themselves . . . drawing Venn Diagrams?

“Are you KIDDING ME with this?  This is what I’ve been reduced to?  Have you forgotten that I was once in a movie with ANGE-FRIGGIN-LINA JOLIE?”

“Yeah . . . I thought so . . .”

So, anyway, the boys are hoping that this little visual aid will help Serena choose a MAN.  Now, unfortunately, the GG producers didn’t really show us too much of the Diagram.  And yet, I’m willing to bet it looked something like this . . .

Now, before you start getting all mad at me, please realize that I am fully aware that not all of the people listed here were actually on the show.  I improvised a bit . . .

Speaking of visual aids, Lily comes home with another one.  SURPRISE, SURPRISE!  “Someone” has leaked the news of Serena’ little relationship with Professor Hotpants Colin to the media, and it somehow landed on Page Six.  (Talk about a slow news day!  Page Six clearly isn’t what it used to be!)

I’m simply posting this picture here, because I fear I will not have an excuse to use it again on this blog.  *Sigh*

To make matters worse, Dean I-Keep-Tabs-on-All-My-Students’-Sex-Lives-and-Repeatedly-Threaten-to-Expel-Them-for-Completely-Nonsensical-Reasons Reuther would like to talk with Lily and Serena about this most recent development.  Apparently, Dean Reuther is absolutely APPALLED by the notion that one of her students would have the nerve to *gasp* publicly makeout with a guy who taught class at Columbia for a few days.

The HORROR!

To further complicate matters, the Paparazzi have quickly grown tired of tracking the drunken escapades of Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan, and would much rather stalk the Columbia campus, in hopes of finding one of its students FRENCH KISSING.  Unnerved by the “terrible press,” which will SURELY topple Columbia’s chances of besting Stanford in the U.S. News and World Report Rankings this year, the Dean not-so-subtly suggests that Serena withdraw from school.

But fear not, kiddies!  Mama Lily has come to the RESCUE!

Initially, Lily attempts to solve the Serena’s “The Dean Hates Her” Conundrum, by doing what she does best: throwing money at the problem.  “I’d be willing to give you an endowment, that could perhaps be used to build a moat around your school, to keep out those pesky papparazzi.”

“Golly, Gee, Serena’s Mom!  That’s a marvelous idea!  Can we throw in a Fire Breathing Dragon too?”  Dean Reuther inquires.

But alas, the “super moral” Dean Reuther cannot be bought.   She CAN, however, be blackmailed.  Lily wises implies that should Dean Reuther force Serena to withdraw from Columbia, Lily will publicly expose the “sexual harassment”  and “gender discrimination,” her daughter suffered at the hands of the school and its faculty.

Of course, the Dean has NOTHING to say, in response to that.  Well, played Mrs. van der Woodsen-Bass-Humphrey and, however, many other friggin last names you have!  Thanks to you, Serena will be able to stay at Columbia . . . at least, for the next 35 minutes or so.

3 Words, 8 Letters =Pure HEAVEN for Chair Fans!

This scene renders me SPEECHLESS.  Fortunately, however, it has the OPPOSITE effect on Chuck Bass . . .

Yes, boys and girls!  Chuck and Blair spend yet another episode wrapped in one another’s arms for almost the ENTIRE HOUR!  And I for one, couldn’t be happier, well . . . except for that scene at the end  . . .

When the episode opens, Chuck and Blair have finished another raucous session of LOOOOOOVE MAKING. 

Based on their post-coital discussion, we learn that Chuck is ONCE AGAIN interested in rehashing his fallback plotline of “The Empire Hotel Strikes Back.”  Meanwhile, Blair is repeating her fallback plotline of “I must sacrifice my values and happiness to join some lame organization that I think will make me richer and more powerful.”  This time, Blair’s snooty organization of choice is the HIGHLY creatively titled, Girls, Inc., run by that Bastion of Social Grace Herself, Anne “Wife of a Convict” Archibald.

(Note:  It has been brought to my attention that Girls, Inc. is an ACTUAL organization  — one that I am sure is lovely.  Please know that everything I say from here on in about “Girls, Inc,” refers to the fictional chapter of it portrayed in the show, and NOT the real organization.  No hate mail, please! :))

CHUCK:  “You know, B.  We should really invest in some more original plotlines.  Because this is like the fifth time I’ve tried to “Take Back the Empire” and the 87th time you’ve tried to join a Lame Self-Righteous Club for Women . . .”

BLAIR:  “I know C.  But at least the writers are FINALLY allowing us to sort of be together.  So, we really shouldn’t complain.  Otherwise, they might do something drastic, like make you screw that Raccoon Zombie again  . . .”

As part of his “Empire Hotel Strikes Back” campaign, Chuck decides to throw a Black and White Ball.  He and Blair make plans to have dinner together before the event.  And while they keep assuring eachother the dinner date is only a “friendly one,” the hungry looks in both of their eyes say differently.

In the first of two sets of parallel scenes, we see Blair talking with Bastion of Society / Wife of a Convict, Anne Archibald, about how the new face of Girls, Inc.  CANNOT, absolutely CANNOT fraternize with someone of questionable moral character, like Chuck Bass or Nate Archibald’s dad.  Blair, of course, assures Anne that she has no plans to fraternize with Chuck Bass or Nate Archibald’s dad.  At first, I thought Anne looked kind of shocked and frightened by Blair’s assurances . . . then I realized it was just the Botox talking.

Surprised Face Monkey can certainly relate to Anne’s predicament.

Meanwhile, P.R. Represenative from Hell (remember her from LAST SEASON?), K.C., is telling Chuck he has to go back to being the Hedonist Man Whore he has always been, if he wants to “Take Back the Empire.”  And, shocker of shockers, that means ditching “Sweet Innocent Blair.”

Had this been Season 1 or 2, we would have likely had to suffer through Chuck and Blair both suddenly being cold to one another, with each not telling the other one why.  Fortunately, our favorite couple seems to have actually grown up some since the start of the show.

And, in an INSANELY cute scene, during which both Chuck and Blair are talking on the phone to eachother, while wearing red robes, and getting pedicures, each admits to the other why the pair can no longer be seen together in public.

Chuck Bass is probably the only man on the planet who can make THIS look masculine and sexy . . .

You all know what this means, don’t you?  That’s right!  SUPER HOT SECRET SEX!

Clearly, the King and Queen of Scams, Chuck and Blair don’t even have to pause in undressing, before they’ve already derived a solution to their mutually difficult predicaments.  Chuck will convert his boring Black and White Ball, into a sensual and super naughty “Saints and Sinners” Masquerade Ball.  For her part, Blair will publicly denounce the Ball, to politically distance herself from Chuck, and show Bastion of Society / Wife of a Convict Anne Archibald that she can be just as “Innocent and Sweet” (read: “Stuck-up and Hypocritical”) as the LAST “Face of Girl’s Inc.,” namely, Anne Archibald, herself.

Every time I think I’ve seen the HOTTEST SEX SCENE Chair has to offer, they go and TOP IT FOR ME!  And this week was no exception.  Chuck’s and Blair’s scheming, while amorously massaging eachother’s skin, and ripping one another’s clothes off, is all KINDS OF HOT. 

But things REALLY get steamy, when the couple falls backward onto the bed, and a fully-aroused Chuck, in a moment of uninhibited passion, whispers breathlessly in Blair’s ear, “I love you.”

My sentiments exactly, Blair.

But, alas, we must leave our UNDENIABLY SEXY COUPLE, and head LOW DOWN into the dark depths of Brooklyn, were something EEEVVVVVILL is afoot . . .

Raccoon Zombie + Psycho Stalker + Dullnessa = The Triumverate of Evil (and some REALLY BAD HAIR)

JENNY:  So, we’ve come to get revenge on BLAIR, right?  Because for four seasons, I’ve been battling it out with BLAIR.

VANESSA:  Me too.  The few times, I’ve actually had my own plotline, it always had something to do with me fighting with BLAIR.

JULIET:  No, actually, we’re screwing over SERENA, today

JENNY and VANESSA:  ???????  Ummm . . . OK.  It’s not like we have anything better to do.

So, Jenny, Juliet, and Vanessa throw a little Pow Wow in Juliet’s room, to plan their BIG attack on Serena.  And I have to say, as much as I am a total NON FAN of these three, their “Revenge” Plot was pretty darn impressive.

JULIET:  “Did you hear that?  She actually said something nice about us.”

RACCOON ZOMBIE:  “I KNOW!  I think it’s because I stopped eating out of her trash cans . . .”

The plan begins with Vanessa reuniting The Ambiguously Gay Duo Best Friends, Dan and Nate.

DAN:  *sings*  “And we’re the two best friends that anybody could have . . . we’re the two best friends that anybody could have . . . and we’re going to do things . . . all the time together . . .”

 . . . who decide that, rather than fight over Serena, they will each take her out on a date, and, for lack of a better phrase, “Let the best man win.”

Because Jenny has switched the SIM card on Serena’s phone, but carried over her contact list, allowing Serena to make outgoing calls, but not incoming ones (and yet she STILL gets Gossip Girl Blasts . . . weird), Serena ends up standing up BOTH Dan and Nate on their respective dates.  And yet, because Dan and Nate have no balls sex with Serena is so mindblowing as to wipe out all mental reasoning in her male partners, rather than get mad, Dan and Nate inexplicably decide to give the “Love of Their Life” (at least, until next week) one more chance.

So, The Ambiguously Gay Duo these manly men corner Serena on the street, and tell her that she has until midnight to choose which “lucky dude” gets to be her Semi-Permanent Screw Buddy.

During the next phase of the plan, Jenny lets it slip to Mama Lily that Juliet is plotting to get vengeance on Serena.  So, Lily, of course, calls Juliet over for a meeting in order to pay her off try to straighten things out.  During the meeting, Juliet admits to leaking the Page 6 news, but alludes to their having been ANOTHER teacher-student incident involving Serena, back when she was in boarding school.  Juliet threatens to leak this information to Columbia.  So, of course, Lily pays for Juliet’s silence.

Wait . . . correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Juliet once mention that CRAZY BROTHER BEN was a teacher, before he landed himself in jail?

“That’s Professor Crazy Brother Ben to YOU!”

Is it possible that Ben taught at Serena’s boarding school, and something happened between them there that resulted in him being in jail, and brought about Psycho Stalker Juliet’s reign of terror on the Upper East Siders?

Don’t worry . . . it’s not a spoiler . . . just a conjecture.

Anywhoo . . . while shopping for a dress for the ball, Serena finds out that her mother has paid off Juliet.  Of course, Serena is WAY OFFENDED that her mom could POSSIBLY think SHE, of all people, would EVER sleep around with an older man.  She tells her mom, as much.

“Sleep around?  Moi?  NEVER!”

After getting a text message from Blair on Serena’s phone about Girls, Inc., Vanessa is instructed to send Serena’s resume to Anne Archibald, despite Serena having promised she would not apply for the position.  In a futile attempt to get us to like her character more, Vanessa appears mildly troubled by the EVIL TASK she is supposed to perform.

“I am mildly troubled by the Evil Task I am supposed to perform.”

And yet, after Juliet tells Vanessa what a LAME SUPER VILLAIN she is, and how the Raccoon Zombie is TOTALLY kicking her ass in terms of pure evilness, the Bohemian Brooklynite ends up sending the resume, anyway .  . .

In the final Pre-Party Phase of the “Bring Down Serena” plan of action, the Triumverate of Evil conveniently receive a Gossip Girl Blast showing the girls EXACTLY what Serena will be wearing to the Masquerade Ball . . .

Ummm . . . Serena?   You are on a public city street entering a CAB!  Is the mask really necessary?

“Take off your clothes, and get out your credit card,” demands Jenny of Juliet, upon reading the blast.

“Not to be nitpicky or anything.  But aren’t you supposed to pay ME for this sort of thing?”

Elsewhere in Town . . .

 . . . Blair is SO touched, when she learns that Chuck has arranged for the best chefs in New York City to cater for her “Denounce Chuck Bass” Meeting with the folks from Girls, Inc., that she dashes off to the party (wearing nothing but slinky red lingerie) to give him an impromptu screw thank you.

EVIL comes to the Saints and Sinners Ball . . .

Wearing a refreshingly minimal amount of eye makeup, Jenny (see, I will call her by her real name . . . for now) and Juliet arrive at the Masquerade Ball wearing hooded capes, underneath which, both are clad in . . . you guessed it . . . Serena’s dress . . .

A masked Juliet enters the party first, and uses the name of a not-yet-arrived Serena to gain admittance.  So, of course, when the REAL Serena arrives at the party, she is initially not allowed in by the Dumb Doorman, who CLEARLY doesn’t read Page Six! 

Unfortunately, for Serena, she only carries around her driver’s license when she’s “shopping for a car,” so, she has no immediate way of proving she is who she says she is.  It must be nice to be clearly underage, and yet NEVER get carded in New York City.  And yet, I’m willing to bet Serena will CHANGE her views on carrying identification AFTER the night she’s about to have . . .

(To be honest, I’m not really sure HOW Jenny got into the party.  I highly doubt Chuck would put her on the list, and Juliet already used Serena’s name.  It’s possible they explained this during the episode, but I totally missed it.)

So, of course, Evil Serena Doppelgangers, Juliet and Jenny, start wreaking havoc on Serena’s love life.  When one of them kisses Dan passionately on the mouth . . .

 . . . I worry, for a second, that it’s his SISTER, Jenny!

But then I realize it’s probably Juliet, and I calm down a bit.  I do, however, think Jenny (dressed as Serena) kisses Nate . . .

 . . . which is kind of ironic, especially considering that THIS EXACT SCENARIO, has happened between these two once before . . .

You’d think Nate would learn by now.  Then again, he’s not that bright . . .

(By the way, have you checked out the HAIR on these girls, in the above pictures?  Question: If YOU were attending a hot sexy masquerade ball, wouldn’t YOU think to . . . you know . . . run a comb through your mop, first?  Then again, Serena and her hairbrush have never exactly been “friends.”  So, perhaps, they were just playing the part . . .)

Going to Hell in a Handbag . . . and LOVING EVERY MINUTE

While Taylor Momsen’s band, “Pretty Reckless,” belts out “Make Me Wanna Die” in the background (a song, which I shudder to admit, I’ve grown to appreciate, ever since they used it in The Vampire Diaries’ Season Premiere Promo), Blair locates Chuck at the party, in a clandestine area, behind a rather large, conveniently-placed curtain. 

“If the words you said were true, I’d want to know,” says Blair, clearly referring to Chuck’s orgasmic “I love you,” from earlier in the episode.

“I meant it.  I meant it with all my heart,” replies Chuck.

The enchanted looks exchanged by these two, when Chuck finally admits his love for Blair are literally enough to take my breath away.  Kudos to Chuck for manning up  about his true feelings WAY quicker than I expected him to do so!  “Are you going to say something?”  Chuck asks, smiling slightly, but, perhaps, a bit nervous as well . . .

“I will . . . I do,” replies Blair.

“AWWWW YEAH!  She sooooooo LOVES ME!”

“We can’t have everything,” says Chuck, illustrating his willingness to give up his Bad Boy image for Blair.

Then, suddenly, someone, who looks suspiciously like Serena, emerges from the shadows.

Silently NotSerena yanks down the curtain, revealing Chuck and Blair to the crowd . . . well . . . at least revealing them to the people in the front row.  To everyone else, they probably just looked like ants . . .

Honestly, the initial reveal struck me as kind of ho hum.  After all, there could be any of a million ways in which savvy schemers like Chuck and Blair could have explained away their mere presence behind that curtain.  But then, count on Chuck and Blair to make an otherwise lame reveal TOTALLY AWESOME!

“Let’s go down in flames together,” says Chuck to a beaming Blair, as he pulls her in for a deep passionate kiss . . .

Now THIS is something that cannot be explained away to a watching crowd . . .

And apparently, Chuck’s party has the WORST GUARDED guest list in town, because who shows up to conveniently witness the whole Makeout Session, but Bastion of Society / Wife of a Convict Anne Archibald.

And Anne has plenty to say about how Blair has RUINED her chances of being a Girls, Inc. girl, by publicly making out with Chuck.  Apparently, the “modern-thinking” Anne believes that women are a reflection of the men they are with.  And I agree.  Anne Archibald is definitely a reflection of Nate’s Convict Dad! 

Before stalking off in a dramatic Botox-infused huff, Anne tells Blair to tell Serena that she’s not Girls, Inc. material either.  (Yeah, way to be professional Anne!  Have one candidate reject another candidate for you, at a SAINTS AND SINNERS PARTY!) 

Now, of course, Blair assumes that Serena exposed her and Chuck, so that she would have a leg up on Blair in being the next Girls, Inc. girl.  And Blair is PISSED!  In fact, she is SO PISSED that she may very well throw Serena in that fountain again . . .

Meanwhile, Chuck’s P.R. Gal, K.C., surprisingly, is THRILLED with how well the public has responded to Chuck’s recent dalliance with Blair.  She claims it provides a good contrast to the SUPER HEDONIST persona Chuck exhibited during the party, by giving him heart.  “Maybe we can have everything,” says Chuck.

“I can’t,” pouts Blair.

Outside the party, Chuck tells Blair that he wants to build a future with her.  Blair wistfully replies that, for now, she needs to follow her heart.  “I have to be Blair, before I can be Chuck Bass’ girlfriend,” she insists.

Given all that these two have been through in the past few weeks, the above exchange was incredibly sad, and more than a bit depressing.  And yet, the conlusion of the scene leaves us with hope for this star-crossed couple. 

“I love you,” says Chuck.

“I love you too,” says Blair.  “I don’t expect you to wait.”

“When two people are meant to be together, they eventually find their way back,” answers Chuck.

“Do you really believe that?”  Blair asks.

“I do,” answers Chuck.

“Me too,” says Blair, smiling sadly, as she chastely touches her fingers to his lips, before exiting stage left.

You know what?  I think these two are going to be OK!

But you know who might NOT be OK?

Serena’s Up Sh*t’s Creek, without a Paddle

Our girl Serena is having a VERY BAD NIGHT.  First she got reamed out by Blair.  Then she got dumped by BOTH Nate and Dan, who left the party together to have sex play video games.  To top it off, Psycho Stalker Juliet, unbeknownst to EVEN Jenny and Vanessa, roofied Serena’s mask, and carried the poor girl, (who promptly passed out) into a limo, which she rode back to her place. 

Did I mention Juliet TEXTED the Dean, as Serena ,to tell her that Serena had WITHDRAWN from Columbia.  Yeah . . . I said TEXTED.  Because, apparently, permanent exit from a prestigious Ivy League school is just a few cell phone button pushes away . . .

Ridiculousness of the whole “Drop Out by Text” Thing aside, I’m actually really worried about our girl, Serena.  Because that Juliet is clearly WAY more disturbed than any of us originally suspected . . .

Man, this show is getting good . .  .

XOXO

[www.juliekushner.com]

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