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"What I love about Spring, how everything starts growing again when it's all been so grey..."
Meanwhile, the Thompsons were also wearing their "Sunday Best" with Nucky, Margaret and the kids actually attending dinner at Eli's even though the brothers are still very much estranged. That's what happens when you plot to have family killed. The opening sequence was brilliant. Eli creeping around the house, constantly looking over his shoulder only to reveal the red egg and set up the holiday episode. The brothers relationship isn't the only one strained, Nucky and Margaret are still drifting further apart and placing them in the family setting was really compelling. I remembered how much I liked watching them come together (and conflict), a far more interesting romance for the lead than that mistress. Oh yeah, and Emily had polio! Eli, on the other hand, has a loving marriage and lovely family, but would still like a little more respect from his big brother not to mention a better job but is still happy that Nuck came over for the holiday. No drinks before dinner though, he promised June. After dinner, the children start their egg hunt while the men retire to the garage and the women chat in the kitchen.
"It's too late. I'm sorry. But it's just too late."
Spending the day with June in her loving household, makes Margaret emotional and spill the beans about Billie to her sister-in-law. You can't blame June for changing the subject, they only just met, and at least there was a reassuring tap on the shoulder. In the garage, Eli can't gain an inch with Nuck and Shea Whigham is an absolute pleasure to watch. The exchange over the gun was a great two minutes, with the younger brother sensing his time is running out before Nuck tells him to quit being so melodramatic. Back inside, it's family talent show time and one of Eli's daughter's kicks things off with "Beautiful Dreamer" (which I know from Saved by the Bell) on some kind of string instrument before Nuck dazzles with his juggling (seriously, how talented is Steve Buscemi?) and Margaret her singing. There seems to be love in the air for the first time in a while between Mr. and Mrs. Enoch Thompson but when they return home, the flicker is quickly extinguished by the latter. It's just too late for them to reconcile but it does inspire Nuck to call up his brother and try to bury the hatchet. They're family. And you don't want an idiot like Mickey Doyle calling any shots, just look at Tabor Heights.
"You do what you gotta do with me but you're gonna to be in a war whether you like it or not."
Oddly enough, I found Gyp's thread to be perhaps the most interesting and Bobby Cannavale should be submitting "Sunday Best" for Emmy consideration. He knocks it out of the park, making me feel a great deal for the season's antagonist, especially during his Easter dinner. He primps his best suit for the meet with Masseria, already well aware he's in a bad spot before his right hand spells it out for us. We then see how Gyp was raised in a family of tough females being the only boy and taking a lot of shit. The look he flashed his soldier when he's about to leave was quite sad and a great way to to get us feeling for his character. The speech in Church was equally effective, especially since Cannavale is so compelling on-screen, and I definitely didn't think he'd rob the place. I was as surprised as the Priest, however, the coins were not enough to please Masseria, who's far more concerned with his man's out of control behavior. What do you do with a rabid dog? You put him down. Except when you've got an alliance of Irish and Jewish mobsters moving in on your territory in the foreseeable future. Gyp would rather speed things up and take out the competition - Nucky, Rothstein, Luciano and Lanksy - before they get too strong. I say this every week, but a war is coming.
Boardwalk Empire returns with Episode 8, "The Pony," next Sunday at 9 p.m. ET on HBO. Created by Terence Winter, it stars Steve Buscemi, Kelly Macdonald, Michael Shannon, Shea Whigham, Vincent Piazza and Michael Stuhlbarg.
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