BOARDWALK EMPIRE Season 4, “Erlkonig” GIFtastic Recap

Guys, this was a sad episode of Boardwalk Empire.  Spoilers ahead!

Eli’s son, Willie, finds himself in jail after fratboy douche Henry is found in the bathroom like a dog, utterly dead.   Who does he call?  Well, he doesn’t call his dad, that’s for sure.  When Nucky heads out to Pennsylvania to meet him, Willie admits he got the liquor from Mickey Doyle for a party, but doesn’t tell the whole truth about the situation.  Nucky promises to fix it, and they doctor his story.

Honestly, I find this kid highly annoying.  I can’t stand him.  He’s like Alma Pastor… who is dead for her attempts at trying to screw someone else’s life up.  The producers, I hope, will do that to Willie.   Anyway, when Nucky goes to meet with the Prosecutor, things start to unravel.  It turns out Henry’s father is a major contributor to the PA Republican Party and Nucky’s favors aren’t going to go very far right now.  Nucky also finds out that Henry was poisoned–or was given a lethal dose of whatever chemical Willie was pranking him with.  Talk about being hit with a double whammy.  Nucky goes back and asks Willie for the truth, asking him who slipped the dead kid the “Mickey”.  Willie admits he and his roomie Clayton did it, and by the time he says the kid’s name and Nucky asks who that is, you’ve figured out where it’s going.  They put everything on Clayton, and he is arrested for poisoning Henry.  Poor nerdy Clayton actually wanted to be somebody.

Willie, until you do right by me Clayton, everything you even think about is gonna crumble.

Gillian shows up this week, and she’s acting like a crackhead; manic and crazy as she tries to find Roy Phillips.  Gillian hopes to use her burgeoning relationship with Roy as a way to get her grandson Tommy back.  Roy seems to have disappeared without one single thought of her.  Later, when Gillian goes to meet the judge in her custody case in his quarters, she tries to use sex to bribe the judge.  He promptly tells her to get the hell out of his office.

Gillian then goes to see Dunn Purnsley in an all black barber shop.  I love how they look at her and then ignore her.  They’re not stupid.  If they say one thing to her, she could just run out and say they all raped her and it’s a wrap!

Anyway, she sees Dunn doing the “Boss” thing, getting his shoes shined, and approaches him affably enough.  God, Gillian.  What are we going to do with you?  He asks “Little Bo Peep” (Gillian)  what she wants, and she basically says that through her connections as a dancer, she found out he was selling some heroin.   When she goes to pay him, he tells her it’s not enough.  Of course, Gillian will not be stopped.  At least not while she has a working vagina between her legs… Or a mouth… Or whatever she uses.

After that situation with Alma Pastor, Purnsley is not about to take her up on her offer and, with the aid of her sob story, he gives her some dope, but not before warning her, “You best go easy now, Little Bo.  I like my lambs keep coming home.”  She later turns up at Tommy’s school hoping to take him home, but he can’t stand her.  Julia, his guardian, whisks him away with all the scorn for Gilly humanly possible, and Gillian is shown out of the school protesting all the while.  Poor Tommy.

Later, Gillian wakes up in bed and Roy walks in (no sexy times were had).  Roy discovers Gillian’s secrets and doesn’t seem to judge her at all.  He tells her he knows about sins and mistakes.  I think he might save her from herself.  She seems to be over the heroin or at least wanting to let it go.

Speaking of drug problems, Al is seriously enjoying his cocaine.  Thank God for his brother Frank keeping things together.  The last two Boardwalk Empire episodes, I’ve come to like Frank.  He’s a smooth operator.  Him and Al are both freaking crazy, but he’s a slow burn; not volatile like Al.  Van Alden is getting weary of Al, but Frank tells Van Alden to stick with him and not to worry about his brother Al too much.  Frank seems like a nice guy, right?

Van Alden gets conscripted into another Capone job in Cicero which goes terribly wrong.  Van Alden can barely control the first mob he’s in charge of leading to intimidate guys at a local factory to vote Republican.  The second time, the Capones show up and all hell breaks loose.

Al is seriously tripping off of something.  I’m not sure if it’s the first signs of syphilis or the cocaine he’s sucking down, but he even gets into a fight with his own brother before going off on Van Alden and the very large number of now pissed off workers who outnumber them at the factory.  In the ensuing melee, Van Alden sees an opportunity to kill Al Capone.  Frank sees this and goes to shoot Van Alden, but is shot instead.  Thing is, it wasn’t Van Alden.  Turns out an Army of cops came and shot him before he could pop Van Alden.  They literally filled him up with lead.  Al knows NOTHING of this (he was crawling when Van Alden was going to shoot him from behind), so Van Alden survives to see another day.

Agent Knox is a serious snake in the grass.  He holds Eddie against his will in a dilapidated house and aside from being creepy, he starts to torture Eddie by beating him.  It is a physical and mental torture, as he proceeds to launch a psychological attack on him by bringing up his past.  Turns out Eddie left Germany, his wife, and sons to come to the US with stolen money from his department store job and his mistress, a lingerie department employee from the same store.  Knox finally breaks Eddie when he tells him that his sons have all changed their names because they are ashamed of his thieving and betrayal.  He also adds the threat of deportation to the mix.

Eddie tells Knox that he gave money to Ralph Capone because that is what Nucky told him to do.  Knox seems pretty happy with this and they let him go.  I feel bad for Eddie because now he’s made a deal with the devil to stay here and not be deported back to Germany.

Alas, it was more than he could handle.  The episode ends as Eddie is seen writing a note, organizing some clothing and socks (earlier in the episode when he finally returns, Nucky scolded him for not telling him where he was, and then shows him his mismatched socks, telling him that is something he never wants to worry about again), fixes his tie in the mirror and then quite resolutely jumps out of the window.  It is a heartbreaking episode on all accounts.

The good—or at least the better alternatives—die young.