We’ve finally received the dreaded announcement that season 5 of Boardwalk Empire will be its last on HBO. If you’re looking at the glass half full, then your excited that there is at least another season. But honestly, it sucks to pull the plug on a show that has so much potential to develop many more seasons. If you know anything about the sordid history of Al Capone, you know that we’ve only seen a glimpse of what he was historically capable of, and we haven’t even begun to touch the legacy of Lucky Luciano. Ratings, however, may have had a lot to do with these sudden changes of events.
Nothing has been the same since they killed off Jimmy Darmody (Michael Pitt). In my opinion, they cut off a character that caused so much turmoil within all the key players that they should have strung him along for awhile before they finished him off. If they should have even killed him, to begin with. The thing with Jimmy’s inevitable death is that the character is fictional. Although the majority of these gangsters were in involved in a violent world, most of them lived well past prohibition. Making Darmody the only character that was disposable.
So far, no one could go against Lucky Luciano, Al Capone and Nucky, the way Jimmy did. I would have liked to see what it would look like to see Jimmy up against Dunn Purnsley or Warren Knox. We can only imagine what Jimmy would have been like, with the sharp shooting Richard Harrow at his side, against Gyp Rossetti or Dean O’Banion.Would either of them had the guts to go against a fearless character such as Jimmy Darmody? It could have been amazing! They were working with gold and they terminated him to get that dramatic finale at the end of season 2. Darmody’s death had an incredible effect on the shows following and the plot began to lose purpose.
Even Al Capone and Lucky Luciano’s success stories were lagging in the past few seasons. With two volatile characters like these, HBO should have fast forwarded to their prime and allowed them to cause an immense amount of havoc. It would have kept the seasons following Darmody’s death, entertaining and insightful.
Not many noticed, but Meyer Lansky recruited Benny “Bugsy” Siegel- in season two he’s just a teenager. Bugsy Siegel was a mobster that became a legend in his own right. Instead of steering clear of any public attention to his business, Bugsy was a ham that rubbed shoulders with Hollywood celebrities and enjoyed the limelight. He was also an unapologetic killer. As one of the major players of the mobster times, it would have been best to develop Bugsy’s story, instead of dragging us through episode after episode with details of Eli’s son’s college life.
Could you imagine the amount of potential behind Bugsy Siegel in this show?
I don’t mean that the show should have been going only by historical facts. I understand that there’s a book this show is loosely based on and that the writers need creative freedom. I’m all for the creative angles on this show. They could make up whatever it is they feel like. What I’m saying is that the historical foundation of the lives of these people makes for a treasure trove of information that they could have been using in their creative endeavors. Honestly, the fact that they used real life gangsters in their show is what they hoped to bank on. They pointed out on many occasions the details of Al Capone’s life that were in fact real. There is a lot of appeal to series that are “based on a true story” and it may be due to our natural curiosity of who people really are.
There is a lot of appeal to series that are “based on a true story” and it may be due to our natural curiosity of who people really are. We want to know how it all happened. What motivated these characters to do as they did and what demons did they carry that no one knew about. There is a lot to work with here and they decided to make up mediocre plots and kill off one of the most influential characters in the show. Now, with the time closing in on the show, they’ll have no choice but to severe their ideas and give the world the abbreviated version of stories that were cut off before their time. And what’s sad is that they could have avoided that if they had listened to their audience.
Here are a few highlights and questions from the season finale, that we can explore during this wait for the final season:
- Chalky White’s daughter is dead. Wait till he realizes Nucky set the whole thing up, even if it’s a mistake, it will create an even bigger wedge between the two.
- Eli’s a new resident of the lovely city of Chicago. Al Capone is probably going to have him swamped with assassination errands, alongside his old fed buddy, Van Alden.
- Van Alden will have come around full circle, seeing Eli Thompson, who knows who he really is. Will Al Capone discover he used to be a fed?
- Dr. Narcisse has teamed up with the FBI to take down Marcus Garvey. Will he still be a major player in season 5?
- Nucky will have to deal with the pressures of the FBI hounding him for Eli’s whereabouts.
- Richard Harrow died, the last of Tommy Darmody’s true guardians. Will Harrow’s wife and Tommy have any place in season 5 or is this the last we will hear of them, since his grandmothers in jail?
- Mickey Doyle’s insurance policy turned up, right when Rothstein is struggling with his finances. Will Rothstein hire someone to take him out? He already has Nucky’s blessing in the matter. (Since Mickey is one of his employees)
- Gillian is facing some major charges for murder. Which means a lot of jail time and court dates. How will her character play into the next season?
- Lucky Luciano was barely even seen in season 4. How are they going to develop his mobster empire and will it include Meyer Lansky?
- Is Margaret still relevant? She helped Rothstein out to make some money, who cares? Will she be fazed out like Nucky’s last girlfriend?
- What’s Florida and Nucky’s new main squeeze looking like in Season 5? Is Nucky going to pitch his tent in his newfound love’s southern state?
- Masseria’s heroine empire seems to be getting out of control. When will he be taken out? (Using other mobsters cars as mules and not even saying anything are means to end the man.)
image source: screenshots of season 3 and season 4 of Boardwalk Empire on HBO
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