Boardwalk Empire Season 2 Finale – Good Bye, James Darmody
I have titled this post “Good Bye, James Darmody”, but there are so many other titles that come to mind. “The Marriage Of Margaret Thomson”, for example. But the last two episodes of the second season of Boardwalk Empire gave us so much of James, that two things were certain: 1. it was, indeed, the season of Jimmy, and his story became so complex and interesting, that it was inevitable that – 2. Jimmy had to die at the end of season 2.
And I believe this was a problem of Steve Buscemi as much as it was a problem of Enoch Thomson. Michael Pitt was the real star of the show until now, and for a more balanced season 3 – he had to stay out of the frame. And as much as I am sad about this (Boardwalk Empire will never be the same without him, the Son) – I must admit this two-episodes long goodbye was fantastic.
I thought about Breaking Bad, and the Walter-Jesse situation, but in many ways Jimmy’sdeath was more similar to the death of Gus than to the father-son conflict of the meth chefs. Perhaps Nucky was in some ways a father (or a father role) for Jimmy, but Nucky himself had no sons. He would never accept the idea of family, because that brings in complications.
No, Margaret does not believe this new “husband” title, and the closer they get legally, and physically (they are sharing a bed now) – the better Margaret understands the real deal. I think the breakfast scene, where Margaret asked Nucky where he was etc. – the morning after he had killed James – it felt she knew its inappropriate in his eyes that she even dares to ask him such questions, and that she did it as a part of a role she took on herself. The wife, the stupid wife, the one that doesn’t know, doesn’t want to know, but want it all to look like it should. Classic woman, or at least that’s the image she wants for herself. This Way it is easier to operate.
Was she honest when she gave Nucky the speech of ”I stole, I cheated”? I think yes, but maybe that talk with Ms. Randolph changed her mind. Maybe she understood you have to play it dirty or you don’t play at all. But not playing is no longer an option for her, and now she’s doing what she must do.
Is Nucky the winner of this season? I didn’t have much sympathy for him before, and for sure not now – after getting away from the trial in the dirtiest way possible, and after killing James – without even a proper good bye. No, James deserved a better death, and Nucky deserves at least some punishment, which I hope we will see in season 3.