Set amongst the Atlantic City boardwalk, HBO's Boardwalk Empire follows the tangled underworld of the most notorious bootleggers and gangsters of the 1920's, Al Capone, Arnold Rothstein, and of course, Nucky Thompson.
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Throughout the tumultuous series, the Boardwalk Body Count attempts to keep track of those who've been knocked off and the cutthroat gangster's with blood on their hands.
Red Carnations, as constantly worn by Nucky Thompson (like here in the Pilot) mean ‘Alas! my poor heart!’, which alludes directly to his (also) constant manpain.
Dean O’Banion, in season three episode one resolution, brings a bouquet of flowers made up of ferns, gladiolus and baby’s breath to a meeting with Al Capone and Johnny Torrio. Gladiolus, the flower of gladiators, can also mean sincerity, strength of character, or severed ties. Because deaf kid jokes don’t make friends, Dean. Baby’s Breath is often used to symbolize festivity, but interestingly (and fittingly) all parts of the plant are poisonous when dried. The ferns O’Banion uses as filler are symbols of protection and safety, (which he certainly needs later on in the episode).
And now, for some Harrowfeels, we have Richard giving Julia white lilies, which mean sweetness, as well as beauty, hope and life. Because that scene couldn’t possibly make me any happier.
also i should’ve said this when the first episode aired but i was just in so much shock and so uncomfortable about it jesus
my friend who i mentioned earlier, who is the the MOST offensive person in the world, and another friend of mine, had come over to watch the premiere with gramma and i
and you know the dunn scene in 4.01, with that nasty white couple.. yea. well that really pissed both of them off. kid literally said “this is offensive.” like, you cannot bother these two. they don’t care. but tw managed to do it anyway.
racially motivated rape of a regular side character is not edgy and different, it’s just fucking gross. especially to two young black boys who are in your target age demographic.
so good job tw, good job. you did it. you made an impression.
It’s historically accurate though. It is gross and controversial, but I don’t think the writers are above picking and choosing which of the 1920s US non-niceties the viewers would like to see.
Just because they’re taking creative license with history by creating a non-plausible fairly wealthy, fairly well-recieved African-American in a predominately white community, like Chalky, doesn’t mean they’re going to create an alternate universe where Chalky and Dunn don’t experience the absolutely vile side of being an African American in the 1920s US.
I agree its gross, but it was necessary, especially when establishing Narcisse and part of the New Negro Movement. He’s African American vying for the betterment of the “Libyan” and the downfall of the “lesser Africans” from within its own community (a character who reflects the still-lingering racial divide within the African-American community today). The situation and Narcisse’s involvement is important to this time period, especially if the writers are going to continue on with Hoover’s involvement in the story.
Hoover wasn’t above using people against causes in their favors, as I discussed in my post where I mentioned his homosexual spy ring. Later on in his career, he would reduce jail time or even free African-American convicts if they agreed to infiltrate the Black Panthers and introduce drugs, violence, and sexual disease in order to discredit an otherwise fairly peaceful Civil Rights movement among white citizens glued to the blooming enterprise of the 24-hour news cycle. Here’s a link to an article about Fred Hampton, an African American man assassinated and demonized so that white men could get away with an awful crime (orchestrated by none other than Hoover).
We’re seeing the beginnings of Hoover’s attempt to destroy the African-American community within and without before he even thinks of doing it, by giving us the “rape” scene with Dunn and the Pastors, which leads us to Narcisse, which lead to the finale, which leads to a probable season five plot line.
TL;DR: It’s gross and awful, but that’s life in the 1920’s accurately depicted and it’s probably important to the story.
I honestly don’t get the sentiment that Richard’s heaven should have had Jimmy and Angela.
the whole point was that Richard wasn’t looking behind him anymore; he was looking towards the future.
Richard made his peace with the loss of those two already.
also, it was meant to give you the slight hope that he might be alive still. if they were there, you’d already know and that moment of him with his mask off would have been ruined.