Sunday Night Open Thread – Boardwalk Empire

I honestly do not recall the last time I was enticed to watch the premier of a pilot on television. It could have been The Soprano’s or possibly Alias. I don’t know. But what I do know is there were several shows I wish I had seen from the beginning and make me feel like I lost out on a bit of shared Americana as a result. Shows such as The West Wing, Battlestar Gallactica (reimagined) or Lost just to name a few.

In the case of Battlestar Gallactia I took the route of watching the entire series from beginning to end over the course of a three-month period just so I could catch up in time for the series finale. While I cherish those Frackin’ months more than you can imagine I would have preferred to experience the show week after week over it’s complete four seasons. It would have been much more entertaining to share thoughts about Baltar and Six or the toasters around the proverbial “water cooler” the next day rather than seeking out those who already saw the show. And it sure would beat the hell out of arguing about politics.

Well tonight I caught the premier of a pilot that may very well be worth watching, Boardwalk Empire. From the moment it was announced that Martin Scorsese would be directing a show about 1920 Atlantic City on the eve of prohibition and that Steve Buscemi was the star I couldn’t help but set a reminder. Now I don’t wish to spoil it for you but the show was quite good. Buschemi plays a character by the name of Enoch “Nucky” Thompson, a crooked politico who happens to be the Treasurer of Atlantic City and whose equally morally challenged brother Eli Thompson is the Sherriff.

As the show begins it is clear that Nucky is crooked but as things play out he crosses the line between average corrupt politician to genuine criminal. I will leave it at that at least for now but if this shows ends up being as good as it seems I think it just might become the Sunday night open thread.

Did you watch tonight? What did you think?

2 Responses to “Sunday Night Open Thread – Boardwalk Empire”

  1. Macswain says:

    I thought the opener was a bit heavy handed and overreaching. They beat us over the head with the notion that Nucky is supposed to be at heart a good guy (the lengthy overdone scene sympathizing with the preemie baby and the helping the pregnant lady) and that he’s transformed instantaneously by Jimmy Donovan’s little speech to him, but then how did he have the dudes already lined up and ready to beat a guy to death and dump him in the harbor. Those guys didn’t look like this was something new to them.

    In any even, most premieres suck and these kind of shows tend to get better as the characters are developed over time. I suspect this series will live up to the hype as the season goes on … can’t wait to see what they do with the guy who played “Omar” in The Wire.

  2. I didn’t read that he was a good guy with a heart of gold, just that he has a soft spot and that soft spot has something to do with parenthood. My guess is that this will play itself out in the relationship with the wife of the guy he sent on that “diving expedition.” Regarding the transformation scene with jimmy, I read that differently as well. Until that moment he was a crooked politician, certainly a criminal one but he was playing only with other crooked politicians like the mayor, sheriff, dog catcher, etc. He planned to import booze and extort local business people with it. When he agreed to supply booze to Luciano and Rothstein he began the crossover to gangster. Taking the money from Jimmy and Capone sealed the deal.

    Anyway, I enjoyed it. It did not compare to the BSG mini-series but it was good.

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