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Boardwalk Empire Episode 12 Season 3 Recap – “Margate Sands”

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Last night was the season finale of HBO’s Boardwalk Empire and it was a doozy. Last episode we saw Gyp Rosetti completely over run Atlantic City and attack Nucky Thompson at his home base, forcing him to seek refuge with Chalky White and his people. Rosetti took over the Artemis Club and made it his headquarters in Atlantic City, which didn’t sit well with Gillian and the other girls living there.

Rosetti’s guys treated the club like their personal brothel, and used and abused the girls as they pleased. Elsewhere Gyp Rosetti paid a visit to Chalky’s base and offered him $25,000 dollars to anyone who would turn in Nucky, but they all stayed loyal and didn’t turn him in. At the end of the episode Nucky’s brother Eli comes in from Chicago with Reinforcements from Al Capone and his people.

“Margate Sands” Recap: Calling this episode a bloodbath would be a gross understatement. “Margate Sands” opens with four men standing next to each other with their hands up and a few seconds later they all get gunned down in a hail of bullets. Atlantic City’s mayor is being hounded by reporters by the recent uptick in violence, but he assures them that everything is still firmly in his control.

More and more gangsters keep getting killed and the reporters keep getting pushy, but he once again reassures them that the violence is between gangsters and regular folks have nothing to worry about. The reporters continually ask about Nucky Thompson and if he’s even alive. The mayor tells the reporters, Nucky does not run Atlantic City , he does. The reporters laugh uncontrollably at the mayor after that statement.

The scene transitions to Nucky talking to Mickey Doyle  who’s sitting inside Melon’s distillery waiting for Nucky to come and see what he acquired. Mickey tells Nucky that once they get the operation up and running, he will become the biggest bootlegger in Atlantic City. But the conversation is cut short when Nucky sees Chalky and Al Capone’s men fighting each other outside, forcing him to intervene and break it up.

Al Capone and his men aren’t happy with working alongside Chalky and his team because they’re black, and threatens to pull his troops and go back up to Chicago. Nucky looks Capone’s square in the eyes and asks him “What’s a handshake with you worth anyway?” Back at the Artemis club Joe Masserai is having a meeting with Gyp and asks him how many men has he made available to him. Gyp tells Masserai that he gave him 43 men exactly, but he’s already lost 12 men to the war with Nucky.

This, along with the fact that Arnold Rothstein and Nucky are still alive, infuriates Masserai. Gyp reassures Joe that everything is going exactly as planned, telling him that he has Nucky’s hotel, he has the casino and he has Nucky’s warehouse. Masserai still doesn’t seem pleased and reminds Gyp of the promise that he made to him. Joe notices that a clock in the room has the wrong time, and he fixes it before slapping Gyp on the cheek lightly and telling him “Now you know what time it is.”

Gillian walks up to Tommy’s room with his lunch and asks the guards to allow her to go in and see him. They oblige. Tommy is sitting in a tepee erected in the middle of his room refusing to talk or even let Gillian anywhere near him. No matter how she tries he won’t give him. She eventually gives up trying and walks out of the room. Back at the lumberyard Eli is trying to fix a car and Nucky comes over to give him a hand.

They reminisce about the car Nucky sold Eli when he was younger and how it broke down and had to undergo extensive repairs. Nucky then asks his brother is his wife and kids are somewhere safe, and he assures him that they are. Eli asks his brother the same thing about his family, and Nucky deflects the question, instead telling Eli that they should have quit while they were still ahead. Eli tells Nucky they can talk about it after they win the war against Rosetti.  Nucky confides in Eli that he thinks their run in Atlantic City is over, but Eli disagrees. He tells Nucky that he’s very good at playing this game, and he will surely work out an angle.

Back at the distillery Mickey places a call to Arnold Rothstein and tells him he’s all alone out at sea. Arnold isn’t amused and tells Mickey to get straight to the point. Mickey then tells Arnold about the distillery in Philly and how big it is, and how he believes that Nucky will give it up in exchange for help against Rosetti. The scene then changes to Lucky sitting inside an interrogation room with the two officers that arrested him, and they’re questioning him about the drugs and where he got them. Lucky gives them a few wisecrack answers and they remind Lucky that they could easily make him disappear if they needed too. Lucky agrees to play ball and tell them where they can get 50 pounds of heroin.

Back at the Artemis club Gillian walks into Rosetti’s office where he’s filing his nails. Gillian engages Gyp in casual conversation and asks him if he misses his daughters at all, and he admits that he does.  Gillian then asks Gyp for permission to leave the club with Tommy, but he tells her that he doesn’t want her to go anywhere. Gyp starts calling Gillian “Red” and tells her that once the war is over, they’re going to show Atlantic City how things are supposed to be run. Gyp wants Gillian to be his queen and put her on a pedestal.

Gillian ask where he is, and he says, “Way down below, like a little bug crawling around on your toe”  She says, “I could crush you!” But this is exactly what Gyp wants to hear and it turns him on. Back at the lumberyard Arnold Rothstein calls Nucky and offers to help him with Rosseti in exchange for 99% ownership in the distillery. If Nucky agrees to the deal, Rothstein promises to convince Masserai to pull his support from Gyp. Nucky agrees, and after hanging up he turns to Eli and says, “Big Bait, Catches Big Rats!”

We finally get to see Margaret and she’s sitting in the home of a doctor who performs abortions. Margaret looks extremely nervous and asks the doctor’s wife what she should do, but the wife tells her that she never tells anyone what to do and that she should take her time making a decision this important. Margaret nervously asks if she should keep her dress on, and the woman tells her that she will go grab a gown. Looks like she’s going to abort Owen’s baby.

The scene changes to Lucky talking to Meyer, telling him that he worked out a deal with the cops and he won’t do any time. He tells Meyer that he will cover the loss they just took out of his own pocket, guaranteeing it. Meyer is visibly upset and listens quietly while Lucky talks before, before finally yelling “50 lbs, $100,000 Fuckin dollars!” Lucky and Meyer walk into their meeting with Masserai and they’re shocked to see the 50 pounds of heroin they just lost sitting on the table. Rothstein walks in shortly after and lucky realizes that he was setup by him and starts going mad, shouting threats and insults at him. The cops who arrested Lucky also walk in and tell him that if he doesn’t like the way he was treated, he can file a complaint with the station.

Meyer manages to calm his partner down by telling him to shut up or they will both be killed. Rothstein tells Masserai that he thought keeping Lucky close to him would civilize him, but there is only so much you can do. Rothstein then invites Masserai to become his partner in the heroin business, under a condition that we will find out soon enough. Al Capone and his men come back to the lumber yard and see Dunn peeing near their cars, and this makes them extremely angry. Dunn makes a move like he’s going to attack Capone, but he puts his gun in his face. Chalky calls him a coward, in so many words, for always reaching for his gun.

They put down the weapons and start to fight briefly before Nucky runs out again and tell them to break it up because he just got Masserai to pull his support by paying for it. Nucky knows this but Gyp doesn’t just yet, and he wants to plan how they’re going to kill him. The rest of the episode from this point on is absolutely nuts so I won’t spoil it for you, trust me you’ll wanna see it for your self. Check it out and tell us know what you thought about this season finale in the comments below.


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