September 23, 2010

Boardwalk Empire: The Contradiction of Nucky Thompson

Filed under: Gender,Media — Tags: , — Rachel @ 2:41 pm

Last Sunday, the new series Boardwalk Empire premiered on HBO.  While watching previews, I wondered if the show would address the fact that a large force behind prohibition was the Women’s Temperance movement.  I was surprised and happy to see that it was addressed in the first five minutes of the first episode.  Nucky Thompson (played by Steve Buscemi) is shown speaking at a meeting for Women’s Temperance, about how evil alcohol is, and how great it is that women no longer have to fear their drunk husbands.  If you saw the commercials, it’s obvious Nucky controls the Atlantic City Boardwalk, and part of that role is keeping the booze flowing freely during prohibition.  The upside for him is that he now gets to charge astronomical prices for a simple cocktail.