Was This The Most Twisted Plotline of 2012?
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Was This The Most Twisted Plotline of 2012?

By Dustin Rowles | TV Reviews | November 1, 2012 | Comments ()


It's been an outstanding year of television drama. Hell, it's been an outstanding few years, thanks to AMC, HBO, FX, and Showtime, and while I don't want to run down any of the plot lines competing for most twisted because I don't want to spoil a multitude of shows, I must nevertheless give the nod to "Boardwalk Empire," a drama that Sarah gave props to last week for out-crazying Homeland. It's not the best drama of the bunch, and it often creaks, but after last Sunday's episode, it certainly holds the title for the most messed up storyline, one of the more unsettling, twisted, and perverse subplots I've ever encountered. If you haven't caught up, read no further. However, if you're not watching Boardwalk Empire and have a kink for the perverse, this storyline -- a minor one in the overall landscape of the show -- might be the impetus you need to check it out.

The storyline concerns Gillian (Gretchen Mol), the ower and madame of an Atlantic City brothel. Last season, Gillian lost her son, with whom she had a very sexually charged relationship. Gillian gave birth to her son at a young age, and by the time he'd become an adult, they could've easily been mistaken for a couple. He was doting and protective; she was overly affectionate and flirty. In fact, at one point, Gillian and her he slept together after she'd had too much to drink, although the incident -- which colored the rest of their relationship -- was never spoken of again.

Anyway, her son died under mysterious circumstances, and because there was no body recovered, Gillian had held out hope that her son was still alive, although everyone on the show knew exactly what had happened. After several months, however, she realized that she needed to come to terms with his death.

This is where it gets particularly twisted:

In order to gain some closure, Gillian went out and found a young man who looked like her son's more muscly doppelgänger. Last week, they began their affair. This week, she brought him back to the brothel, and over the course of Easter Day, the two had a torrid fling. She basically f*cked him senseless, also insisting upon calling her lover by her son's name.


But that's not where the dysfunction ends. If having sex with someone that looked like your son wasn't twisted enough, at the end of the day, Gillian gave her new lover a nice, long and relaxing bath, pumped him full of heroin, and then drowned him, not because he was a bad person, but because it would finally give her the closure she needed to get over her son's death.


Then that psychotic bitch smoked a cigarette and had a nice long cry.


Your move, "Game of Thrones."

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • Buck Forty

    Why did I read this? I haven't watched it yet.
    Stupid, stupid, stupid.

  • Ariana

    Am I the only one who thinks she didn't pick this guy up with the intention of killing him? I think she was honestly trying to replace Jimmy so she didn't have to be lonely, then realized it wouldn't work, then had to end it to receive closure. I don't think she had his death mapped out in her head from the beginning.

  • junierizzle

    Crazy, sure. But overall this season has blown. No plan whatsoever after they killed Jimmy.

  • lowercase_ryan

    I keep forgetting to mention this but is anyone else loving Dunn Purnsley played by Erik LaRay Harvey?? Dude can steal a scene from anyone. I have no idea who he is but holy shitballs is he amazing on BE.

  • DarthCorleone

    Yes, the Gillian stuff was jaw-droppingly crazy, but I'd also add that overall I thought this episode was one of the absolute best yet for the show. Nucky, Margaret, Eli, Richard...so much good character stuff in this one, and I loved they way they juxtaposed all of it with the Easter observation.

  • KM

    "Gillian and her he slept together after she’d had too much to drink, although the incident" what is that supposed to say? Did they or not?

  • Gillian may have killed the Jimmy clone for closure but she also needed a body. Otherwise, legally she might have to wait seven years for a certificate of death in absentia. Financially she needs her grandson to inherit immediately.

  • I take it you haven't seen last night's AHS.

  • Mrcreosote

    Did she only sleep with her son once? Because I was under the impression that this was something that happened multiple times, although infrequently.
    Oh, and I'd just like to add, ewwwwwwwwww.

  • L.O.V.E.

    It was my impression that it happened for the first time when he was at Princeton. He then immediately joined the Army and got shipped to Europe. I don't think it happened again when he got back. It is possible the time at Princeton wasn't the first, though. After all, she was kissing his pecker when he was a baby.

  • blorft

    I definitely interpreted the wiener kissing as just one element in a lifetime sexual abuse toward Jimmy. Since Gillian was groomed, raped, and impregnated by Respected Community Leaders at 13, and thus a victim of abuse herself, it doesn't seem that far-fetched. Also, Jimmy didn't act like he was entirely surprised, even though he clearly didn't want it.

    God that storyline is depressing.

  • bleujayone

    No, it will become unbelievably fucked up when the real James turns up alive and well in a while.

  • ed newman

    Only if there is a crossover episode with The Walking Dead

  • AngelenoEwok

    He looked fairly definitively dead to me.

  • bleujayone

    Since when has death EVER been a reason for someone never to return? How many times has it been done? Someone is crushed, drowned, poisoned, blown up, shot down and many other ways that people in the really real world don't come back from. And yet in the world of fiction, it is often looked at as a mild inconvenience.

    I didn't say it was good writing. Only that it happens. A lot.

  • lowercase_ryan

    But the added screentime for Richard Harrow makes up for any creepiness.

  • KV

    You know who else needs longer screentime...Chalky White.

  • lowercase_ryan

    I'll second this.

  • John G.

    "Let go of him now"
    "or what?"
    "I'll kill you."

  • lowercase_ryan


  • lowercase_ryan

    I need to point out, it wasn't just closure she was after. The house/brothel was in Jimmy's name. Only if he dies does it pass to her. She needed a body for a death certificate.

  • lowercase_ryan

    ok, many others pointed this out already. That's what I get for not reading.

  • AngelenoEwok

    Could be worse. You could have pulled a me and taken 2+ paragraphs to say "DAT ASS."

  • lowercase_ryan

    best "dat ass" I've read in ages.

  • AngelenoEwok

    I just IMDB'ed the hell out of Billy Magnussen, just so I could come here to say, "I'm sorry to see Billy Magnussen go." He's more attractive than Michael Pitt but as soooooon as they got to that cray cray bathtub and we saw his fantastic behind* I knew it was all over.

    *Seriously, if he and Oona Chaplin ever take advantage of that, "Once you've been on one HBO show you can be on them all" thing, and have a love scene together? I think my caboose-loving self might have a stroke**.

    **This comment is a perfect example of why I vote to stick with Disqus.

  • Fredo

    The revelation that Gillian and Jimmy knocked Oedipal boots was one of those "What in the holy motherfuck is this shit??!" moments. You really didn't believe it. Then, you thought back to the first episodes and it made their weird relationship have some sense -- after all, this is why they felt more like exes than mommy and son.

  • ed newman

    They foreshadowed the hell out that plot point. It wasn't a shock to me other than the disbelief that they would confirm it on screen. Still, my stomach turned 100 times that day.

  • Wednesday

    Gillian was a little more pragmatic than that. It wasn't emotional closure she was after. It was financial. Jimmy was the owner of her home, and without Jimmy being declared dead, she couldn't get a loan to keep her business going.

  • My thought was that she was using this poor guy's body to make people believe it was Jimmy, but I don't think anyone other than those whores will believe that. It seems a bit of overkill as well, since she could just have him declared legally dead, as the old lawyer guy suggested at the beginning of the season.

  • DWinnifred

    Get your facts straight, first of all it was Easter, not Thanksgiving. Second, I believe her primary motive was to have a body to prove that Jimmy was dead. Then she could get possession of the house to get that loan to fix the place up. If it alleviated any closure issues for her, it was secondary. When she first picked him up in the street, it might have been lust on first sight, but I think this plot of hers came to her as an afterthought.

  • not-trying-to-be-a-jerk

    Not to be "that guy" but I'm pretty sure it was Easter weekend because they were hunting for eggs at Eli's. Also, she "needed" to have her son's dead body because with him alive she had no claim to the house as it was in his name....

  • pajiba

    Yes. Easter. My bad. And yes, while she "needed" to have her son's dead body, she didn't "need" to fuck him, call him her son's name, and then grieve for her son after the lover died. Also, she certainly didn't need to smoke the cigarette.

  • Wednesday

    But she did have to lull the Jimmy look-a-like into a pretty relaxed state in order to kill him without a struggle.

    It was one helluva coldblooded way to deal with her grief and her practical needs at the same time. Especially the moment when she put Jimmy's dog tags on the corpse. Wow.

  • ed newman

    I thought it had been established by Uncle Junior that she could just have him declared dead. Did I imagine that?

  • AngelenoEwok

    My impression is that it can be a lengthy and complex legal process to get a court to declare death in absentia. Not to mention, we've seen Gillian sign checks as Jimmy this season, which is probably illegal enough to cause her some difficulty.

  • John G.

    she needed the body, but more than that she needed to see him die, and she needed to fuck him, for psychological closure, since she's nuts.

  • $27019454

    Maybe he was just too hot to resist. Ever think of that, Mr. Judgey McMoral?

  • John G.

    his abs were pretty epic

  • AngelenoEwok

    So wait. It would have been somehow nicer had she just clubbed the dude in a dark alley without smoking?

  • Sean

    At least he had lot of sex before being murdered by the creepy but hot woman.

  • AngelenoEwok

    Exactly. I'm sure several folks in the show's high body count would have appreciated a little romancing first.

  • Sean

    Wouldn't you?

  • AngelenoEwok

    You speak the truth, NTTBAJ.

  • space_oddity

    I watched up to the end of the second season and decided to give up. It just wasn't doing it for me. Too many episodes where I'd sort of check out because it was, in fact, kind of boring. But maybe I should catch up?

  • Frank

    Careful what you wish for. The end of this season of Game of Thrones is going to wreck you.

  • Careful folks, the shock cannot be spoiled for those who don't know.

  • There's a good chance that scene won't happen until season 4, depending on how they're splitting things. It will be sad. So very sad.

  • Ozioma

    No, it's definitely happening next season. Episode 9, 'Ours is The Fury.'

  • Thanks for the info, I don't read many spoiler-ish things online. I will have my tissues handy!

  • Ian Fay

    Srsly. "TRW" will make the Internet explode.

  • Sean

    Ha, think of the end of the season after THAT. TRW is going to break a lot of hearts however.

  • athena23

    AND I SO CAN'T WAIT!!!!!

  • Fuckin'. Hell.

  • LordTomHulce

    Holy shit! I watched the end of last season and haven't watched this season. Primarily because I remember thinking after the Season 2 finale "Well, that's it, this show couldn't possibly do anything weirder than that." Season 3 viewing begins for me tomorrow.

  • That plot is so seriously unbelievably fucked up. I don't think even Game of Thrones could possibly top it.

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