The Moth Chase

Elevating the Art of Procrastanalysis – Academics wasting time on pop culture

Archive for the ‘Boardwalk Empire’ Category

We all have to decide how much sin we can live with…

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“If you don’t believe in heaven, how can you believe in hell?”

— Van Alden

These last two episodes sure were something. I think we see many of the themes I’ve been discussing over the last several weeks coming to the fore again. I want to focus my concluding discussion on several related points: the idea of America, the limits of forgiveness in response to sin, and the relationship between these two topics. One thing that finally struck me was the extent to which something like the law was about to trump Rothstein’s massive empire. What’s interesting about it is it’s not the “rule of law” per se, but rather the enforcement of law in light of something like the public or the “American” valorization of baseball. The problem is not so much baseball, but rather the un-American idea of fixing this great American past-time. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Martin

December 7, 2010 at 10:26 pm

Boardwalk Empire…

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Dear all,

I will be doing a write-up of the final two episodes of Boardwalk Empire in the next several days–it is the end of the semester here, so things are a bit hectic right now!

Until soon,


Written by Martin

December 6, 2010 at 12:22 am

Posted in Boardwalk Empire

Nous devons aller à Paris…

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“I can’t recall who I was before…”

— Harrow

Interested in contemporary America? You need not watch more than this past week’s episode of Boardwalk Empire. (Right down to our contemporary fascination with and/or ambivalence towards Europe as exemplified in my choice of title, following Angela.) This episode brings together almost all of the themes I have been haphazardly exploring throughout the weeks. The episode has more layers than a mutant onion…let’s see what we can uncover. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Martin

November 28, 2010 at 8:34 pm

Love magnet…

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“How do you rest your spleen?”

— Eli Thompson

I feel like this was an important episode, although it did come off as a bit heavy-handed. While the image of Margaret’s dress (acquired by her newfound abilities to get what she needs) stained by blood is a powerful one, it also feels somewhat overdone (although no less compelling). What we see developed most explicitly in this episode is the theme of being a woman during this era. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Martin

November 22, 2010 at 10:15 am

It’s a new world…

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“I prefer to make my living honestly.”

— Rothstein


Hello friends,


Wow…what an awesome episode. Although it beat you over the head with the show’s theme, I thought this episode was almost flawless. I’ll discuss a few points which I think unify around one issue: America.

1. The overt imagery of a “new world” and “America” was just fantastic. The image of a “back-room” deal (actually out in the open), in front of an American flag (i.e. this is how American politics works) was impeccable and poignant. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Martin

November 14, 2010 at 9:30 pm

Posted in Boardwalk Empire

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Find a better place to live…

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“That’s horrible.”

— Margaret Schroeder

“Life can be that way.”

— Nucky Thompson

It is great to be back to BE. This week I’ll focus on two episodes in preparation for tonight’s episode; this seems to have worked out quite well because both of the episodes, as far as I can tell, deal with something like time and the consequences of its measurement. In the oldest episode (“Family Limitation”), we see the end result of “Nights in Ballygran,” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Martin

November 7, 2010 at 8:12 pm

Boardwalk Empire…

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…slightly delayed.

Been a crazy week for me also–I hope to have a BE post up soon, however!

– Martin

Written by Martin

October 31, 2010 at 9:24 pm

Posted in Boardwalk Empire