Nucky Thompson (Steve Buscemi) started out Season 3 of “Boardwalk Empire” in full gangster mode, but recent episodes have featured a weakened, threatened Thompson in hiding. Atlantic City’s head honcho has almost completely run out of company, true to Jimmy Darmody’s dying prophecy. Almost.
Thompson remains staunchly determined to win back his town. With the help of Al Capone, Chalky White, and his brother Eli, Nucky is set to do battle with Gyp Rosetti — and Sunday’s episode is guaranteed to be a bloodbath. But there are quite a few remaining loose ends left to tie, and some big questions for the season finale:
1. Where is Margaret?
Nucky knows about her affair with Owen (Charlie Cox), but audiences didn’t see him confront Margaret (Kelly Macdonald) about it (nor did we see her subsequent departure with the children). Where is she? How will she handle her pregnancy now that Owen is dead? And will she ever be able to reconcile with Nucky, or will her feminist inclinations finally launch Margaret into autonomous territory?
2. Will Gyp Rosetti meet his maker?
It seems unlikely Rosetti will last into another season of “Boardwalk Empire.” Bobby Cannavale plays the part of the unhinged, insecure maniac wonderfully — but the character is so bonkers, he’s almost a joke. Our money is on him getting taken out in a horrifyingly awesome fashion. And we won’t miss him, either.
3. For that matter, who else will get killed?
BE isn’t shy about knocking off characters — even central ones, especially in season finales. Al Capone put it succinctly at the end of last week’s episode: “You and me sit down… and we talk about who dies.” So who? As we’ve mentioned before, history tells us that a few characters (Luciano, Masseria, and Capone himself) have years left in them, so others are fair game.
4. What’s happening with Van Alden?
After playing the part of nutcase so skillfully in the first two seasons, Van Alden (Michael Shannon) is still present in the “Boardwalk” landscape — but his special brand of cray-cray has been eclipsed by Rosetti, and partly due to his move to Chicago. We’ve got a feeling the writers didn’t keep him in play, simmering on the side burner for nothing. A nuclear meltdown (one even more dramatic than his workplace conniption) might be happening in Chicago at season’s end.
5. Will Richard Harrow take on Gillian?
Gillian (Gretchen Mol) has become the embodiment of evil this season, contrasted perfectly alongside Richard Harrow’s (Jack Huston) quiet, pained, and caring example. But Gillian also seems to have underestimated Harrow’s badass-ery (remember, this is a guy who’s killed 63 people). His respect for Jimmy, his affection for Angela and his love for their son might mean Gillian finally bit off more cruelty than she can actually chew when she kicked Harrow out last week.
What do you think of our predictions? Are there any other major answers you’d like to get from the Season 3 finale of “Boardwalk Empire”? Let us know in the comments — and be sure to tune into the season finale on Sunday at 9pm EST.