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Boardwalk Empire 4th Trailer The Latest Trailer For The New HBO Television Series

Monday, September 20, 2010

Terence Winters's epic new HBO series Boardwalk Empire launched in the channel's premier Sunday 9pm slot last night, thus avoiding weekly conflict with rival period drama Mad Men, created by Winters's fellow alumnus of The Sopranos writers' room, Matthew Weiner. And HBO certainly pushed the boat out in anticipation, running Casino and Raging Bull all day before Boardwalk aired, celebrating the pilot's director, Martin Scorsese, here making his first major foray into television.

We have some idea what to expect: prohibition, Jazz Age excess fuelled by bootleg liquor and economic good times, the violent emergence of a criminal power structure that will dominate the mid-century, and a Sin City ablaze with civic corruption, murder, malfeasance, gambling and booze-soaked debauchery.Through most of the 20th century, Atlantic City was controlled by a powerful partnership of local politicians and racketeers. Funded by payoffs from gambling rooms, bars, and brothels, this corrupt alliance reached full bloom during the reign of Enoch “Nucky” Johnson the second of three bosses to head the Republican machine that dominated city politics and society.

There are several other differences between “Boardwalk Empire” and “The Sopranos,” not the least of which is that the latter was a cultural phenomenon and television landmark, whereas the former has yet to air an episode, although that will happen the evening of Sept. 19.But the common pinstriped thread between the two involves HBO and the gangster genre, which is enough to ratchet up anticipation for “Boardwalk Empire” and stir hopes that the new series will demand the kind of mandatory viewing its kneecap-smashing predecessor enjoyed. The name of horror film "Jeepers Creepers" is back in second place on the charts while brand new American TV series "Boardwalk Empire" is new in third place.

This is a surprisingly under-filmed period in American history (Days of Heaven, The Cotton Club and Horton Foote's 1918 come to mind), and Scorsese takes care to maintain a certain degree of sci-fi foreignness in his period recreation. His approach is less sophisticated than Mad Men, which functions on a less-is-more dogma in production design, against Boardwalk's overwhelming 360-degree total-immersion principle, but it certainly gets the job done.

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