Never has walking into an orphanage looked so cool. After the guitar riffing and hot stepping, Tommy and Polly have a sort of “moral off” with some nuns and for once the Shelbys come off better due to the fact they don’t beat up children. It should probably go down as a pyrrhic victory. “There is God and there are the Peaky Blinders” he warns as they withdraw their funding. Polly is in threatening mode too: “You listen for my footsteps”. There’s little chance of missing them, to be honest. It’s a surprising opening scene but perfectly shows the conflict at Tommy’s core. A man that has many bad habits.
Speaking of which, his sister doesn’t get much of an act bar being Gina’s taxi service. Ada feels very underused this series but this may be down to filming commitments elsewhere. Michael is indisposed by a meeting with “the devil himself”, Oswald Mosley. It’s as much to do with people politics than actual politics but we do learn that Mosley has connections to Jimmy McCavern and that he’s made the police investigation go away.
The Tommy versus Michael saga continues at an intriguing pace. Our main main literally treating him like the shit on his shoes but keeping him close all the same. Michael does face up to his nemesis again to say “By the time that baby draws its first breath we will be done”. Is it a friendship beyond repair?
With all this political manoeuvring it’s no surprise to see the return of Jessie Eden who is greeted by a tired, out of sorts Tommy. He’s literally a champagne socialist as he slurs his words and pops his cork. Jessie’s confused by his motives but then it’s not totally clear if Tommy knows what his own agenda is.
In all, episode three has a more sedate pace than the rest of the series so far. The grand scale and atmospherics are toned down. Perhaps the show needed it but initially, it feels slightly flat compared to what’s gone before. That said, there are two outstanding scenes that close it out..
Arthur seeks out the refuge where Linda has been hiding and the man she’s had the audacity to talk to. In a cleverly shot contrast, he punches the man repeatedly, beats him with a chair leg and knives him all while the camera stays still. It makes the violence even more uncomfortable. Arthur cries out “There is good in my heart but these hands belong to the Devil!” The second mention of the antichrist tonight. Make of that what you will.
Even better is Aberama Gold’s head to head with the Billy Boys. He’s after Jimmy McCavern for who he has a bullet. He shows up at Border Control and gives them a taste of their own medicine (a broken arm) but pouring boiling tar over his victim is adding insult to injury.
Never ones to make a quiet entrance, the Glaswegian gang are back for revenge of the revenge but they’re louder than Polly’s boots and Gold, with the help of Arthur, leaves them the present of a grenade. The glee on McCavern’s face at this declaration of war is glorious. It’s even better for us because we can watch it all unfold at home with a cup of tea and not be brutally maimed.
A LITTLE PEAK
– Tommy agrees to be Mosley’s deputy leader in his new ‘British Union Of Fascists’ party but we soon find out it’s as an informant. Or is it?
– “I’ve decided to balance my heart against my head” The moment Lizzie compromises her head and body for the sake of her lifestyle.
– Johnny Dogs is a dirty dog. Who knew?
Contributed by Michael Lee.
Peaky Blinders Continues Sunday at 9.00pm on BBC One.