HBO announced today that they are bringing back Boardwalk Empire for a fifth season, on the heels of the show picking up five Emmy Awards.  The only heavyweight Emmy among the bunch went to Bobby Cannavale who played the rabid hair-trigger tempered Gyp Rosetti.  The rest of the awards were for things like sound mixing, art direction, hair styling, and sound editing.

Nucky Thompson, portrayed with intelligence and wit by Steve Buscemi, is based on real life Atlantic City gangster Nucky Johnson.  The writers changed the last name so they could take a little poetic license for drama sake.  While the real Nucky never killed anyone or had anyone killed, HBO’s Nucky not only orders killings, but from time to time, does a few himself.

This is one of those compelling series that is worth binge watching if you’re just now becoming aware of it.  The cast is a small army of ever changing multi-layered characters.  Nucky is a bad guy, but he’s very generous to those he cares about, and he has a soft spot for down trodden women.  He has a hard spot for pretty women, and is never long without a female companion.

Richard Harrow is the closest thing to a hero in Boardwalk Empire.  Okay, so he’s killed a lot of people, many because he was paid to, but he’s still a nice guy.  He’s also very skilled in what he does, having been trained as a sniper in the army.  With half his face blown away, the half mask the army gave him gives him kind of a Phantom of the Opera air about him.  We know from previous seasons that he also has a kind heart.  He took care of a little boy in a brothel and then showed care and concern for his sister when he returned to the family farm.

This show has too many characters with too many different story lines to jump in without going back to the beginning of the series, but it’s well worth it.  Now that Nucky has at least another season to develop criminal alliances, love relationships, and settle old scores, it will be entertaining to see where the writers take us in the Boardwalk Empire season 5 season.