Boardwalk Empire

10 Best Episodes of Boardwalk Empire

Atlantic City at the dawn of Prohibition is a place where the rules don't apply. And the man who runs things -- legally and otherwise -- is the town's treasurer, Enoch "Nucky" Thompson, who is equal parts politician and gangster.

Written by Sophie and last updated on feb 04, 2023.

PS: The following content contains spoilers!

PPS: I will admit that parts of this page was written with the help of AI - it makes my work so much easier to not start from a blank page!

Boardwalk Empire - S2E2

#15 - Ourselves Alone (Season 2 - Episode 2)

Despite being publicly embarrassed by legal trouble, Nucky's biggest concern may be holding on to his private army in a battle for control of Atlantic City. Meanwhile, Jimmy pitches a business deal to Arnold Rothstein in New York, but may have more in common with Meyer Lansky and Lucky Luciano. Margaret draws on past experience to retrieve some valuable information, Chalky clashes with a fellow inmate, and an Irish nationalist comes to town looking for support.

The episode was rated 8.08 from 705 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S3E8

#14 - The Pony (Season 3 - Episode 8)


Gillian makes her peace with Jimmy's death. Van Alden attends a meeting with Capone and Torrio. Nucky makes an offer to Andrew Mellon. Margaret makes a stand on birth control. Nucky and Owen shop for a pony. Billie considers a future in film.

The episode was rated 8.13 from 686 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S1E12

#13 - A Return to Normalcy (Season 1 - Episode 12)

Nucky faces Election Day in Atlantic City and pulls out all the stops to keep power in Republican hands. Torrio brokers a discussion between Nucky and Rothstein to resolve their growing gang war, as well as Rothstein's looming federal indictment over the World Series. Both Jimmy and Eli voice their growing resentment towards Nucky, and find they have an ally in the Commodore. Van Alden seeks a sign on whether or not to leave Atlantic City, but receives unexpected news from Lucy. Margaret weighs new information about Nucky's first marriage and her uncertain future to make a final decision on her role in his life.

The episode was rated 8.13 from 661 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S3E10

#12 - A Man, a Plan... (Season 3 - Episode 10)


Nucky tries to keep Jess Smith quiet and neutralize Gyp's alliance with Joe Masseria. Margaret considers an alternate future. Van Alden's side business backfires. Gyp's shipment is short. Chalky sees an opportunity.

The episode was rated 8.15 from 670 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S5E6

#11 - Devil You Know (Season 5 - Episode 6)

Federal agents enlist the help of Eli and Van Alden to take down the Capone organization.

The episode was rated 8.16 from 916 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S4E5

#10 - Erlkönig (Season 4 - Episode 5)


Nucky heads to Philadelphia to deal with the fallout from Willie’s liquor fiasco. Eddie Kessler is detained by Agent Knox, who uses physical and psychological tactics to elicit information about Nucky’s organization. A desperate Gillian turns to an unexpected source to score a fix, and is rebuffed in her attempt to reunite with Tommy. In Cicero, Van Alden is recruited by the Capones to pay an election-day visit to local factory workers opposed to the Capones’ candidate of choice.

The episode was rated 8.17 from 965 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S4E10

#9 - White Horse Pike (Season 4 - Episode 10)

Tipped off by Sally Wheet, Nucky enlists Eli and Agent Knox to check out the extra cargo in Florida shipments. Margaret ponders a deal with Rothstein to improve her family’s living conditions. Capone grows suspicious of Torrio; Nucky faces a dilemma; Eli makes peace with Willie.

The episode was rated 8.20 from 932 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S5E7

#8 - Friendless Child (Season 5 - Episode 7)


Nucky tries to hold onto his assets in Atlantic City. Willie and Eli become involved in Nucky's war.

The episode was rated 8.21 from 939 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S2E10

#7 - Georgia Peaches (Season 2 - Episode 10)

Undercut by Nucky, who has a new source for alcohol, Jimmy and his partners look to cultivate a new revenue stream in Atlantic City. With the peak tourist season approaching, the Commodore’s crew faces a choice in dealing with the city’s striking workers; either negotiate or fight back. Fearing that sin has led to misfortune, Margaret approaches Father Brennan with an “act of devotion.” Nucky gets a new lawyer. Van Alden faces an uncertain future. Manny Horvitz takes exception to a debt payment.

The episode was rated 8.23 from 663 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S2E11

#6 - Under God's Power She Flourishes (Season 2 - Episode 11)


With Margaret pondering the consequences of sin, Nucky prepares her for a worst-case scenario as Esther Randolph plays out her trump cards. Jimmy revisits his college days with Angela and Gillian. Mickey Doyle chafes at sharing his liquor profits. Eli refuses to cop a plea. Nelson's past comes back to haunt him, tipping the scale in Nucky's favor.

The episode was rated 8.25 from 676 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S2E12

#5 - To the Lost (Season 2 - Episode 12)

Esther Randolph's case is weakened by the sudden death of one witness and the sudden marriage of another. Jimmy turns away from the influence of others, including his mother. Nucky, acting the family man to Margaret, faces a difficult, bottom-line business decision.

The episode was rated 8.46 from 693 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S5E8

#4 - Eldorado (Season 5 - Episode 8)


Nucky plans to relocate to Manhattan. Margaret impresses Nucky and a grain company stockholder.

The episode was rated 8.49 from 1006 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S4E12

#3 - Farewell Daddy Blues (Season 4 - Episode 12)

Eli braces for the worst as Agent Knox launches his plan to bring Nucky down. Capone and Torrio reach an agreement in Cicero. Chalky looks to settle scores. Richard steps forward to save Tommy, at Gillian's expense.

The episode was rated 8.51 from 986 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S3E12

#2 - Margate Sands (Season 3 - Episode 12)


A gang war erupts in Atlantic City, with Gyp and nine men of his own and 40 of Joe Masseria's against Nucky, Eli, Capone's Chicago crew, and Chalky's men. Gyp's holed up at Gillian's; Nucky at a lumber yard. It's a war of attrition, with Nucky having to keep Capone and Chalky's men from killing each other while he negotiates with Rothstein by phone. Rothstein runs his own game with Luciano, Lansky, and heroin, Margaret calls on an older couple, and Richard is out there somewhere focused on protecting Tommy.

The episode was rated 8.52 from 732 votes.

Boardwalk Empire - S3E11

#1 - Two Imposters (Season 3 - Episode 11)

Gyp makes his move in Atlantic City, forcing Nucky and Eddie to seek refuge with Chalky. With the Artemis Club overrun by Rosetti thugs, Gillian contemplates a business future that includes an unwelcome partner. Luciano makes a deal he’ll come to regret. Harrow loses his house privileges.

The episode was rated 8.52 from 721 votes.

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