The Army Needs You
Kevin and his partner whose name I can never remember are chasing the mickey-slipper from last week (Doman) through the streets. They get him to talk by beating the crap out of him, peeing on him, then finally dumping shit-water on him. Doman claims he was just doing his job, which is to recruit soldiers for the Union Army. Apparently by drugging them and holding them prisoner. His partner, “John Smith” (really? That’s the best alias he could come up with?) hired some new guy, “a big Bavarian”. The Bavarian didn’t like it when the boys woke up and started struggling, so he beat them to death. He claims today is the day the boys are to be turned over to the army, but he doesn’t know where it is supposed to happen. The only other place he met with Smith was some office building. Paperwork in the office leads to a man who might be Smith’s contact with Army.
Kevin goes off to investigate even though he really needs to be getting ready for Robert’s wedding, seeing as he’s the best man. Smith’s contact, an Army recruiter, does not seem interested in Kevin’s opinion on the appropriateness of drugging young boys to force them to fight. He calls Kevin a “shitbird” which may or may not be a racial slur. It’s hard to tell, what with all the racial slurs flying around this show. The recruiter’s office guy hands Kevin a tip on his way out, resulting in Kevin finding where the boys are being kept prisoner.
Kevin prepares to enter the room with only brass knuckles, even though he carries two guns and probably a knife. Kevin knocks the guard out, and begins freeing the boys when McGrath – our “John Smith”, who also happens to be the father of one dead and one missing boy – walks in. Father of the Year, this one. He refers to his own sons as lazy shits and his wife as a worthless drunk. He’s one to talk? Kevin offers him the option of joining the Army himself or being shot in the face. Guess which one he picks?
Kramer vs. Kramer
Kevin and his wife are planning a nice date night for after the wedding, and are actually managing to pleasantly flirt with each other. AnnieRhoda expresses her displeasure at this by forcefully chopping some vegetables. Who let her have a knife anyway?
Ellen ends up taking AnnieRhoda to the wedding with her, because Kevin doesn’t show up in time. She repays the kindness by stealing some jewelry from Elizabeth, who totally deserves it so I don’t really care. When Kevin eventually gets home after saving all those boys and catching the bad guy, Ellen bitches him out for not being there for her. And then proceeds to bring up every.single.time. he hasn’t been there for her in the past, including enlisting in the Army. He reminds her he did that to help them be seen as true Americans and not just Irish immigrants, so that Maggie could have a better life. She reminds him that the house is empty, which, excuse me but whose fault is that? Kevin leaves and heads straight to Eva’s bar, where you can drink whiskey and prostitutes will have sex with you without nagging you to death first, and where Donovan reminds him that if he wants a life beyond being a copper, he can’t be breaking commitments to rich, important people. There was a lot of reminding in this storyline.
Kramer vs. Kramer Part Deux
On the morning of her wedding, Elizabeth tells her staff she is volunteering for the Women’s Christian Association when she is really off to see Kennedy in jail. In case I haven’t made it obvious in my last two recaps, I hate her face. When Kevin doesn’t arrive in time for the wedding, Robert recruits his valet to be his best man. I was really hoping he would ask Matthew, but I guess he’s not that liberal. The presider asks if anyone knows why these two should not be married, and I can think of at least a dozen, but no one can see the Hermione hand raise I’m doing and the wedding proceeds.
After the ceremony, Elizabeth goes upstairs to take lots of opium. In a scene I’ve been waiting impatiently to see, she confesses to Robert about her involvement in the conspiracy to burn the city. Robert is way pissed and also hurt because he actually does love her. He reminds her that he had his own father exiled for his involvement in the conspiracy and walks out of the room. I want to be all, “Yeah, bitch! That’s what you deserve”, but she’s so weepy and pathetic and high that I find myself feeling sorry for her instead. Damn this show!
Robert ends up spending his wedding night with one of Eva’s ladies. Kevin interrupts them, sends the lady off, and offers the lamest apology ever for not being at the wedding. Speaking of wives fucking up big time, Robert asks Kevin if he’s forgiven Ellen. His only answer is that he’s trying to honor his commitment. Then he climbs into bed with Robert and that noise you hear is the furious tapping of keyboards as fanfiction stories are written.
The Freemans are moving back into their old place in Five Points. Sara says she’s ready to make some new memories, but has a flashback of the riots. Sara seems resistant to going to the wedding. Matthew tells her that Major Morehouse has agreed to help them find Sara’s mother, who I didn’t even realize was missing, so they need to show him they appreciate his friendship.
After the wedding, they return home to have some of the fancy wine Eva gave them as a welcome back gift, but Sara can’t stop picturing the night of the riots. Probably because the lamppost her brothers were hung from is right outside their window. She takes an ax outside and tries chopping it down which doesn’t work because the pole is metal. The scene quickly goes from slightly comical to really moving as several neighborhood men help her tear it down.
Maguire is full of ambition – collecting twice as much as usual from the customers and demanding to meet the big boss. He wants more responsibility than just being an errand boy. The boss man tells him he’ll need to kill a copper to prove his loyalty. Maguire is not only willing but eager, saying he has just the fella in mind. I assume he means Kevin, but it’s not Kevin that he eventually stabs to death, it’s some other guy I don’t remember, but the internet informs me is Phinbar Byrnes. Honestly, I spent this entire storyline thinking how much hotter Maguire was with longer hair and how awesome he would look with an eyepatch over that wonky eye.
Next week on Copper
I don’t know because my daughter woke up right at the end of the episode, and then my DVR cut off before the previews for next week.
Cathy Elmore is a writer for Sweatpants & Coffee. She also writes for Gridiron Girl when she isn’t chasing after her baby girl.