Deadwood “Suffer The Little Children”

The title for this episode, I suspect, refers mostly to the small orphaned girl Alma and Trixie have been looking after.  But that wasn’t what caught my eye.

Was it the vaccine for Smallpox coming into town, with word the Sioux were leaving under a treaty that would almost certainly be broken in the future?  No.

Was it Bullock and Alma finding a romantic spark between themselves as Bullock discovered Alma’s claim is quite valuable, convincing her to stay and him to get Swearengen’s word that Alma would be safe?  No.

Was it Trixie’s attempted suicide and her eventual return to Swearengen, who spent most of the episode angry at her absence?  No.

Was it the fact I realized that was Kristen Bell as that not-as-sweet-as-she-seems thief?  Sort of.

It certainly wasn’t watching Farnum’s greedy schemes come to naught as he advised killing Bullock and Alma, with Swearengen pointing out having a guy like Bullock in town actually makes a good cover for guys like them.

No, what caught my eye was Cy Tolliver.  The aforementioned thief who reminded me of Kristen Bell before I realized it was her and her brother (probably) were looking to rob either Tolliver or Swearengen or both.  She settles for Tolliver’s place, but he’s suspicious of her from the start, moreso than his business partner Joanie.  And when she gets caught brazenly going through Joanie’s things, well, it gets ugly.  Real ugly.  Ugly as in both she and her brother being beaten in the street in front of scores of witnesses, including Sol, and then taken inside where Cy berates them in the most biblical manner possible, questioning the young man’s manhood for taking orders from a woman, killing him, then forcing Joanie to kill her.

See, we’ve seen Swearengen can be dangerous, and there should have been no doubt Cy was also dangerous, but the rage was something else.

Afterwards, he offers Joanie the money to start her own place, explaining he only got that way for show to make sure no one else tried to rob them.  That doesn’t wash.  There weren’t exactly other witnesses in that backroom that left alive.

Maybe law and order can’t come fast enough for this town.

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