“Tommy is slowly falling apart and it’s only episode two!”
(C) Tiger Aspect/Robert Viglasky
Episode two of the brilliant Peaky Blinders continues with more drama and violence. However, we finally see Tommy Shelby slowly losing his temper and mind as he figures out a way to protect his family and the streets of Birmingham under the spotlight of Chief Inspector Campbell and how he’s going to control his working relationship with notorious gang leader, Billy Kimber.
The episode opens with a violent outburst between the Shelby boys and the Lee family, a pack of travelling gypsies who are carrying out a deal with Tommy. The fight between them starts as one of the Lee family members uses slaughter words against the Shelby’s mother which causes them to take their razor-blade-sewn hats off and begin to cut the Lee family up with it with them. Meanwhile, whilst the boys are away the mice comes out to play. Chief Inspector Campbell gives the order to raid every home in Shelby’s town to find the missing guns and the members of the notorious gang, which is where he ends up meeting Aunt Polly, who makes it clear to him that him and his police force are not welcome.
To make things worse, Ada discovers that she’s pregnant with Freddy’s baby, who is a communist, which leaves Tommy and Aunt Polly shocked and disgusted with it. However, Tommy tells Aunt Polly that she must try and convince her to get rid of it. A baby growing up with a mother and no father will only bring shame and gossip to the family. The brilliant line which Aunt Polly uses in the episode to try to convince Ada to have an abortion: “The baby’s a bastard, you’re a whore, but there’s no word for a man who doesn’t come back!” The relationship between Tommy and Grace is beginning to come alive which could cause heartbreak if he finds out what she is really doing there. They begin drinking and opening up to each other, and she makes it clear to him that she is only there to make an honest living for her life. Towards the end of the episode we meet Billy Kimber, who wants revenge on Tommy for fixing a horse race which cost him to lose….
My favourite character in Peaky Blinders has got to be Aunt Polly! Whilst Tommy is the brains, she is the heart of the family. But a cold heart in a sense and not too motherly. Because she’s the Shelby’s aunt, people presume that she’s just like them, but deep down I don’t think she is, but she chooses to be in order to protect her family. The one annoying thing I find about Peaky Blinders is Andy Nyman as the awful portrayal of young Winston Churchill. His acting and his tone of voice is horrendous and they should have picked another actor to play him!
What I also find very interesting is the fact that Tommy is slowly falling apart and it’s only episode two. His strength of mind is beginning to break slowly and Aunt Polly can secretly see that, but she will let him carry on? The flashbacks of the war in France will be Tommy’s biggest downfall….