COPPER 2.12 ‘Beautiful Dreamer’
Episode Title: "Beautiful Dreamer"
Writer: Thomas Kelly
Director: Kari Skogland
Previously on "Copper:"
After an intense game of Russian roulette, Corky (Tom Weston-Jones) gets the better of General Donovan (Donal Logue), putting an end to the corrupt Tammany Hall businessman’s stranglehold on Five Points. But whereas Donovan could be civilized in his criminal dealings, his man, David Holland will punch your mom in the face and cut off your toes to get what he wants.
“Copper” has had some nasty baddies, but Holland takes the cake as he and his men go on the hunt for Corky, now a wanted fugitive in the murder of General Donovan. Captain Sullivan (Ron White) is forced to issue the order to his men to bring Corky in, though he knows better. O’Brien (Dylan Taylor) urges the Captain to be a man and stand up for what’s right, but the bitter and jaded Sullivan doesn’t see the point. And perhaps he knows what we all know: that Corky is savvy enough to get himself out of whatever trouble he’s in. Unfortunately, Sullivan’s elderly mother and Officer Flynn suffer for it.
In one of the most shocking moments in the short two season history of "Copper," Holland surprises Sullivan when the Captain finds him at home chatting with his mother. Holland wants to know why Eva was released. Sullivan explains that Corky claimed Donovan had her moved for questioning. Of course, Donovan’s dead and Holland punishes Sullivan for freeing Eva by punching the old woman in the face.
Meanwhile, Corky sends Officer Flynn to Robert Morehouse’s home with a stack of papers from Donovan’s office. The documents detail Donovan’s corruption, giving Corky and Morehouse (Kyle Schmid) everything they need to expose the late General’s crimes. Unfortunately for Flynn, Holland gets a hold of him and demands to know what was in the satchel he brought to Morehouse. His refusal to talk costs Flynn a couple of toes, which he later brings to the Freemans. The doctor hands them to Sara (Tessa Thompson) who’s probably wishing she left town with her mother, right about now.
With nowhere to else to go, Corky decides to drop by McGrath’s place. As expected, they have sex and it looks like the lonely woman wants him to stick around, but Corky's not the commitment type. Especially when he’s got Holland and Tammany Hall “fixer,” “Wild Bill” Eustice (William Baldwin) after him.
Unlike Holland, Eustice is a mild-mannered man who’s willing to listen to reason. He tries to bribe Sullivan with a job offer and theater tickets and when Corky gets the newspaper to put Donovan and his crimes on the front page, Eustice calls him a “cute bastard.” After ambushing and killing Holland in an alleyway, Corky learns it’s Eustice who’s after him and goes to see him.
Unlike Corky’s showdown with Donovan, the meeting with Eustice is fairly anti-climatic. Corky wants Donovan’s death ruled a suicide, but Eustice tells him it’s already been reported an accidental death due to a gun-cleaning mishap. Corky’s bummed Donovan will go out a hero, but at least Five Points is rid of him. Eustice agrees to drop the charges against Eva and build the aqueduct in another neighborhood.
It’s a big win for Corky and Five Points which is celebrated, naturally, at Eva’s Paradise, now open again for business. But the revelry is interrupted when Freeman (Ato Essandoh) makes a rare appearance in the saloon, announcing President Lincoln’s assassination. It’s a huge moment for a historical drama like “Copper,” which should play a large part in next week’s season finale.
And it’s an especially sobering scene for an episode that was full of lighter moments, like Holland yelling at Corky and his men, “you just shot me in the balls” and Sara telling Mrs. McGrath she’s the first person Corky’s brought over who’s not dead or bleeding.
With General Donovan gone, Five Points is saved, but what effect will Lincoln’s assassination have on its citizens? Historical dramas benefit from built-in events and crisis like this one. It'll be interesting to see how the writers chose to wrap their finale around such a crushing moment in American history and what new challenges Five Points will face as a result.