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Boardwalk Empire

HBO, Sept. 16, 9 p.m. ET/PT |

DRAMA

Last season the crime drama set in Prohibition-era Atlantic City was a big, gaudy Ferris wheel that barely moved-leaving the great Steve Buscemi, as crime lord Nucky Thompson, stuck as the story got bogged down by the evil shenanigans of his former underling (Michael Pitt). Season 3 revolves so fast it’s dizzying. Why? Bobby Cannavale. As mobster Gyp Rosetti, a psycho enraged when Nucky cuts him from his black-market-booze run, Cannavale oozes dark, oily malevolence. Put his floridness up against Buscemi’s poker-faced acidity-he’s like a pickled Richard Nixon-and you get fireworks.

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