The date is October 16, 1864, and we open at Gillis Devery’s Five Points Dentistry, where everyone is happy, because everyone is high. Andy O’Brien needs some dental work done, and we’re not talkin’ fillings or bridges or porcelain veneers. In 1864, a trip to the dentist involved a few hits of happy gas and a sturdy pair of pliers. Gillis is too blitzed to pull Andy’s rotted tooth, so his wife Ethel gives it a go. She gives a mighty pull and – oops! – yanks the wrong tooth, which earns her a beating from her husband.
And you thought your trip to the dentist was bad.
Later Andrew retells the whole jolly tale to his wife Sybil, having a good chuckle over the hilarity of spousal abuse, until Sybil shuts him up with her fist. She’d kick sh*t outta Devery if he ever laid a hand on her, which is probably true, and just think of the money Morehouse would make off tickets to that fight. But we’ll never see the dentist and Sybil throw down, because Devery? He’s dead.
The first officer on the scene is Sergeant Padraic Byrnes, who does a real bang up job preserving evidence. He picks through the entire lot – stealing money, pocketing gold fillings, drinking the wine, eating the fruitcake… all the while feeling pleased as punch to make such a profit off the dentist’s death. And just when you start wishing that the good Sergeant would do everyone in Five Points a favor and drop dead, well, Byrnes leans over, pukes, and dies. Later, boyo!
Doc Freeman confirms that the fruitcake killed the dentist and the Sarge – the special ingredient was arsenic-based rat poison. Yum. So who poisoned the fruitcake? The cake box has a handwritten card, and Corcoran matches the handwriting to Devery’s landlord, Lunsford. Lunsford admits he gave Devery the cake – but he didn’t mean to kill the guy. The fruitcake was a REGIFT. This is why you never, ever regift. Ever. Turns out Lunsford got the cake from a butcher named Hans Elek.
Are you still following? It gets more complicated.
Corky pays the butcher Elek a visit, who confesses he’s been having an affair with Devery’s wife, Ethel. Ethel used to bake Elek fruitcakes, but when Elek owed his landlord Lunsford money, he put one of her fruitcakes in a new box and regifted. So how did the cake get poisoned in the first place? Turns out Devery KNEW his wife was having an affair, so he poisoned the fruitcake himself, hoping to kill Elek! In other words, the dentist murdered HIMSELF! Are you totally and completely lost? Let’s take a look at this sequentially:
Ethel bakes her lover Elek a fruitcake. Devery, Ethel’s husband, knows she’s baking secret love pies for Elek, so he poisons the cake with arsenic. Elek gets the cake, puts it in a new box, and regifts it to his landlord, Lunsford. Lunsford visits the dentist and regifts to Devery. Devery digs into his own poisoned cake, and boom, dies. Boyo!
So Copperheads, remember, never regift, and NEVER regift fruitcake. Poisoned or not, fruitcake is always gross.
Five (More) Points
Five Points Fight Club
A note to Morehouse: If you’re gonna have a rigged fight, make sure one of the fighters agrees to lose. Jasper, channeling Rocky, kicked the Irish outta “Irish” Jake for 71 rounds until a ref had to step in and cold-cock Jasper.
In a last ditch effort to set Annie on the righteous path, Elizabeth calls in the big guns – a Monsignor. It goes really well! Annie tries to seduce him, flips out, shoves Elizabeth against a wall, and bolts for the door. God: 0 Annie: 1
The Return of John Reilly
It’s a shame Corky didn’t kill John Reilly when he had the chance. Dead-beat John’s back, and looking to collect his ten-year-old wifey. He dupes Elizabeth into believing he’s Annie’s father, so Elizabeth hands Annie over. When Corky finds out, he’s gonna lose it.
Don’t Lie to A Detective
And For Dessert…
Dig in to that delicious “Washington cake” that Andrew O’Brien was plowing through: Temptations of the Washington Cake
So Copperheads, what did you think of the show? Leave your reviews and commentary in the comments below!