Peaky Blinders: why the women are becoming the most important characters

It looks like two characters have already met an untimely end in Peaky Blinders

After some ups and downs in Peaky Blinders series 3, creator Steven Knight’s gangster drama returned on Wednesday with a hail of bullets. It had everything and more that fans could hope for.

Warning: there will be spoilers for series 3 and the first episode of series 4 ahead.

If you’re not watching Peaky Blinders yet, there’s still time to catch up. With the first three complete series on Netflix, now is the time for a Blinders binge. My advice: watch how the female characters develop.

The first episode of series 4 was confident, blood-soaked and packed a hell of a punch. With many members of the Shelby family facing the noose at the start of the episode, it seemed that things could only get better from there. The gang were all rescued at the last minute, but forgiveness was not to be forthcoming. After all, it was Tommy that had them locked away in the first place.

Watch the women

Polly appeared to be the most affected by her moment in the noose. And it is Polly that Tommy now most has to fear in this series. It seems to be the women in Tommy’s life that may find it hardest to forgive him. Polly is (for now) drugged up and boozing, furious with both Tommy, and her own son for becoming his shadow.

Esme and Linda similarly feel nothing but righteous anger at Tommy and want to keep themselves and their husbands well away from him. Well it’s now too late for one of them.

Added to that mix is new character Jessie Eden, union activist and a clear match for Tommy. Their scene together in the first episode of the series promised a burning rivalry to come. And it’s no mistake that Eden was introduced in the kind of stylistic fashion that is usually only reserved for the gangsters themselves.

Peaky Blinders series four: viewers left ‘horrified’ by explosive first episode
Bullets and bloodshed

The episode climaxed firstly with Tommy brutally dispatching an assassin in his own home. Among the carcasses being prepared for a feast, Tommy struck the first blow of the season against the Changretta family.

He ended up covered in blood, but with one potential threat eliminated. No rest for the wicked though. As soon as it looked like we might be getting all the gang back together, John and Michael were ambushed at John’s house and shot down by Changretta goons.

It’s sad to have lost John (probably), but hopefully Michael is going to survive the hit he took. Once again, beyond the shock and sadness, it comes back to the women. How will Esme react to the death of John? How will Polly react to the shooting of her son Michael?

Even with the sinister introduction of Adrien Brody’s new baddie, I think it’s the women that Tommy really has to watch out for. If anyone can put a stop to Tommy’s ruthless reign, it’s probably going to be them.

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