A Lie Agreed Upon, Part 1
An anxious Swearengen calls out Bullock over the Sheriff's relationship with Alma; the resulting confrontation turns inadvertently public -- and violent. With a new business venture on the horizon, Stubbs and Tolliver await the arrival of some new whores on the next stage, which also bears two reminders of Bullock's past.
A Lie Agreed Upon, Part 2
As the day's injured recoup, the night brings a new set of tensions. Alma and an increasingly self-destructive Bullock face a decision on their future, even as the Sheriff seeks to make good on a pledge. At the Gem, while Swearengen readies for another showdown with Bullock, infighting between Adams and Dority yields more feed for Wu's pigs.
Francis Wolcott, tricky chief scout for a powerful mining operation, arrives to shake up the status quo--beginning with Tolliver. Dority, Burns and Trixie fret as an ailing Swearengen refuses visitors and medical attention. Farnum finds a choice mark to buy the Hickok letter, but it soon becomes unclear who's conning whom.
Requiem for a Gleet
Cochran contemplates a procedure that could cure Swearengen -- or kill him. His employer indisposed, Dority must attend to a former fellow-bushwacker's request. Bullock attempts to settle into domesticity, while Star gets a new combination bookkeeper/roommate -- Trixie. The arrival of County Commissioner Hugo Jarry spawns rumors about the camp's future.
As a convalescing Swearengen bridles, Cochran schools Burns and Dority in how best to assist his recovery. Alma is also feeling unwell, in the mornings. Unexpected profits at the Chez Ami lead Tolliver to a discovery about Wolcott. Bullock protects Commissioner Jarry from an angry mob, which redirects its ire.
Something Very Expensive
Alma proposes forming a bank, and looks to familiar faces to run it. To test himself, Swearengen grants audience to a long line of supplicants; talks with Farnum and Miss Isringhausen prove most illuminating. Humiliated by Bullock, an angry claim owner looks to "square the scales." Wolcott's inner demons test his alliance with Tolliver.
E.B. Was Left Out
Tolliver enlists Lee to clean up Wolcott's mess. Stubbs confides in Utter, who overreacts when Wolcott 'steps on his toe.' Swearengen informs Alma of a Pinkerton agent in camp; she and Bullock confer about her bank--and other expanding prospects. Tolliver's try at damage control backfires when he asks Swearengen to convene a Camp Fathers meeting.
Wolcott offers on a rich claim operated by two ornery brothers, and reports to Hearst on their progress. Nuttall unveils his new bicycle--but some doubt that he can ride it. Swearengen and Bullock discuss alternatives to annexing the Hills to Dakota. Miss Isringhausen strikes a deal with Swearengen; Alma receives proposals from both Martha and Ellsworth.
Amalgamation And Capital
Merrick goes overboard printing rumors in the 'Pioneer,' earning rebuke from Swearengen. Tolliver aims to fleece Mose Manuel of his bloodstained profits. Utter's enraged when Wolcott interrupts his and Bullock's interrogation of Mose. Alma's note causes Swearengen to amend his deal with Miss Isringhausen. Jane and Stubbs continue their alliance.
Advances, None Miraculous
When Cochran delivers a dire prognosis, the entire camp stands vigil. Swearengen enlists Star and Adams to plan a con on Commissioner Jarry. Andy Cramed offers himself as the camp's new minister. With Martha regretting her move to Deadwood, Bullock searches for encouraging words. Trixie pressures Alma to accept Ellsworth's proposal.
The Whores Can Come
Telegraph lines to Yankton heat up as Jarry fears Bullock and Hearst have each thrown their weight behind Montana. Swearengen uses a camp tragedy to delay an altercation between Wu and Lee. Tolliver refuses the newly-reformed Cramed a clergyman's respect, while even Gem whores flesh out the crowd at the minister's open service.
Boy The Earth Talks To
As Deadwood readies for a celebration, George Hearst's arrival in camp brings upheaval. Swearengen's manipulations extract a counter-offer from Yankton. Hearst comes to arrangements with Farnum and Swearengen. Tolliver seeks to improve his position with Hearst at Wolcott's expense. Tensions in Chinaman's Alley boil over.
Tell Your God to Ready for Blood
Deadwood's first true elections are approaching, with the offices of sheriff (Bullock vs. Harry Manning) and mayor (E.B. Farnum vs. Sol Star) to be contested. Meanwhile, Hearst offers Bullock his political backing in exchange for Bullock's promise to exert influence over certain areas of the camp.
I Am Not the Fine Man You Take Me For
A cryptic note delivered by Captain Turner tips off Swearengen to another bloody incident at the Gem; later, Hearst makes his intentions known in a more straightforward message. While Jane finds a captive audience for her oratory skills, the candidates for mayor and sheriff aren't as fortunate.
Deadwood ushers in some new arrivals on the stagecoach: Jack Langrishe, a flamboyant stage promoter and old friend of Swearengen, and Aunt Lou Marchbanks, Hearst's longtime cook who settles in nicely as the Grand Central chef. Also returning to town is a newly westernized Wu, with news for "Swegin" about a soon-to-arrive group of imported Hearst workers.
Full Faith and Credit
Amidst as much fanfare as Deadwood can muster, Alma opens Deadwood's first bank. Cochran ministers to Tolliver, but it's unclear now who's sicker. Hostetler and Fields return to Deadwood, looking to settle scores and move on. Captain Turner throws down a gauntlet to Dority, who hesitates to pick it up.
A Two-Headed Beast
Enabled by Leon, Alma reverts to her bad habits, though she's able to exhibit enough charm to get Merrick to endorse her bank's liquidity during a crisis. Swearengen, still trying to decipher Hearst's intentions, finally finds use for Farnum. Dority rises to Captain Turner's challenge, driving Hearst to the Bella Union, where Bullock hands him an earful.
A Rich Find
Aunt Lou's long-lost son, Odell Marchbanks, arrives in Deadwood after a circuitous trip from Liberia, although his mother soon attempts to orchestrate his immediate departure. Bullock and Swearengen contemplate a preemptive strike against Hearst, whose ire has been inflamed overnight. Alma's bad habits lose her Trixie's bank services.
Odell makes Hearst a proposition involving 'the color,' causing his mother to fret for his safety. The camp elders hold another Gem meeting, complete with peaches and cinnamon, to map out a strategy to deal with Hearst. Their solution, proposed by Bullock via a letter to the family of a slain Cornishman, promises to make news in "The Pioneer."
The Pioneer edition featuring Bullock's letter is published, raising concerns about Hearst's response. Erstwhile lawman Wyatt Earp and his brother Morgan ride into town, having defended a stagecoach against sabotage. Maintaining that they intend to work on a timber lease won in a card game, some question the brothers' actual motives.
As Deadwood is overrun by Hearst's men, Bullock issues contingency plans to Martha. Wu, caught in a Pinkerton stampede, delivers a cryptic message to Swearengen; it takes Burns, of all people, to decipher it. Barrett makes Merrick pay for embarrassing Hearst in 'The Pioneer;' Morgan Earp calls out one of the "Pistoleros."
A Constant Throb
With Bullock campaigning away from camp, Alma finds herself targeted by Hearst's henchmen, and finds shelter with (of all people) Swearengen. Sent to the Gem with a missive from Hearst, Barrett is treated rudely by its proprietor, who turns to familiar methods to get the henchmen to reveal his boss' future plans.
The Cat Bird Seat
Bullock holds a meeting to determine which emergencies warrant wiring him in Sturgis, where he and Harry are delivering pitches. The first summons doesn't take long, as Hearst follows up Alma's close call with one that's decidedly more on-target. In the aftermath, Alma takes refuge at the Gem, again, while Trixie decides to take matters into her own hands.
Tell Him Something Pretty
The camp turns out to vote -- but as Bullock notes, the election may already have been decided. Stubbs reaches out to a frustrated Tolliver, who finds himself with a folded hand as the action heats up. Through Farnum, Hearst issues his conditions for departure, forcing Swearengen to finish what Burns can't.