'Peaky Blinders': 5 reasons why we want Tom Hardy's character, Alfie Solomons, to return in season 5
He was their friend, their enemy, their advisor, and their well-wisher, and without him the Shelby clan is incomplete
BBC One's show created by Steven Knight, 'Peaky Blinders', is all set to return with its fifth season in the upcoming year's Spring, but among the series' characters who will not return for the fifth season are the youngest Shelby brother, John (played by Joe Cole), and May Carleton (played by Charlotte Riley).
Fans are probably grieved by the fact that the show's beloved villain, Alfie Solomons, will not return. Played by Tom Hardy, Alfie was a key character in all the four seasons of the show, which starred Cillian Murphy (as Thomas Shelby), Paul Anderson (as Arthur Shelby), and Helen McCrory (as Aunt Polly). 'Peaky Blinders' has been following the plight of the infamous Birmingham gang notorious for slitting the eyes of their enemies with the blades attached to their blinder caps.
As the fourth season saw Thomas Shelby, the ruthless leader of the mafia Shelby family, become a Member of the Parliament by seducing the Communists, it also saw the final encounter between Thomas and his trusted yet dangerous enemy, Alfie Solomons. Suffering from skin cancer, Alfie chose Thomas to kill him in the iconic scene from the finale of the fourth season which saw the two characters face each other for the last time on Margate beach, where Thomas finally shot Alfie, freeing him of all the pain inflicted by skin cancer.
While the scene certainly established Alfie as the greatest antagonist in the show, it definitely left fans grieving for the character who had managed to steal away the spotlight lurking over Thomas Shelby through his sheer presence.
Watch that iconic scene below (if you haven't cried enough already):
Although the character of Thomas Shelby truly found its voice in Murphy, whose small yet stout appearance makes him the perfect fit to play the cold-hearted gangster, we can say this charismatic character almost falls behind the curtains everytime he is placed next to the antagonist, Alfie Solomons.
'Peaky Blinders' is a great show for the way it has been telling its story, and it has managed to out-do every crime-thriller through its judgment of characters. While on one hand, Alfie Solomons is there to fill up the space of a much needed opposing force to Thomas, he has, more than often, served as the foil to Thomas Shelby's designs, and that is precisely why we will miss him in the fifth season.
Keeping our fingers crossed, here are the five reasons why we would totally want Alfie to return:
1. He does not mind honking at Thomas
Let's just admit that every time we look at Cillian Murphy dressed as Thomas Shelby, the appearance itself is enough to chill us to the bones. However, surprisingly the same has been felt for Alfie Solomons, who despite his ridiculous sense of clothing has managed to appear like a Goliath in front of Thomas.
Alfie is probably the only other villain in the story who has more than often acted as a friend to his enemies. He is the only one who can honk his car as loudly as possible in front of Shelby's house but still get away with it. Alfie was, after all, not just an enemy Thomas kept his eyes on, he was the secret advisor to the Shelby clan in all their business and encounters with other mafia groups.
2. A borderless morality
None of the characters in the show have a clear-cut moral structure, and in the case of Alfie, the thin line between what is good and what is bad simply does not exist. Known as the "Wandering Jew", Alfie has time and again proved the fact that his acts are not driven by ethics but a contextual morality which is bound to change with time.
While on one hand, he himself does not mind getting his hands red with the blood of his enemies, on the other hand, he seems to be very clear about whom he chooses as his enemy. In fact, Alfie was the one who put the thought in Thomas' head that family is the real deal in their business, and meddling with family might even result in their deaths. Other than McCrory's character, Polly, Alfie is the only who could bring Thomas back on track.
3. The un-called protector
Alfie Solomons might have betrayed the Shelbys on many occasions but he never gave up his chance to act as their protector. When Thomas brought him in to encounter the Russians, people with whom Alfie was already in a turbulent tie with due to being treated like a criminal during the war, he not only showed immense artistry in manipulating the Russians but also proved himself to be just the manipulator Thomas wanted him to be. He often uses his strong voice and large structure to intimidate people around him but at the same time, he does not shy away from being kind to those who are not as strong-willed as him and Thomas.
4. The much-needed comic relief
Alfie Solomons is the much-needed touchstone of the show, and his sharp-edged wit kept getting better with every season. We all remember the hilarious moment when he tried to convince Arthur, who was infuriated by his betrayal in the third season, that in spite of pretending to be on the Russians' side, he truly cared for the second Shelby brother.
It was almost like Alfie handing over candy to Arthur to keep him from crying. Adding up to all of that, Alfie's key feature lies in the fact that he can even make a murder look ridiculously funny. After all, who other than Alfie can say, "I once carried out my own personal form of stigmata on an Italian. I pushed his face up against a trench and shoved a six-inch nail up his f**king nose and I hammered it home with a duckboard. It was f**king biblical, mate" and still put up an innocent face.
5. What happened to Cyril?
We are, seriously, just like the fans, worried about what happened to Alfie's bullmastiff, Cyril. We know the dog was on the beach when his master was shot, but we did not see him leaving the body and chasing after Thomas. A fan on Twitter actually mentioned: "Tommy should have taken Cyril, Alfie’s #bullmastiff. The poor pup would be traumatized, they’re such a sensitive breed...Alfie was right @ThePeakyBlinder He’d make a great pal for Charlie #savecyril."
I hope both of these two bad boys are in season 5 Alfie and Cyril is iconic pic.twitter.com/qumZoL8VD5— Kaya (@kayaMUFC) January 17, 2018
If not for anything else, we really hope Alfie returns for Cyril and who knows, Thomas might need a little help with handling the Glasgow mafia who are about to set foot in the Shelby kingdom in the fifth season.