The premiere episode of Peaky Blinders Season 6 saw Thomas Shelby take a trip to Miquelon Island. There he met with his cousin Michael Gray for the first time in 4 years. He also encounters some angry locals at a pub. Miquelon Island has an interesting history that plays into this scene in Peaky Blinders. Here’s everything you need to know.
Tommy visits Miquelon Island in the ‘Peaky Blinders’ Season 6 premiere
Peaky Blinders Season 6 begins in the aftermath of Tommy’s failed attempt to assassinate Oswald Mosley. After a brief scene, the series jumps ahead four years to Miquelon Island on December 5, 1933. Tommy enters a hotel bar to await his meeting with Michael Gray and orders a glass of water.
Tommy speaks French with the bartender, who warns him that many locals on Miquelon are drunk and angry that Prohibition is coming to an end. “Half the men on this island made their living bootlegging until today,” he tells Tommy. “The other half fixed their boats.” One of these angry locals confronts Tommy for drinking only water, which ends up being a big mistake.
Miquelon Island experienced an economic boom during Prohibition
The small islands of Saint Pierre and Miquelon remain the last piece of French territory in North America. They are located off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador, though they are not a part of Canada at all. This explains the French flags and the use of the French language in Peaky Blinders.
Prohibition was an interesting time for Miquelon Island. The small territory enjoyed a short 13-year economic boom, during which the island had a big role in smuggling illegal alcohol into the United States. According to newfoundlandlabrador.com, Al Capone himself used the island and was a client of Hotel Robert. This is the very hotel Tommy enters in Peaky Blinders.
When Prohibition ended in 1933, Miquelon Island sank into an economic depression. Based on the attitude of the men at Hotel Robert, they seem well aware of the upcoming financial troubles ahead of them. When Tommy entered the hotel and ordered only water, it sent one man over the edge. However, he made the serious mistake of picking a fight with a Peaky Blinder.
Tommy Shelby gives up alcohol in ‘Peaky Blinders’ Season 6
Tommy’s refusal to drink whiskey on Miquelon Island in Peaky Blinders Season 6 wasn’t meant to be an insult to the locals. Throughout the series, Tommy deals with PTSD from the war, and alcohol only makes things worse. In the season 6 premiere, he states, “I now realize that whiskey is just fuel for the loud engines inside your head.”
He also tells the angry men in Miquelon, “I will not drink your toast because four years ago I foreswore alcohol.” He adds, “Since I foreswore alcohol, I’ve become a calmer and more peaceful person.”
All episodes of Peaky Blinders are currently streaming on Netflix.