As the details of HBO's Boardwalk Empire emerged, it quickly became the most anticipated programme in the network's history. The excitement was understandable - not only was the show created by Terence Winter, the man behind The Sopranos, but Martin Scorsese was one of the executive producers and would make a rare crossover to television by directing the pilot. Plus the cast was headed by the great Steve Buscemi and included some of the finest character actors in the business, whose previous work has included No Country for Old Men, This is England, and The Wire. Now that the prohibition epic has finally hit our screens, Boardwalk Empire has proven to be every bit as smart, brutal and thrilling as had been anticipated. Already renewed for a second season, it is set to become one of the defining series of the decades.