05x14 - Done

Episode transcripts for the TV show "Hell on Wheels". Aired November 6, 2011 - July 23, 2016.
Cullen Bohannon, a former soldier and slaveholder, follows the track of a band of Union soldiers, the killers of his wife. This brings him to the middle of one of the biggest projects in US history, the building of the transcontinental railroad. After the w*r years in the 1860s, this undertaking connected the prospering east with the still wild west.
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05x14 - Done

Post by bunniefuu »

Announcer: Previously, on AMC's "Hell on Wheels"...


When those government inspectors order you to rebuild, it'll cost you a hell of a lot more than Ogden.

Take Ogden, if that'll put an end to this!

Did you have a hand in Chang's m*rder?

Cullen: You don't leave this room till I get back.

I love you, Cullen.

Grant made you Secretary of the Interior to make judgment calls, not to...

You'll get your judgment, Mr. Durant... but not today.


Tell me you haven't melted it down and sold it already.


The Union Pacific provides the final spike, the Central Pacific nails it down, like we agreed.

I agreed to hold a ceremony at the location of your choosing.

Collis, the heaviest thing you've lifted to date is a dessert spoon.

You think my masculine capabilities are insufficient, sir?

I think you'd rather not answer that question in front of 200 of Washington's finest.






Mr. Lee?

Mr. Lee?

Wake up. Translate that.

(SIGHS) Need sleep, bossman.




In Ningpo.

An address?


Ribbed with iron, clad in silver, and crowned with gold, this spike will wed the oceans.

Telegraphs in every major city will buzz to life with the knowledge America's transcontinental railroad is now complete.

At the fall of my hammer, the operator will tap out a three dot transmission.

The message? One word...



Mickey: You don't need another drink, mate.

(GROANS) Hair of the dog.

Give the man a drink!

Pipe down, ya traitor.

What'd you say?

For the love of Josephine, can't a man sleep?

Whiskey damn it.

I called you a traitor.

And we don't serve C.P. here.

Call me traitor again.

It's over, there ain't no sides.

All right?

Except the side of whiskey.

Just give him a drink, for God's sake, Mick.

Ah, shut up, Patrick.

I told you all, there ain't no U.P. and there ain't no C.P., God damn it.

Oi, the hell there ain't. Job or no job, I'm a Union Pacific man.

Your pasty Mic ass'd still be down a mine shaft if it weren't for me.

Psalms: Call me traitor again.

Keep your voices down.

I don't work for you, Bohannon.

You mean the winning side?

Hand to God, the next man who asks me for a drink, I swear I'll throttle him.










Thank you, thank you.


What the hell is this all about?

Mr. Bohannon?





Hell if we know.

Congress requests your presence in Washington to testify against Thomas Durant on charges of bribery, fraud and corruption.

Well, shit.


I ain't going to Washington.

You've been summoned by Congress.

You tell Congress I've a railroad to see to.

Supplies to send West...

The railroad is finished.

President Grant is determined to see all those guilty of corruption over its building punished to the full extent of the law.


You're not yet an old man, Mr. Bohannon, but you are no longer young.

I advise you to reflect on what it is you decide to do next, whose company you choose to keep.

Your subsequent venture will likely determine the shape of your life.

A subpoena is not a request.

A cavalry escort can be arranged if need be.


I'm buying out your stake in the railroad.

But I'm not selling.

I've been indicted.

News will hit the papers tomorrow.

I want no record of your involvement in the Union Pacific.

I helped build the Union Pacific.

You're associated with the d*ad Rabbits.

I'm compelled to cut ties.


Your stock value by tomorrow will plummet.

Stick around, then you'll be broke or in jail or both.

I've buried bodies for you.


I hope you don't want a kiss goodbye, McGinnes.

I'm not your father.

I hope you hang.



Eva, here you are.

Sheets don't wash themselves, Ms. Ellison.

Need all the girls on their backs.

Tricks'll dry up soon as the workers leave.


You want a roll, go round the front, wait your turn.

Oh, Eva, that's not a John.

That's my editor from the Chicago Tribune. He's very interested in you.

I ain't on the menu.

No, he's interested in your story.

He wants me to help you write it, in a book.

Folks don't wanna read about a whore.

It would be a story about a survivor and folks will love it.

Folks will love you.

That ain't been my experience.

This could be a way in for you.

Into what?


If that's what you want.

Or anything, reall A best-selling authoress can write her own ticket.

Slow down, Mr. Bohannon, pack light.

I need you back in San Francisco as soon as you're finished with this Washington business.

That well's deeper than you think.

Careful you don't fall in.

They're interested in Durant, not me.

No, they're a hound with a scent.

Once they've chewed through Durant, they'll come sniffing after us.

I'm ahead of that problem.

It was you, lit that little bonfire in the C.P. Depot last night, huh?

I gosomething for you.

To commemorate the Golden Spike.

Only four like it in the world.

Go ahead, put it on, Mr. Bohannon, you've earned it.

Once you're back in San Francisco, we'll get started on the Southern Pacific.



She doesn't have the romance of the transcontinental, but don't write her off.

She's just beginning.

Plenty of roads to build yet.

Oh, see that?

Railroad man, through and through!

Conductor: All aboard!






Thank you, sir.

Man: Mr. Bohannon?

Archibald Romans, Senior White House Staff.

I'm here to invite you to President Grant's gala this evening.

I ain't much for galas.

In celebration of the completion of the railroad.

I come to testify, Mr. Romans, not socialize.

The President has asked for you personally, Mr. Bohannon.

Grant knows I'm in town?

Your stay at the Willard Hotel has been compensated.

Might I suggest you get yourself checked in and cleaned up before the soiree?



I assume you've been corralled into testifying at this circus tomorrow.

I'm not at liberty to discuss the hearing, Thomas.

Congratulations on driving the golden spike.

I stand accused of bribing government officials.

That's officials like you.

Now, I would advise you to say nothing, we're all in this together, Stephen.

You've been away, so, allow me to fill you in.

You're poison in this town.

And very much in this alone.

Now, if you'll excuse me.

Now these hands...

Have built things.


You're Cullen Bohannon, aren't you?

The man of the hour.

Quite an accomplishment, this railroad of yours.

Thank you ma'am.

You're more handsome than I ever imagined.

You must tell me everything about the Wild West.

They say it isn't safe for a respectable woman.

I'm sorry.

I'm not in the right place.

Margaret, your husband is asking for you.

Oh, George, he's a bore.

And he's hopeless without you, my dear.

Can't begrudge poor Margaret for flirtations.

That's her husband.

Colonel George Armstrong Custer.

Damn impressed with your accomplishment on the railroad, Mr. Bohannon.

Ten miles in a single day, was it?

Well, had me one hell of a crew.

You've the guts and countenance of a good soldier, sir.

Who did you serve?

I rode under General Nathan Bedford Forrest.


That's right.

Shit, I led the charge against you boys at Bull Run.

Had you outnumbered and g*n, but God damn if you didn't give us one hell of a steeplechase.

Where I come from, an ass-whooping amounts to more than a steeplechase, Colonel.

Come over here, boys.

I want you to meet the Grayback son-of-a-bitch who built ten miles of iron road in a single day.

To Mr. Cullen Bohannon...

Toughest whoop-ass on the transcontinental railroad.


Thank you.

He looks at me and he says, "What's a poodle?"

Oh, now.

Oh, at ease, gentlemen.

Mr. Bohannon.

You've met the Colonel, I see.

Bohannon here was just explaining the difference between a blood hound and a poodle.

I got that right, Captain?

Good enough for a Yankee.

Have you boys heard how to tell a good Yankee from a bad one?

Mr. Bohannon?

Why, that's simple, Mr. President. All the good Yankees go home.

Let's go get some real food.

Yes, sir. Nice to meet y'all.


Oh, yes.

Go ahead, eat it.

Those frilled dainties they're serving up there aren't fit to feed men.




Now, if you brought me down here to talk about Thomas Durant...

Oh, I have a Senator who will testify to taking bribes from Doc Durant.

Bad fruit left over from the previous administration.

I don't need your help cleaning house.

We just here for the coffee then?



I'd like to make you a Colonel in the Fourth Cavalry.

You'd be the Undersecretary of the Western Territories for the United States Army.

Your job would be to protect the railroad you've built from all present thr*at.

You mean Indians.

All thr*at, Mr. Bohannon.

Cutthroats and train robbers.

Cattle rustlers along the Texas border.

And, yes, renegade Indians.

I ain't no Indian k*ller.

You're smart enough to prevent bloodshed where possible, and not afraid to get your hands dirty when necessary.

You'd report to the Secretary of the Interior.

Sounds like you're asking me to wear Union Blue.

I'm asking you to wear an American uniform.

Your country needs you, Mr. Bohannon.

Don't deny who you are.

I'm a railroad man.


You're a soldier.

Lost without a w*r to fight.

Ah, damn.

I've got to go make a speech.

Think it over.

Yes, sir.




A backwards rebel right at home in the nation's capital, I never thought I'd see the day.

Ain't nobody more surprised than me, Doc.

Never thought I'd see the day you'd be itching for a train back to Hell on Wheels.

They've turned a Senator.

Several, probably.

I don't know who, but whatever hog they've got tied will squeal loud and clear.


You've gotten outta tighter spots than this.

Grant needs a scapegoat.

I'm out of allies.

Maggie Palmer was right.

She was a good woman.

I loved her.

They brought me here to testify.

Say whatever you want.

Enjoy your newfound favor because it will be over in an instant.

Those men you were laughing with in there, they're not your friends.

They'll bleed you dry, toss you out with yesterday's newspapers.


I came to cash out my 10%.

I've got a big labor contract at the docks in San Francisco.

I thought you'd come along.

I ain't a labor contractor.

Well, we'll keep the whores, then.

Hell, we'll import new ones from France.

I've big plans, Eva.

We're only expanding.

We ran a good enterprise.

I'll always be thankful for that.

But we're bad for each other, Mickey.



That was business.

Come to San Francisco.

We stick together, it's a matter of time before one of us devours the other one, and you know it.

Here you go then.

Good luck to you.

Me leaving's the closest thing we got to a happy ending.

Sounds like you've got it all sorted.

Don't go sour on me.

See yourself away.


The President will see you now.

...property, and free political opinion...

You've reached a decision.

Perfect fit.

Anything else, sir?

No. No, thank you.




Your name and title for the record.

Cullen Bohannon.

Stake-holder and Chief Engineer, Central Pacific Railroad.

Your current title, sir.

Colonel, 4th Cavalry, U.S. Army.

I'll cut right to it, sir.

Have you ever witnessed Thomas Durant offer an elected official a bribe, in form of stock or cash in exchange for favorable legislation?

The transcontinental railroad could not have been built without Thomas Durant.

That wasn't an answer.

I'll ask again.

As a former employee of the Union Pacific, did Thomas Durant ever voice his intention to or offer any bribes to an elected official?

The transcontinental railroad could not have been built without Thomas Durant.

Mr. Bohannon, you have sworn an oath before this committee under penalty of perjury.

We have a dozen Senators on record saying Thomas Durant attempted to bribe them, are you disputing their account of the facts?

The fact I know to be true is that the transcontinental railroad could not have been built without Thomas Durant.

This committee has the authority to hold you in contempt, Colonel.

You have the right to detain me, Governor, but that won't change the fact that the transcontinental railroad could not have been built without...

Both: Thomas Durant.

Thank you, Colonel. That'll be all.

Ed: The lecture circuit won't know what hit them.

First stop, Council Bluffs, day after tomorrow.

But the book isn't written yet.

The book will come, don't worry about that.

In the meantime, your face tells the story better than any book.

Louise: Maybe we should go over the details.

Yes. Walk us through it, Mrs. Toole.

You were headed West with your family when you were attacked by Wild Mojave...



It was...


We was attacked by Yavapai.


Then they traded me to the Mojave for three blankets and a horse.

Three blankets and a horse.

The price of a human soul.

Great detail. Possible title.

Remember that, Ms. Ellison.


So, the Mojave marked your face and made you their sl*ve.

No. Not exactly.

(CHUCKLING) How would you describe it?


Everyone had marks but...

The point is to let Mrs. Toole tell her story in her own words.

Go ahead, Eva.

We won't interrupt.

It was hard at first because I missed my momma.

But then I had me a Mojave...

Had me a Mojave sister and...

I'm sorry, this dress just don't seem to fit right.

(STUTTERS) But, the dress is part of the story, it indicates you... You've been saved.

Saved from what?


From a life of savagery, of course.

The marked face and the dress, we can't have one without the other.

Not now, Ed.

I can't do this.

Eva, we'll get a different dress.

No, it ain't the dress.

The railroad is finished, Eva.

What else will you do?

This is the best that you can hope for.


Oh, God, I...

I'm sorry. I...

I love you, Louise.

But I promised myself I'm done whoring.

Good luck in Chicago.


You're one hell of a sh*t.

Plenty of practice.

Too bad for the Apache.

That's where you're heading, right?

Arizona territory?

Ship out tomorrow.

Apache women are turned on by gore.

Fornicate like rabbits once the k*lling's done, you barely have to force them.

Got myself a few trap trophies from Arizona, had 'em stitched into coin purses.


It ain't that kind of assignment.

Just bringin' a couple of renegades is all.

Grant tell you that?

He's a politician, I suppose he has to.

You're a k*ller.

You know what happens in the fog of w*r.

Got to go see to the wife before I go.

Keep up with my conjugal duties, lest she turn to the postman.

You got yourself a girl?

That's for the best. Kes you focused.

Don't worry about Grant's bullshit.

You'll ship out, k*ll some Injuns, blam, blam, blam, then ride back to Washington a hero.

Nothing better.


Priest: Bless you, my son.

How long has it been since your last confession?

Are you a soldier?

It's all right, my son.

No man is without sin, but you can be forgiven.

Do you seek salvation?

Do you wish to be saved?



Thank you.

Thank you.

Thomas Durant will invoke his fifth amendment right as secured by the constitution of the United States.

Mr. Durant, we have sworn testimony corroborating the charges against you, am I clear you are choosing to let these charges go unanswered by you here today?


As is your constitutional right, so long as you're aware the record of history will remember Thomas Durant as a criminal.

The record of history?

That's right, Mr. Durant.

My client will invoke his right...

The record of history will read, however, the handful of overfed Senators in this room who choose to write it.

I'm not interested in the record of history...

Mr. Durant, please.

I am interested in reality.

Not the one bandied inside the halls of Congress, but the one I witnessed with my own eyes out West.

Five years ago, the American people, torn apart by w*r, cried out into the darkness and turned a hopeful ear to the void for an answer.

Americans needed a dream and I gave them one.

A transcontinental railroad that would unite Dreams don't come pretty, they don't come clean and they sure as hell don't come simple...

They come true.

Truth delivered by lies is no less true, and dreams made reality by f.

1,776 miles of iron track, that is what I delivered!

Track upon which thousands of wheels will now revolve carrying on their axles the wealth of half the world.

Final Destination, San Francisco!

Durant: Drawn by the Iron Horse, announcing to the world with its piercing scream that we are a great people who can accomplish great things.

Yet the American people, driven by their cowardly representatives in Washington, are in need of a villain.

And so here I sit, elected by you, to play my part...

The part of the scapegoat.

The patsy. Sent into the wilderness so that men sitting in this room can lay their sins upon my back, and claim they themselves are clean.

Men enjoying immunity while enriching themselves on the backs of those who sacrificed everything to make manifest America's destiny.

Lives have been lost.

Men have been ruined.

I saw it, and I survived.

I will not return from the wild having made America's dream a reality only to have six bureaucrats in starched collars judge the manner in which I realized that dream.

Put me on trial, lock me in prison, erase me from the record.

For history is written in pencil...

And the truth is carved in steel across this nation.

And one truth above all others is this...

Without me and men like me, your glorious railroad could never have been built.



To everyone who made Hell on Wheels... And to everyone who loves it, AMC says thank you for a hell of a ride.
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