In keeping with the excellence of their original series HBO hit another homerun with Deadwood which ran from 2004 to 2006. The series featured great acting from stars like Ian McShane, Timothy Olyphant, Molly Parker, and William Sanderson. Since Deadwood Ian McShane has done more family friendly work. He was most recently featured in the hit film Pirates of the Carribean: On Stranger Tides. Olyphant is currently starring in the FX series Justified which was nominated for four Emmys in 2011.
The series is based on the gritty life of the people in Deadwood, South Dakota in the late 1800s. As a territory there is a constant struggle for dominance led by Al Swearengen (McShane) and his thugs. Meanwhile a quiet and deliberate Seth Bullock (Olyphant) tries to avoid the contention while he tries to start his own business. The cast of characters creates a world of gambling, brothels, and violence that come together in dark and dirty ways. Along the way this small community also has to come together to protect themselves from outside forces seeking to take over.
This series is a dark and gritty one. There is sex and violence just under the surface at all times. From the exploitation of the brothels to the violence in the streets the series doesn’t pull punches and no one is immune from the consequences.
I think this series was the biggest casualty of the writer’s strike. The only criticism I have for this series is that it never ended, leaving the viewers wondering what might have happened next.
As I’ve already stated, this isn’t a series for the whole family. This is a graphic and dark series that should keep this in the adults only category. I would suggest this series for anyone who enjoys the shows produced by HBO.
Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 3 seasons