Monday, January 18, 2010


During the summer I took a literature course at college that was basically using television shows as a form of literature.

The teacher was great and constantly said, "What makes good television?" The course was amazing and I came away with a number of new shows that I had never seen, but was now interested in viewing.

The first of those shows that I watched were all five seasons of The Wire and I curse myself for never watching it. However, I was very happy to be able to watch all five seasons consecutively without having to wait.

Well, I tossed in the second series that I found interesting during the course and that was Deadwood. I have never been a huge western fan, but I have to say I was immediately drawn to the characters in this show. And there were plenty.

The show focuses on the new town of Deadwood, South Dakota in the late 1800's and for the most part tries to be pretty close to true events. The shows characters are based on real life characters from that time frame, including well known characters that pop up like Wild Bill Hickock and Wyatt Earp.

The main characters of the show are Al Swearengen (Ian McShane), Seth Bullock (Timothy Olyphant), Sol Star (John Hawkes), Charlie Utter (Dayton Callie) and Alma Garret (Molly Parker). The show, however, is very eclectic with its characters as they stretch out almost as much as The Simpsons.

This show only stretches three seasons of 36 shows. It is very unfortunate that the show was canceled after the third season. Deadwood was amazing right from the start, however, the third season really was a gem and was building to something special - but it ended without a real conclusion. I feel season four would have been epic.

It is kind of fun to watch a town build out of nothing with no real rules, but some of the men around camp take it upon themselves to police the town - as long as it is in their own best interest.

There were rumors of a pair of Deadwood movies coming out, but that report has been squashed and it now appears that the show is finished as it is. It saddens me now that I have seen all of the episodes because like I said, the final season was building to an all-out battle between the Deadwood camp and George Hearst.


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