Deadwood's back and looks to be a good as ever...

(Portions of this post appeared previously in these virtual pages)

The scripting and acting and directing of Deadwood is still extraordinary with multi-level oblique conspiracy ongoing and involving more or less everyone.

Most people have noticed -- of course -- the amazing stellar performance of Ian McShane as Al Swearengen. But EVERY actor in the ensemble series is revealed, sooner or later, to be doing something above and beyond what might be expected or even hoped-for, with complex unstated undercurrents enriching each one, whether it's the perennially-underrated Brad Dourif (I still remember his amazing performance with Michael Ironside in 1989's Chaindance aka Common Bonds as Doc Cochran or William Sanderson in an insanely grotesque portrayal of the devious, semi-literate and sensitive E.B.Farnum, or the truly amazing Robin Wiegert as Calamity Jane.

The characters are generally debased, brutalized, opportunistic, and murderous, but, other than perhaps Powers Boothe's presenting a brilliant Face of Evil as Cy Tolliver, sooner or later we find that every one of them has some standards, some principles, complexity, even something one might call a personal morality.

You can continue all the way down the cast list and see what might be "personal-best" performances from damn near evereyone -- Jeffrey Jones as A.W. Merrick, Paula Malcomson as Trixie, Molly Parker (who creatred a character we'd never seen before -- or since -- in Center of the World in 1991 -- complex, unsweetened, searing) as Alma Garrett,
W. Earl Brown who makes Dan Dorrity something deep out of a role that could have been nothing, Geri Jewell who plays her disability as Jewell with the boldness and timing of the standup comic she also is, , Keone Young as Mr. Wu, Dayton Callie as Charlie Utter, the marvelous Kim Dickens as Joanie Stubbs, Timothy Olyphant as Seth Bullock, John Hawkes as Sol Star, Leon Rippy as Tom Nuttal, and the unnamed actor portraying a character gradually emerging as a viewer-favorite, E.B. Farnum's factotem Richardson -- the dim-witted pagan who prays to the Horned God --

and what is the matter with those c-ksuckers that run the HBO Deadwood site?

They don't think he's important enough to list?

Have I missed anyone? Of course I have -- but that doesn't mean they aren't worthy of recognition.


This is it for a complete season.
HBO offered a 6-episode season next year, by David Milch turned it down as not enough time to complete the story, which, historically, HAD a definite time limit, then settled for two 2-hour shows.

(Does that seem like a bad deal? Couldn't accept only 6 so he negotiated for 4?)

Well, who am I to ever suggest the man doesn't know what he's doing? Obviously he does.

Perhaps a single 2-hour episode allows more story and complexity than two individual hours. Or something.

I favor the perspective of being quite glad to have and have had as much as we have.


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