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Deadwood: Season 1
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(HBO Dramatic Series) 1876. In the Black Hills of South Dakota lies Deadwood, a lawless town inhabited by a mob of restless misfits ranging from an ex-lawman to a scheming saloon owner to the legendary Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane. The richest gold strike in American history provides the backdrop for HBO's next great drama.]]>
Set in an ungoverned stretch of South Dakota soon after the 1876 Custer massacre, Deadwood concerns a lawless, evolving town attracting fortune-seekers, drifters, tyrants, and burned-out adventurers searching for a card game and a place to die. Others, particularly women trapped in prostitution, sundry do-gooders, and hangers-on have nowhere else to go. Into this pool of aspiration and nightmare arrive former Montana lawman Seth Bullock (Timothy Olyphant) and his friend Sol Starr (John Hawkes), determined to open a lucrative hardware business. Over time, their paths cross with a weary but still formidable Wild Bill Hickok (Keith Carradine) and his doting companion, the coarse angel Calamity Jane (Robin Weigert); an aristocratic, drug-addicted widow (Molly Parker) trying to salvage a gold mining claim; and a despondent hooker (Paula Malcomson) who cares, briefly, for an orphaned girl. Casting a giant shadow over all is a blood-soaked king, Gem Saloon owner Al Swearengen (Ian McShane), possibly the best, most complex, and mesmerizing villain seen on TV in years. Over 12 episodes, each of these characters, and many others, will forge alliances and feuds, cope with disasters (such as smallpox), and move--almost invisibly but inexorably--toward some semblance of order and common cause. Making it all worthwhile is Milch's masterful dialogue--often profane, sometimes courtly and civilized, never perfunctory--and the brilliant acting of the aforementioned performers plus Brad Dourif, Leon Rippy, Powers Boothe, and Kim Dickens. --Tom Keogh
Top Customer Reviews
Perhaps you've heard of the series, but never gave it a look. Or perhaps you were warned by others that the language was so profane as to render it unwatchable. True, the series isn't for anyone under the age of 18, but it must be understood that this semi-historical piece was written to represent the actual dialect and social tenor of the region at that time. Deadwood was a rough place without real law, and gold was on everyone's mind. All the elements for great drama were there. Greed, corruption, deceipt, innocence, morality (or a lack thereof), hope, hate, fear, addiction, murder, jealousy and love. Deadwood truly represents a kind of sociological study of human evolution within a laissez faire society.
It was clear from episode 1 that the new Deadwood series on HBO was something special. By episode 4, I was certain that Emmy nominations/awards were imminent. The show was largely ignored by the Emmys, likely sufferering from a combination of "newcomer syndrome" and overshadowing by The Sopranos. But make no mistake, it was more than worthy with the actors comprising a splendid balance of the familiar and the unfamiliar. Regardless of fame however, there isn't an off performance to be found in the season. Nor is there a grossly derivitive one. The characters are all satisfyingly deep, nuanced and often downright quirky.Read more ›
"Deadwood" becomes the nexus for some of the most important figures of the old west creating a great opportunity for storytelling from writer/creator/producer David Milch ("NYPD Blue"). A sprawling, down and dirty revisionist western, the pilot directed by Walter Hill ("Southern Comfort", "Hard Times", "The Warriors") features marvelous performances from Ian McShane, Brad Dourif, Timothy Olyphant, Molly McShane, Keith Carradine and Powers Boothe. Authentic right down to the pig crap, "Deadwood" features the great dialogue, action and storytelling skills we've come to expect from Milch, Hill and the other collaborators on this cable TV series. A warning for viewers--you'll hear a lot of bad words because, well, because Milch feels that folks spoke like that back then.
There may only be 12 episodes included here but they're all high quality. My only complaint is that the series probably could have been packaged with more episodes per disc making the set less cumbersome.Read more ›
"Deadwood" was created by David Milch, who always gets mentioned as being the creator of "NYPD Blue," but whom I always laud as the writer of "Trial by Fury," the third season premier episode of "Hill Street Blues," which remains on my personal list of ten best television episodes I have ever seen. To jog your memory, it is the one where a nun is raped and murdered and Frank Furillo coerces a confession from one of the killers by threatening to drop charges and have them released to an angry public. The threat was of vigilante justice, which is certainly an element of "Deadwood."
The time is 1876, which is when the nation's centennial was soured by the news of Custer's defeat at the Little Bighorn. Deadwood is in the South Dakota Territory, where statehood threatens to bring law and order, which the locals consider more of a threat than Indian attack. The men play cards, get drunk, and dream of mining for gold, which allows them to indulge in more gambling, drinking, with money left over for buying the services of a woman for a night as well.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I do not know of a film that depicts the TRUE story of the Native American's fight to hold on to their way of life, the only life they knew. Read morePublished 8 hours ago by Dnon
Not bad, does give some insight into life in the "Wild West", it did seem at times the dialog just used the F-bomb just because being on HBO they could. Read morePublished 8 hours ago by Amazon Customer
Very good story. Great cast. Would have given it 4.5 if there wasn't so much gratuitous profanity in it.Published 11 hours ago by Bristowcrew5
Way too much filthy language! Some of the used words that hadn't been invented at that time. GOOD GRIEF I had to stop watching.Published 1 day ago by Amazon Customer
the story line has potential, but everything is ruined by the constant profanityPublished 1 day ago by Amazon Customer
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|Deadwood and western lit||
Any of Cormac McCarthy's Border Trilogy novels: All the Pretty Horses, The Crossing, and Cities of the Plain. McCarthy's masterpiece, Blood Meridian, makes Deadwood seem like a kindergarden coloring book primer.
Sep 12, 2007 by Pen Name | See all 2 posts
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