I can handle dark, intense content when it's called for, but a lot of shows seem to spend more time creating deliberately disturbing images and themes than crafting a story, and I weary of them quickly. I was a little worried Taboo might fall into that category, but three episodes in it's proven to be a winner. Any liberties taken exaggerating the cruelty or coarseness of the times are handled in a way Dickens would approve of, but it doesnt' degenerate into being quirky for the sake of quirky. The violence portrayed is just as frank and gruesome as necessary to convey the reality and no more. Most of all I am loving the language and the way the story is being spooled out gradually rather than being dumped in the viewer's lap, yet I never feel lost or confused. Nevertheless, I ended up rewatching some of this with my husband and was able to put together a thing or two I hadn't noticed the first time, so I'm glad I bought this season on Amazon for easier commercial-free viewing. Tom Hardy is so good I'm reduced to using the "force of nature" cliche. Casting is generally very good. I've always liked Oona Chaplin and she's well used here. Jonathan Pryce is great as always, and I was delighted to see David Hayman as Brace. The only thing that's taken me out of it a little is Mark Gattis as George IV, mostly because the prosthetics are distracting. His character seems relatively unimportant to the story, so going to makeup extremes to turn a normal-looking actor into a bloated mess seems like excess. Maybe this will make more sense down the road, but it doesn't feel like the rest of the show.
Enjoyable for me at every level; fantastic time/place immersion, acting, dialogue, and not least the plot, which is promising to be very timely indeed. Not sure if Hardy has written other stories for stage, but if this is his first major project as writer and creator, never mind his incredible performance as Delaney, he's knocked it out of the park [cliche count=2]. He should be able to do anything he wants from here on out.
It's extremely dark and intimate. The environment the characters are living in is extremely brutal and the show does not shy away from the harshness of their reality. It's definitely intriguing. Tom Hardy plays his character with extreme grace and confidence. Every time he walks into a room, you are automatically drawn to him. He's gives the perfect mixture of man and primal instinct. Jonathan Pryce is amazing per always! You can help but love him even if he is the antagonist. At this point, there are so many possible paths this show can take, but each is intriguing and captivating! I'm definitely hooked and ready for the next episode. P.S. If you are visually 'sensitive' this show is not for you! Although I've only seen one episode, I can tell you this much, this show is not for the faint of heart.
Watched the first episode and I'm hooked. Dark and atmospheric, this show grabs by the shoulders and doesn't let go. Waiting for what is next! Also Tom Hardy brings a viscerally engaging performance.. Bravo!
Wasn't sure what I was watching at first. Starts out like a ferry man crossing the sea. But, it's Tom Hardy, so it must be good. After first episode, I was hooked. Gripping, mysterious, and it keeps you glued to the screen.
This production presupposes a good deal of historical knowledge of the geopolitics of the early 19th century in Europe and America. That isn't a criticism at all , just a fact. There is enough programming out there that presupposes and encourages ignorance. Characters speculate on the final negotiations between the young United States and Britain, including the Northern border of the U.S. and Canada. The depiction of Byronic costume, mores of the time, the grim fascination with Napoleon, the Romantic era exoticization of Africa , the more general production values -all just excellent, and I can't wait for the next episode. The Nootka trading post would have been convenient for the fabled Northwest Passage, a fact the show's antihero is counting on, so too the East India Company. A practical, economically viable passage never materialized, despite expeditions to find one. No one in the early 19th century would have known that, The calculation and limitless greed in evidence is thus ironic, but just as brutally fatal. Some respondents about this show have commented that it seems incoherent, but it really isn't. It is, in fact, brilliant historical fiction that holds up well under examination. If the show is to be faulted, it would be that the writers do not stoop to conquer. Some of us will find virtue in that.
This series was well written with interesting characters and plot line. There are multiple complex story lines going on which kept my interest throughout the series. I found the first one or two episodes to start out slow and the writers took their time in developing the plot. I am a huge Hardy fan and found myself forgetting that it was him playing the role of Delaney - a true sign of a great actor. Hardy has a unique ability to transform himself deeply into his characters. Delaney has several layers where you see a the goodness in him but also his emotional detachment to those that betray him. I particularly liked the development of Delaney and Lorna's relationship, they start out being at odds with each other but develop a sister-brother type love for each other. The only thing I did not like was some of the over-done prosthetics and makeup work of the Prince, I found it to not match the rest of the characters in the series. But overall, the setting and costume work was excellent and believable. I also found myself questioning Helga's makeup, was this an accurate portrayal of how prostitutes wore makeup? Lots of twists and turns in this story line, I hope they bring it back for another season.