This modern cowboy drama comes from Alan Ball, the creator of True Blood (he left the show to concentrate on this) and is co-produced by House’s Greg Yaintes.
Anthony Starr is the ex-con who takes on the identity of the sheriff of Banshee after Lucas Hood is killed the day before his job as sheriff. In this town happens to live Ana, the girl Lucas went to prison to save after they were on the run from her chilling Russian crime boss who is played by Ben Cross. Ana has a new life with kids, a DA husband and the new name of Carrie but it’s not the end of the relationship between the former lovers. It’s their relationship that is the first layer to be peeled of as we slowly learn about Lucas’ past life as a criminal through flashbacks. It doesn’t give you all the answers to his past, instead drip feeds you them which keeps you watching.
Lucas is the least of Banshee’s problems as much like True Blood the small sleepy town is full of inhabitants with many a secret. Kai Procter is Hood’s biggest nemesis throughout season 1, an ex-member of the neighbouring Amish community, he is the centre to all the town crime and corruption.
This show is riddled with clichéd writing and characters whose development involves getting more and more corrupt.Frankie Faison’s bartender plays the wise old voice of reason while Ana’s children are the punky rebel daughter and cheeky younger brother. One of the only characters that stands out for not being a cliché is Hon Lee’s cross dressing computer tech who comes from the Tyra Banks school of sass.
The fight scenes are long and the sex is gratuitous and come across as unnecessary and overly cartoon-ish. It isn’t particularly thought provoking, nor does it dissect human lives, instead it plays on the Breaking Bad idea of supporting the anti-heroes that would be the villains in most other shows.
If you can get over the premise then this show is entertaining enough. Sit back, turn off your brain and enjoy the non-stop fist punching and action of the first series.
Season 1 is released on DVD on September 2nd. Look out for Season 2 on Sky Atlantic in early 2014.