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RightNation.US: Who's Watching Hell on Wheels Tonight? - RightNation.US

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Bog Hollywood's ZACHARY LEEMAN sure is:


If you are anything like me then you long for these films and these sensibilities. The Western genre is thought to be mostly dead today with an occasional "3:10 to Yuma" or "Appaloosa" to convince us otherwise. "Hell on Wheels” has flown under the radar, and it’s time to give this puppy a chance now that it's entering its second season. It’s a perfect show for Western lovers and conservatives alike. It hits all the beats a good Western needs to hit.

I'll be watching, too. I enjoyed the first season even if I wish they would refrain from gratuitous smut. I was afraid they would resort to typical the anachronisms and cliches that usually make modern TV Westerns unwatchable. But they didn't. Instead, they made it dark and gritty. I don't like dark and gritty in and of itself, but it fits the storyline, which is compelling. A former Confederate officer and plantation owner seeks revenge for the rape and killing of his wife.

They came close to falling into danger with the backstory on the hero's wife. She convinced him to free his slaves a year before the war started. This could have ended up as just a convenient device so you don't hate the character, but he's no politically correct modern. He's pretty messed up, and that makes him dangerous.

Whoever's writing this has a pretty keen sense of human nature. My favorite development is the preacher's arc. He's one of those do-gooder Social Gospel types out there trying to save the Indians not from sin but from backwardsness. And he neglects the family right in front of him like those types tend to do.

Hip Hop star, Common, does a great job of portraying a former slave with literary gifts he's afraid to display. If I knew he was a rapper before seeing the pilot, I might have watched his performance too closely. As it happened, he came off as understandably angry former slave trying to exist with dignity.

Again, I don't care for all the smut that supposedly followed the railroad building. I know it happened, but there's got to be a better way of showing it without showing it. It's not exactly rated R kind of stuff, but it's too much. Other bad stuff went on, but they don't show that. So, I don't give the writers a pass for just being "authentic". Although, I will admit that they don't glamorize anything.

I wouldn't recommend this program for most people. But it's not without its redeeming qualities. As entertainment, it's high quality and as social commentary, there's fodder for much discussion.

Plus, my mom sure likes it.

My Mind is Clean

8 Comments On This Entry

Have it sceduled for dvr. The ultraviolent preview got me. Besides, it leads into Breaking Bad.
:wave: I have the DVR set, I have 6 hours of TV to watch in two hours tonight. Fortunately most of the shows are re run over night so I can tape them and watch later.

You asked about the writers, they come from Merritt Island Florida, they've been in the paper a couple of times.
DVR'd. Will watch it at a later date this week with a buddy
The first season is on Netflix Instant watch. I'm on the 7th episode and it seems rather PC , especially the Reverend's lines. His delivery is so much like these old liberals I find all the time up here in the SF BayArea.

BlondInfidel, on 13 August 2012 - 12:04 AM, said:

The first season is on Netflix Instant watch. I'm on the 7th episode and it seems rather PC , especially the Reverend's lines. His delivery is so much like these old liberals I find all the time up here in the SF BayArea.

Ah, but you're assuming the rev is a sympathetic character. Just wait.
I just watched episode 12. I see!
I recorded it and it is a good show. However, there to many characters. One must really stay connected to understand what is going on.

BlondInfidel, on 14 August 2012 - 01:44 AM, said:

I just watched episode 12. I see!

Typical Progressive, eh? :lol:
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