16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
The best western ever made.,
This review is from: Deadwood: Complete HBO Season 1  [DVD] (DVD)
In truth, the title to this review actually does the entire series a bit of an injustice. It is a little unfair to apply Deadwood to a particular genre when in fact, it's probably one of the best programmes ever made.
All of the performances in it are perfectly judged, most notably that of Keith Carradine as the weary and tired Wild Bill Hickok who if he doesn't have an out and out death wish, is almost certainly exhausted with having to live up to the legend of his name and Ian McShane as the ruthless and profane owner of the Gem saloon, Al Swearengen. Swearengen is one of the truly great TV characters. A dangerous and violent man, but also one who for all of his wickedness, also has a gentler side. It's well hidden and he doesn't show it very often, but occassionally he does and then you are forced to re-evaluate your oponion of him.
In fact, there are too many excellent performances to name them all. Every time you watch Deadwood, you will find a new favourite or a new villain.
On top of the excellent acting performances is the superb set, showing Deadwood as a dirty, squalid and hazardous place. A town in which life counts for almost nothing and where anything can be bought, provided you have the collateral and that doesn't always mean money. In short, probably what the real Deadwood would have been like.
The dialogue is not for the faint hearted. Profanity is used in almost every sentence, but anybody who complains about it is missing the point. The producers of this show have went for authenticity, and in a town where you can pan for gold, drink, gamble, whore, get high and kill all in the same day, the people who live in it aren't likely to be too bothered about their P's and Q's. Bad language was and still is a part of everyday life, and in a town with no law it's a fair bet the language would have been pretty bad.
If you haven't already seen Deadwood, get a copy of the first season and see what you've been missing. The sooner the second season becomes available, the better.