Last night I watched the second episode of Banshee on Cinemax and reaffirmed that this is definitely one of the very best new series on either network or basic and premium cable channels. This should be no surprise because a key creative force behind this show is Alan Ball who has achieved remarkable standing for the older HBO series Six Feet Under and True Blood, not to mention an Academy Award for American Beauty. This man knows quality. If you appreciate great action, terrific fight and sex scenes, as well as creative writing and sharp dialogue, then Banshee should be on you must see TV list.
Some of the actors may seem familiar, but the star Antony Starr is a newcomer. He is one reason why women, not just men, may also get hooked on Banshee, the name of the town in Amish country, because he is a very, very handsome guy. He plays a tough guy who has just left prison and through a strange series of events has become sheriff of a county in Pennsylvania, even as he is being pursued by angry criminals with an ax to grind from previous actions in his pre-prison life.
Somewhat more familiar is the female lead, Ivana Milicevic; she is a great reason for guys to watch the show, because she is gorgeous and sexy in a more unconventional way. She plays the love of sheriff Lucas Hood’s life from his former life who is now an upstanding citizen of Banshee with a husband and kids. She was his partner in crime. But the sheriff is not about to accept her new reality. There are nice visual hints that she, like him, has incredible fighting skills; so I look forward to action scenes with her.
Supporting actors that play great characters with much skill include Ulrich Thomsen as the major criminal boss of Banshee and surrounding territory who was brought up in the nearby Amish community. Is he ever mean. I loved the scene where he cut off the finger of one of his underlings who screwed up and flicked the finger to his dog.
Another great character is Sugar Bates played by Frankie Faison, who runs a bar and befriends the sheriff and knows the truth that he really is not the guy he pretends to be. Perhaps the greatest new character on this or any show is Job played by Hoon Lee, an Asian transvestite in absolutely stunning makeup and costumes. He is a computer expert who is a friend of the sheriff from his former life and assists in making his sheriff identity theft hold up under scrutiny.
Don’t miss out on this new series. I bet you will watch reruns of the shows because of all the visual pleasures.