Last night I watched three episodes of Deadwood in a row because they are just so good. Shirtless Bullock! A new whore house! Al in his onesie! So for my review/recap I’m grouping together “Deep Water,” “Reconnoitering the Rim” (basically the Brom episode), and “Here was a Man” (the Bill Hickok episode).
The gradual demise of Bill Hickok is a storyline that runs throughout these 3 episodes, ending with his climatic demise in episode 4. It’s great, but also melancholic to see Bill descend into depression and ultimately accept his inevitable death. Keith Carradine is wonderful as Bill, giving him a kind of awkward charisma. It’s too bad he couldn’t have been on the show longer. What I love about Deadwood (other than the profanity) is the attention paid to small details. I think there is just one shot of Bill’s hand shaking. That’s all that is needed to establish that maybe Bill has lost his touch, maybe Bullock is a faster draw than he is. Bill becomes tired of living. He can’t seem to live a normal life, so he just wants to play poker. I can’t really blame him. It’s sad for Charlie and Jane though.
Jane (Robin Weigert) is also starting to develop into an interesting character. At first she just comes off as a drunk, profanity spitting woman who wants to be a man. But different sides of her start to appear as the show goes on. Jane is shown to be caring and compassionate, especially in regards to the orphaned little girl. She’s also show to possess some femininity, which shows mostly in her interactions with Bill. He’s the only man to treat her with respect and she loves him for it. And then there was the really good scene between her and Al Swearengen. Al busts into the Doc’s cabin, threatens Jane and basically does what he wants. All the while Jane just stands there blubbering, threatening him, but immobilized. The whole time I was just thinking, “what the fuck is her problem, knock him out already!” I thought she was incredibly dumb. But later on it is revealed that Jane has been raped by men her whole life, and so when she was alone and confronted with a man as imposing Al, she snapped. She was immobilized by fear and her traumatic past. She captures the audience’s sympathy after this. She’s shown to be a three dimensional character. Although the way she mumbles most of her lines still irritates me.
Total instances of “Cocksucker”: 17, “Titty”: 1, “Pussy”: 3, “Cunt”: 8, “Asshole”: 1.
• Alma is annoying. Go home to New York, literally everyone is telling you to do so (Bill, the Doc). Why the heck would a woman want to stay in a town full of dirty, misogynistic men?
• Whenever a murder or something suspicious happens in Deadwood Bullock gets a look on his face that says “I must investigate.” It’s kind of laughable. You’re not a sheriff anymore, Bullock.
• Bullock also somehow gets involved in every murder and is always at the following funeral. It’s funny because the viewer can see how much he loathes listening to the Reverend every time.
• Damn Bullock is sexy. Especially when he’s sweaty.
• Idiot Brom goes looking for gold like an idiot. Brom idiotically trusts Dan and Al. Idiotic Brom takes a tumble he never gets up from. RIP Brom.
• Al and Bullock finally meet and instantly have a hate on for each other.
• Tom Mason (Nick Offerman) runs around naked, screaming incomprehensibly. Still hilarious.
• “Oooh, what’s your time of the month?” Al to the Doc.
• The single tear down Dan’s face as he goes to the Doc’s to kill the little girl (which doesn’t happen). It was effective, not cheesy.
• The new clean whore house! Finally, some people who look like they actually bathe more than once a year.
• Bill’s “cunt” rant to Jack. Hahahaha, I love Keith Carradine’s delivery. Deadpan. Jack doesn’t even know what’s going on.
• “Do not repeat back to me what I just said in different fuckin’ words!” E.B. obviously does not comprehend this and does it again. I wish Al would kill him, but I guess E.B. has his uses. He’s fun to hate.
• Alma: “A community such as this attracts a certain kind of man.” The kind that don’t bathe? (I’m just joking) (But seriously, if the Bella Union can do it, why can’t everyone else?)
• E.B. proclaims he is “loyal as a damn dog.” Saying something like that so obviously means the opposite.
• E.B. tells Al “short of burning the town down, you gotta trust someone.” The only wise thing to come out of E.B.’s mouth.
• Trixie and Al’s weird, abusive, but fascinating relationship. Do they love each other in a twisted way? At least he hasn’t beaten her for a few episodes.
• Not very much of Bullock in these episodes, but I think that will change soon.
• How did Jack get a gun and a new suit? Did Al or someone else pay him to kill Bill? (Haha, kill Bill).
• Bill just happens to put on his fancy red sash on the day he’s going to die. Bill dies in style.
• My mother and I didn’t believe that someone like Bill would sit with his back to the door while playing poker. But this is historically accurate. In real life it was the only seat available when Bill got there and no one would trade with him.
• Why the heck is someone suddenly riding around waving an Indian head? Wild Bill just died! Have some respect. But seriously, why?!
• Bullock’s devastation over Bill’s death. No words are spoken, but his pain is evident. Great acting by Timothy Olyphant.