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Fargo

  • Season 4
  • 11 episodes
  • Comedy
  • Drama
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Episode 1: Welcome to the Alternate Economy

Summary

New series. The head of an African American crime syndicate goes to war with the Italian mafia in Kansas City, Missouri in the 1950s and an uneasy truce between two factions is threatened by an untimely death. Irrepressible nurse Oraetta Mayflower attends to a dying patient, Loy Cannon trades safety for power, while the Smutny family's financial woes forces its members into making a dangerous deal. Chris Rock and Jessie Buckley star.

Review

After decades of gang warfare in Kansas City (we’re told every new group of immigrants that had “just got off the boat” would challenge the crime syndicate that was currently in power) in 1950 a fragile alliance is forged between the Italian and African American factions.

Noah Hawley’s ongoing crime anthology has a slow start but stick with it. It has the Coen brothers’ trademark black humour, it’s slick and even the violent shoot-outs are beautifully filmed, so it’s attracted an impressive cast including Chris Rock, Jessie Buckley and Ben Whishaw. Hawley has also widened its small-town criminal premise to encompass American society’s attitude to immigrants and their version of the American dream.

How to watch

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Details

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Credits

Cast

rolename
Loy CannonChris Rock
Oraetta MayflowerJessie Buckley
Josto FaddaJason Schwartzman
Rabbi MilliganBen Whishaw
Ethelrida Pearl SmutneyEmyri Crutchfield
Thurman SmutneyAndrew Bird
Dibrell SmutneyAnji White
Leon BittleJeremie Harris
Lemuel CannonMatthew Delamere

All episodes

  • Episode 1

    Welcome to the Alternate Economy

    Summary

    New series. The head of an African American crime syndicate goes to war with the Italian mafia in Kansas City, Missouri in the 1950s and an uneasy truce between two factions is threatened by an untimely death. Irrepressible nurse Oraetta Mayflower attends to a dying patient, Loy Cannon trades safety for power, while the Smutny family's financial woes forces its members into making a dangerous deal. Chris Rock and Jessie Buckley star.

    Review

    After decades of gang warfare in Kansas City (we’re told every new group of immigrants that had “just got off the boat” would challenge the crime syndicate that was currently in power) in 1950 a fragile alliance is forged between the Italian and African American factions.

    Noah Hawley’s ongoing crime anthology has a slow start but stick with it. It has the Coen brothers’ trademark black humour, it’s slick and even the violent shoot-outs are beautifully filmed, so it’s attracted an impressive cast including Chris Rock, Jessie Buckley and Ben Whishaw. Hawley has also widened its small-town criminal premise to encompass American society’s attitude to immigrants and their version of the American dream.

    How to watch

    Loading

    Streaming

    Details

    Formats
    Colour

    Credits

    Cast

    rolename
    Loy CannonChris Rock
    Oraetta MayflowerJessie Buckley
    Josto FaddaJason Schwartzman
    Rabbi MilliganBen Whishaw
    Ethelrida Pearl SmutneyEmyri Crutchfield
    Thurman SmutneyAndrew Bird
    Dibrell SmutneyAnji White
    Leon BittleJeremie Harris
    Lemuel CannonMatthew Delamere

Review

After a lengthy recap that’s like a roll call of the dead (well, there have been a confusing number of murders, double-crosses and side-plots along the way), the gang war in Kansas City is finally over for bosses Josto (Jason Schwartzman) and Loy (Chris Rock). Perhaps unsurprisingly neither of them is the winner. “Hasn’t there been enough killing?” one of them asks. Apparently not.

While the story arc of this series has been rather sprawling and some of its monologues a little wordy, its production values and period detail have been exceptional. I know it goes out late at night, but do try to watch until the bitter end as there’s an intriguing update on Satchel.

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