Treme “Sunset On Louisianne” Review (4×04)

23 Dec

treme-season-4Treme is about life and death situations, but not in the way that comes to your mind first. It’s a show about regular people living regular lives, and although it may all seem superfluous, it in fact just injects a sense of realism into the proceedings.  This season doesn’t feel so much as leftovers as much as more steps in the characters’ lives, and this episode in particular does a nice job of exploring ideas of legacy and accomplishments contrasting with inevitability; our characters will move on, but they desperately want to leave a mark.

For example, David goes on about his legacy to Nelson, who, to his credit, takes the nightclub suggestion to Liguori; Nelson is now just as sympathetic as the rest of the characters on the show, and it’s to the writers’ credit that this is the case. Anyway, Liguori essentially shuts down Davis’s dreams, reminding us of the choke hold that those in power have on us. It’s the same for Colson, someone who will inevitably have to retire even as a new wave of people are pushing through. It’s too late; everyone’s too late. Annie’s caught between her past and her future, but she’ll inevitably end up having to leave if she wants to jump start her career.

Even though this is a show that is constantly moving–life is constantly moving, after all–this episode deals in endings: the ending of Antoine’s school program, the ending of Annie’s band, the ending of Davis’s dreams, and the ending of Albert’s life.

Of that last point, Clarke Peters is brilliant in this role (as well as those around him); it is truly heartbreaking to see such a strong-willed person come to an end like this, but man, it is a pleasure to see such commitment to character here. The father-son “passing of the torch” relationship is excellently played out by both Peters and Brown, and the way the show’s integrated LaDonna into the relationship is a marvel; that last scene in particular is wonderful. Chief Albert Lambreaux will die on his deathbed, but his legacy will live on.



-The “Sing, Sing, Sing” sequence is excellent.

-“I wrote it for you.”

-I like the parallels between Davis and Nelson, with Nelson driving a pricey car and Davis on a bicycle.

-Only one more left. I’m said.

Photo credit: HBO, Treme

2 Responses to “Treme “Sunset On Louisianne” Review (4×04)”

  1. Greg December 24, 2013 at 11:29 pm #

    The Big Chief’s death was disappointing to me because he represented both past and present New Orleans. The tradition, the pageantry and life experiences all rolled up in to one person. Although the torch has been passed, I feel as if it happened a little too soon. Clarke Peters was born to portray “The Big Chief”. So much so that it broke my heart to see him go. He was my favorite character. Who can we now look to represent the old school values and wisdom as he did especially during the scene where he rode home from the doctor’s office with his daughter?. I will truly miss Clarke Peters. GP in Alabama

    • polarbears16 December 25, 2013 at 6:50 am #

      I understand that, and I think the time constraints of the final season may have rushed most of the storylines, but I think one of the beauties of the show is portraying life as it is; his life may have ended, but his spirit lives on.

      I sometimes wonder if the show should’ve ended with him, strong-willed and determined, preparing to fight the cancer at the end of last season. Then, I do realize that it’s a pleasure watching this character continue to develop, even if it’s not always a pleasure. I agree, Clarke Peters is magnificent in the role, but I do think his death was handled well.

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