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Banshee “Evil for Evil” Review (2×08)

1 Mar

3ee3cdd67d5c4a35cad3608f75f7e90cAt what cost?

That’s the question that’s constantly asked in “Evil for Evil”, quite possibly the best episode of Banshee this season. It’s an hour of genuinely hard-hitting emotion that’s simultaneously thrilling and heartbreaking.

Lucas Hood is a guy who’s willing to use whatever means necessary to get what he wants, and while he’s certainly helped take down his fair share of baddies, he’s also left behind a wave of uncertainty and moral dilemmas, a wave of detriment that pulls everyone down to the level he operates at. The cold open here is a nice way of illustrating the fact that people are catching on and attempting to distance themselves from his influence–Carrie recognizes exactly how dangerous he is and that he can’t be involved with her family–and that idea extends throughout the rest of the episode.

It’s Hood vs. Proctor, and what’s interesting is that even Proctor underestimates just how low Hood’s willing to go, simultaneously setting him up and placing Julia’s life in danger. Hood’s always been loose with the law, but the circumstances are entirely different here; it’s a personal vendetta that he’s taking personal enjoyment in, but he’s using Proctor’s reputation as an excuse. I mean, the guy certainly deserves to be locked up, but at the expense of what? Siobhan calls Hood out on it, and earlier on, so does Sugar. People are getting caught in the crossfire, and there’s a very real fear that permeates the town.

Of course, the biggest impact is on Emmett, who, one episode ago, was a pretty generic character. The same can be said about Sharpe, a seemingly one-off villain. Yet, the show dives into this storyline with such force and tension, thoroughly investing its efforts into conveying Emmett’s internal struggle and back story; he’s been tested all his life, and this is the final straw. Sharpe’s detestable, but there’s a human element to him that places Emmett’s situation into a new context. He unloads on the skinheads, blinded by revenge, but clearly seeing the implications of his actions. It’s a thrilling sequence, but it’s predominantly heartbreaking: Emmett doesn’t gain anything from his actions, and while there’s a release of emotions, I wouldn’t exactly call it a moment of catharsis, either. He’s lost everything, and Hood very well may be next.

And so, his badge is turned in, with the final shot of the episode wordlessly summing up the episode. It’s a powerful image, and it foreshadows the hurt to come while reminding us of what was left behind.

GRADE: A-

OTHER THOUGHTS:

-“I used the computer.”

-Nice inter-cutting of scenes in this episode. It’s been shaky before, but here, it’s purposeful and effective.

-C’mon, do we really need Rabbit?

Photo credit: Cinemax, Banshee

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