Saturday, June 10, 2017

TV review - "Frontier - Season 1" (2016) ****

Canadian history is a hell of a lot more interesting than it generally gets credit for - this is a bloody look at the battles faced by the Hudson Bay Company in the seventeenth century, trying to keep its monopoly while dealing with a renegade trapper.

The HBC is still going. I wonder what they think of this depiction of their company - ruthless, manipulative, prone to torture and murder. Maybe they're too polite to mention anything.

There's strong acting - Jason Momosa is the star and Katie McGrath was the only other actor I recognised but everyone was pretty good (they're mostly Canadians, I think). Alun Armstrong is a scary villain. I liked the period detail and the historical background was fresh.

The baddies are the British and the goodies tend to be Indians, women, Irish and Scots. I felt the writers occasionally overused "person being killed" as a device to get some jolt out of the viewer instead of developing character and theme. And a lot of stories felt like set up. But it gripped me and I enjoyed it.

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