Banshee season 3 episode 7 review: You Can’t Hide From The Dead

Banshee is exhilarating and inventive in a way that so few other television shows are, as this week's episode proves...

This review contains spoilers.

3.7 You Can’t Hide From The Dead

I don’t know whether it’s a symptom of Banshee being at the forefront of Cinemax’s original programme development, but its willingness to experiment and play with new styles on a weekly basis has always been one of the most exciting things about it. From Hood and Carrie’s dreamlike visit to the house they might have had in season two, to the opening credits unfurling over Proctor’s drug development and the episode-long heist of just a couple of weeks ago, it is always thrilling when the show does something a little different. And while most of this week’s episode was business as usual, the fact that the last third became something of a crossover between Chronicle and a first person shooter, and furthermore the fact that it worked was exhilarating in a way so few other television shows are.

It didn’t hurt that the rest of the episode wasn’t too shabby either. Aside from one badass fight scene (which I’ll get to in a moment), the episode did a nice job of consolidating and furthering the lingering conflicts and threads that have run throughout the season. It seems as though Proctor may be inching toward something of a redemption arc, between the death of his mother and the gentle influence of Emily Lotus. Seeing him arrive to pray with his family was a simple and touching moment and the vulnerability on his face as they finally accepted him felt oddly vindicating. As entertaining as it is to watch Proctor wreak havoc, we’re starting to see a side to him that has not yet been explored; the person who might genuinely want to change.

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The question, then, is just how long it will last. Brock is none too pleased about the fact that his ex-wife is in bed with the crime lord, and the fact that Rebecca is going behind her uncle’s back, no doubt driven by seeing him with Emily last week, promises all sorts of unpleasant happenings in the Proctor household in episodes to come. My guess is that however this plays out, it will shatter whatever tentative steps toward absolution Proctor has made. Will Emily die? Almost definitely, and while she’s more of a plot device than a character, it will be sad if only because I really like Proctor. But the idea of him and Rebecca being pitted against each other, and the subtle implication that she may just plan to usurp him, promises too much juicy stuff to come for me to be all that upset.

Elsewhere we saw some big new strides made in the restoration of Carrie and Gordon’s relationship; a development that I can’t believe I like as much as I do. While I’d be lying if I said I was totally sold on the derelict house full of violent, partying teenagers who seem to live there full time, seeing these previously terrible parents team up to take down the thugs and get Deva out of there was the kind of fun, satisfying little moment that Banshee does so well. It was the first time that I realised Gordon might actually be a decent match for Carrie, and as unconventional as it was it was almost a nice bonding moment for the family. It’s typically Banshee that a moment of parental concern manifests as a violent fight scene, and hopefully it’s enough to prove to Deva that her parents aren’t so hopeless. Maybe then she’ll stop whining for five minutes.

But all of that, while perfectly good stuff in its own right, pales in comparison to this week’s major set piece. I have to admit I was a little dubious about the format at first; it seemed like it would be more confusing and annoying than anything, but I was very quickly proved wrong. Clever editing kept the action clear and fast moving, and by the time the soldiers swarmed en-masse toward the armoury I was on the edge of my seat. It was another week where I was far too engrossed to take any notes, and with Job’s trepidation in mind I did wonder if we were about to lose another lead so soon after Siobhan, whose ghostly appearances certainly weren’t helping. Still, it was nice to see the show use the heist as a wake-up call for Hood, having him ignore her ghost at the end as he realises that he can’t dwell on her if he wants to survive. Character development dressed up in crazy action; it’s Banshee at its absolute best.

Meanwhile, Chayton did appear intermittently throughout the episode, in a subplot that seemed only designed to reiterate how ruthless he is. It wasn’t really necessary, but given all the good stuff this week it’s hard to begrudge it too much, really. More than anything it was a set up for next week; Hood and Brock’s pursuit of Chayton, which looks to be all kinds of glorious. After that there’s only two episodes left in the season. I honestly have no idea what to expect in the weeks to come, but after such a consistently excellent run, I’ve long since learned that that’s how I like this show. 

Read Gabriel’s review of the previous episode, We Were All Someone Else Yesterday, here.

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