Spoilers ahead for tonight’s episode of Banshee, “You Can’t Hide from the Dead.”
First things first: In an episode that bristled with action and energy, the Camp Genoa job is a real white-knuckler, a 20-minute set piece that rivals Chayton’s siege of the Cadi from “Tribal.” The heist’s pacing is brisk, frenetic and immersive, thanks largely to Greg Yaitanes’s canny decision to use multiple POV and in situ cameras to convey the action as it unfolds. Indeed, almost the entire heist is staged like a corridor-filled Tom Clancy first-person shooter, with a bit of Splinter Cell‘s stealth thrown in for good measure. We as viewers aren’t simply along for the ride; we’re embedded with Hood and company as the job goes down. But no amount of careful planning can overcome Hood’s constant visions of Siobhan. That he is haunted by her tragic loss is understandable, but their timing instantly makes Hood a liability. Job nearly pays the price, too—something he’s not soon to forget.
The heist reaches peak intensity, however, when Stowe figures out their plan and comes gunning for them. There were points during their hasty retreat from the base that I believed Hood would not make it out alive. But what was truly frightening is the havoc Stowe wreaks inside the cramped confines of the truck, bucking and thrashing like the proverbial bull in the upended china shop. To say Hood and company barely escape is not an exaggeration, but, holy hell, thank god they did.
As amazing as the heist was, there are a few other important scenes worth noting.
Beneath her cool demeanor, Rebecca is a bundle of nerves—communicated by a quick succession of split-second jump cuts. She’s out of sorts, but she’s not out of the game, and neither are the Salvadorans, if they accept her offer. It’s an interesting direction for a girl raised Amish, this burgeoning drug trafficker, but Lili Simmons handles it well, giving the mercurial Rebecca an icy resolve. But there’s more to this than doing what she thinks is right for her uncle’s business; now, Rebecca is acting in her own best interests—and the Salvadorans are simply the first step towards her emancipation.
Even Proctor thinks it’s time for his troubled niece to finally be on her own, though this has less to do with avuncular pride and more to do with her becoming a liability to his personal and professional well-being. Much of this is due to Emily Lotus’s positive influence; she’s coaxing Kai out of his well-protected comfort zone, and he in turn is showing her the kind of genuine affection that was absent from her marriage to Brock.
As much as I like Emily, I fear she will somehow be the catalyst to Brock’s demise. This is not so much a reflection of her relationship with Proctor as it is about Brock’s desire to protect her from her new paramour. We all know Hood is out for blood after Siobhan’s murder, but this is a bit of misdirection; it’s Brock we should be more worried about, in my opinion.
Tonight’s emotional highlight belongs to Carrie and Gordon, in a brawl that’s both unexpected and brutal. We all know Carrie can handle herself in a fight, but Deva doesn’t know it, and her would-be attackers certainly underestimate her. Gordon, too, is no slouch when it comes to hand-to-hand combat. (Would one expect any less from a former Marine and current mayor of Banshee?) This scene is incredibly satisfying on a number of levels. One, it’s always good to see Carrie mix it up with someone who has their beatdown coming. Better still, Mrs. Hopewell doesn’t even break a sweat.
Two, it’s great to see Gordon strong, confident and fearless once more. Truly, he has come a long way this season, and now, he’s walking tall. Three, Deva needs a reminder of who’s really in charge. Sure, she hasn’t benefited from their absentee parenting, but Carrie and Gordon have staged the mother of all family interventions. Carrie’s calling their version of tough love “fun” is right on the nose. But it’s more than fun; their working as an effective team is a prelude to passion between two bruised, lost souls. It’s an outcome with no downside.
As for Chayton, he’s wounded and on the run as he makes his way to New Orleans to join up with a band of tribal outcasts. Wounded and fatigued, he has no hopes of ever making it that far—until he encounters a resourceful widow who’s quick to act as Florence Nightingale. She treats Chayton’s wounds and even feeds him, though why she’d willingly help a stranger with a gunshot wound almost defies belief. Almost. In the end, she pays for her kindness with her life. Aimee King hits the nail on the head when she tells Hood that the innocent boy Chayton once was has been replaced by a stone-cold killer.
Some closing thoughts:
True to his word, the FBI’s Captain Ferillo, who we met in last week’s “We Were All Someone Else Yesterday,” has filed a formal complaint against Hood for interfering in Chayton’s apprehension. Hood’s not nearly worried enough by this, much to Job’s chagrin. Any Feds worth their salt would want to bug Sugar’s bar if they want to uncover what Banshee’s sheriff does in his off time. It may be Hood’s one truly safe Haven, his refuge from prying eyes, but it’s not impenetrable.
After tonight’s episode, I can’t be the only one who thinks Banshee would make an amazing video game, am I?