Updated: Mar 10
I find it hard to recommend Banshee to anyone, despite it being one of my favourite TV shows of all time. It's a serious guilty pleasure thing for me. If someone walks in the room during one of the awkwardly choreographed shaky-cam fight scenes, or any of the multitudinous overlong sex scenes, I almost feel a need to explain myself.
The show is shot in Charlotte, North Carolina, with the production featuring plenty of high production value set pieces and somewhat impressive special effects for a TV show of the time. The cinematography is often quite standard-feeling, though little flares of creativity and fun come through often enough to keep you visually engaged.
The show's visual sins only reveal themselves, in my opinion, in the numerous torture/flashback/breakdown scenes. In all of which we are treated to a horrid mix of shallow DOF shaky footage of Anthony Starr covered in blood, and horribly colour corrected flashbacks of earlier scenes.
My favourite character is Job, whose hacking antics bring him to a near anime-level standoff against the US government's best hacker. Job hacks the guy so hard that the computers all think the government hacker IS Job, he is then instantly hunted down by every government on earth in recompense of Job's cybercrimes. The scene ends as Job leaves the room and the government hacker screams in a chair. Its the best thing I've ever seen and it makes the whole show worth it.
Perhaps carrying me through the show was it's engrossing but frustrating loop of cliff-hanger endings. I can't think of another show which stuck with me so effectively between episodes, or one which has stuck around in my mind so long after finishing it. Please help me. I can't stop thinking about it.
Thanks for listening to me talk about this, it makes it easier to say it out loud yaknow? Ever since watching this show I've felt an intense urge to tell someone else, similar to how a cordyceps-infested ant feels an urge to climb to a high spot and release spores into the wind. I think the point I wanted to make with this blog post, but never bothered to begin to express was; I miss TV shows from before, back when they were kind of crap, before Breaking Bad ruined everything.
This piece was written by Mor Media intern Joe, who specialises in the tech side of film and media.
Banshee is available to watch on NOW TV.