Banshee Season Two Blu-ray Review
(In a deep, dramatic voice) – “Last season…on BANSHEE.”
A recently paroled convict makes his way to the small town of Banshee, Pennsylvania where he has learned his former lady love has relocated. With a new name. And a husband and kids. While stopping in at the local watering hole he is caught in the middle of a violent shoot out. All of the participants are killed, including Lucas Hood, who was about to become the new appointed sheriff of Banshee. In an amazing string of circumstances, NO ONE in the town has ever met Lucas Hood. Our convict assumes his identity and soon finds himself hip deep in small town battles dealing with, but not limited to, the local Native American reservation and the former Amish gone bad gangster Kai Proctor (Ulrich Thomsen). As the year season progressed we learned that the con’s gal-pal (Milicevic) was the daughter of a major bad guy, a Ukrainian gentleman known as the Rabbit (Ben Cross). The season ended with Rabbit showing up in Banshee, kidnapping his grandson and facing off with Sheriff Hood and company.
Season two continues the adventures of Lucas Hood (Starr), his deputies and those whacky Banshee townsfolk. Things begin to go wrong when it is learned that Rabbit is not as dead as presumed. Unfortunately, after the kidnapping Rabbit’s daughter has a lot of explaining to do to her husband, who is the town’s mayor. He tosses her out of the house. Things go from bad to worse when young Jason Hood (Harrison Thomas) shows up in town and can’t help but wonder why his pop doesn’t look the same. It seems that junior also has skeletons in his closet. Plus, to make things interesting, Hood, the girlfriend and Job (an amazing Hoon Lee), an associate from years past, begin pulling side jobs to earn a little spending money. It’s amazing all of this can happen in one tiny town.
“How come everybody with an assault rifle ends up in this town,” one of Hood’s deputies asks him. If anything, BANSHEE is over-caffeinated. Surely at least one day a week there’s a little peace and quiet. As the season’s story arc progresses we learn more about why “Hood” was in prison. We also learn more about the pasts of the people around him. The action is over the top but the outstanding performances by the cast never make you disbelieve the situation on screen. All of the stars are at the top of their game, each one making their character strong and believable. Hoon Lee, as Job, is amazing. I think I would pay to see him read a phone book. I can’t help but hope that when this series finally ends the producers find a way to give him a spin-off. The supporting cast and “guests” are equally good, with Ben Cross especially nasty as the Rabbit.
Technically the show is brilliant. Smartly directed, sharply edited and full of some of the most amazing stunt work I’ve ever seen in either television or film. It’s Emmy Award for outstanding special visual effects was justly deserved. Now let’s work on getting Hoon Lee nominated, academy!
Video: Presented in its original 1:78.1 aspect ratio, “Banshee” is presented in an almost noir’ format. Colors are dark and muted while the image is crisp and solid.
Audio: Available in DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, the film capitalizes on its loud explosions and multiple gun battles. Everything is cleanly delivered and the bombs and blasts will shake your television set to it’s foundation.
Like most Blu-rays, this series is packed with some fun, if not sometimes nerve-challenging extras. Each sequence begins with clues to that particular episode and half the fun is guessing what is real and what is a goose chase.
Episode Commentaries: There are seven different commentaries featured, featuring a member of the cast or crew for each specific episode.
Inside the Title Sequence: Each title sequence is presented so that the viewer can click on highlighted items and read some behind-the-scenes information.
Banshee Origins (44:23): Like the first season, these are (12) live-action short films that give a little insight into the characters.
Conversation Between Olek and the Albino (2:19): A short film concerning two of the prisoners “Hood” left behind. The Albino was Hood’s nemesis while behind bars and early season 3 clues hint to him showing up once more.
Zoomed In (16:39): Eight mini-featurettes that aren’t very interesting due to their short running time.
Deleted Scenes (7:12): Short clips that really don’t add anything to the story.