Damnation (S01E02) “Of Doom”

The battle for a good wage continues as the town deals with the aftermath of seeing Seth’s message at the end of the last episode when he nailed Sam Riley’s body to the door of the bank.  The sign “Who’s side are you on?” is the question everyone’s asking themselves as we dig deeper into this struggle and find out more about what really’s going on in this sleepy little town.

We meet more of the players, including Martin Eggers Hyde, PhD, who owns most of the banks that own the farms in the town, and he’s the reason Creely’s come to town.  As we find out more of what was in Creely’s letter, we learn that he’s sent to stop the uprising of the farmers in what Martin calls, a foreign invasion of our culture as they called union’s at the time.

The reporter, DL Sullivan, digs deeper into the union story, trying to uncover who killed Sam.  We find out where the townspeople’s allegiances lie as he interviews them for his novel.  After all, that’s why he’s out in the hick town to begin with, to earn his literary stripes just like Hemingway did.  To be fair, back in the 30s, I’m sure that sentiment was still original.

Creely and the Sheriff have a standoff in the middle of the town when Bessie (played by the irrepressable Chasten Harmon), Creely’s whore and basically his secretary, using her to do some ‘undercover’ work and as his eyes and ears in the town.  We find out Creely can’t read and is using her to help with that.  Considering her profession, and the fact that she’s half black, half white (we find out later in the episode she’s the Sheriff’s bastard) she’s one of the most accomplished women in the town, especially for the times.  Each time she’s on screen, I’m more impressed by her sheer take no prisoners attitude.

The other women in this show are just as impressive, and for this time period, very unusual.  Seth’s wife, Amelia, (played by Sara Jones) is the brains behind the revolution, writing the pamphlets used under a guise.  There’s a female assassin down in Kentucky, who’s killing off strike leaders one by one.  I love that this story doesn’t just focus on the men’s side, but the women are equal in basically every way if not more important and essential to the story.

As the episode ends, we find out who fired on the strikers at the church and Seth again does what he does best:  killing.  We start the episode with him washing the blood away from his last kill and end it with him killing again.  Every time Seth kills, there seems to be the sign of the cross nearby.  It’ll be intriguing to find out why and what (besides the obvious) symbolism that holds for Seth.  We also found out, courtesy of his brother, a little more about his past and find out he’s killed more than just those against the strike.  Creely confronts Amelia about that but she doesn’t flinch from the truth, being the kind of woman she is.

Let me know what you think of the episode.  What do you like about the show?  Not like about it?  Are you going to keep watching it?  Be sure to comment and let’s discuss.

 

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