Banshee Review: “Evil For Evil” (Episode 02.08)

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<i>Banshee</i> Review: &#8220;Evil For Evil&#8221; (Episode 02.08)

Kai Proctor is, for the time being, incarcerated. Helped out once again by the stripper who dallies with the crime lord, Hood was able to put him behind bars for a stretch. The charge: ownership of illegal weapons. A whole boatload of illegal weapons, stored in a secret room in Proctor’s basement.

It’s only a matter of time before the search warrant is invalidated—or the “confidential informant” found and killed—and Proctor is released. And then he will come after Hood, guns a-blazing and fists a-flying. For the moment, though, he’s gathering power and rage in a prison cell.

We move one step closer to the conflagration that will erupt in the last episode of this series, and likely leave Hood either in an iron lung or in hiding after his true identity is revealed. As we do, it’s like watching a pot of water boil. Little bubbles of incident keep rising up to the surface and popping.

There’s Siobhan finally confronting Hood when she realizes he may have a much darker past than she realized; Rebecca becoming an unwitting accomplice in Proctor’s bad deeds, as well as trying, in her fumbling way, to seduce her uncle; and Job uncovering the hiding place of Rabbit after his computer analyzes the files of Agent Racine. And there’s Hood, offersing to help protect Longshadow if they can work together on keeping Proctor behind bars.

The worst, and most unnecessary, plot bubble though involved Deputy Yawners. His poor pregnant wife, confronted by the skinheads who were shaken down in the prior episode, is used as a puppet for revenge. And with one swing of a fist and unfortunately placed boot, another female figure on the show is treated as a punching bag. A female character that, until this week, had never appeared on the show before.

As ever, I’m trying to give the show the benefit of the doubt. I hope that the climactic scene where Yawners takes out his anger on the trio of skinheads, sending them all to the hospital, is a commentary on violence. Something that the last episode of Breaking Bad did so well, making us complicit in this need for revenge and clean moral lines. For all its occasional gleams of intelligence, I feel like Banshee just wants us to get off on watching a man having his sternum broken by a fist wrapped in brass knuckles. As I’ve probably mentioned before, this is knuckle-dragging male fantasy in televised form. All it needs now is the occasional shot of a plate of cooked meat to complete the circle.

Robert Ham is a Portland-based freelance writer and regular contributor to Paste. You can follow him on Twitter.