I review the continuing BBC 2 period drama Peaky Blinders, as it reaches Episode 4 of 6.
So, this week had a mammoth amount of TV episodes hurled my way. Whilst most of you are thinking three in a week probably isn’t a lot, it is a lot for me – I don’t watch that much TV actually on the TV – normally it’s through the internet as I’m most of the shows involved have me playing catch-up on them (Case in point, Buffy the Vampire Slayer). And I was also ill this week, so the review of Peaky Blinders is going to come a day late.Also, there’ll be no comic reviews this week, for the same reason – although you can find coverage of Green Arrow #24 on The Founding Fields. But now with that out of the way, let’s kick off with Episode 4 of Peaky Blinders, as we reach past the middle act of the series with only two episodes remaining, it really does prove that it’s one of the best damn shows on TV at the moment, even if this episode may suffer from an unfortunate dip in quality – it’s still better than anything else (bar Orphan Black) that was on TV this week.
The acting still remains consistently good quality across the entire range, mainly thanks to not only what Cillian Murphy brings to the table as Tommy, but also Annabelle Wallis as Grace, and Sam Neil also delivers his finest scenes since his confrontation with Tommy in this episode, and whilst his character had become not as strong in the first few episodes, he’s certainly improving for the moment, as this sets Campbell back on track. Yes, the problems with the accents may be still there – but if you’ve stuck with Peaky Blinders thus so far I don’t think it’ll bother you that much.
It seems like the best scenes in the show are between Sam Neil and Cillian Murphy, as once again – this scene was played off very well as Inspector Campbell takes great pleasure in explaining down to the last detail the punishment he will take out on the Shelby family should Tommy not hand over the guns that set this whole series in motion by being stolen. The scene was really chilling, and it does go a great way into reminding audiences that perhaps the biggest danger that the Shelby family is up against is easily the forces of the law – especially when you consider that Grace has managed to move up the ranks inside Tommy’s family this episode – although I fear it will only be a matter of time before her role as a double agent is unmasked.
At least, for the moment – Tommy’s seemingly dealt with one enemy, in the form of the Lee Family. From the opening sequence involving the raid on Tommy’s HQ, it looked like a full blown war between both families would play out for the rest of the series with the police caught in the middle. However, this is wrapped up pretty quickly – as Tommy arranges a marriage between John and a girl from the Lee family. Some people have described it as contrived and I’m going to have to agree here – even if I enjoyed it’s execution. However, something that I didn’t enjoy was yet again the Ada and Freddy pregnancy story – even if it does create tension when Freddy is captured by the police. The fallout of this in Episode 5 will certainly be interesting, especially if Tommy suspects Grace as being the one who tipped them off. Where it goes from here however is still anyone’s guess, and this show has managed to remain delightfully unpredictable.
It still remains beautifully shot, with the high production values working very well indeed. And whilst this may end up being one of the weaker episodes of the series, I certainly enjoyed it nonetheless and it’s not necessarily a bad episode, it’s just a step down in quality. But I look forward to more, and can’t wait for next week.