Posted by: ilanasmith | June 20, 2005

Welcome to fücking Deadwood!

"Should it ever be your misfortune, gentlemen, or mine, to need to kill a man, then let us toast, together, the possibility that our trials be held in this camp." 

It’s like they beta’d the Californian justice system in the Badlands of South Dakota.

Alex and I have just spent a Florida-interrupted few days marathoning a TV show, and I’m honour-bound to report that my pantheon of shows has a new member. At the other end of the spectrum from shiny young Veronica Mars is a friendly and couth little show called Deadwood.

Deadwood has a fair bit going for it. It’s dirty, violent and primal and looks and sounds beautiful.  It has a huge cast of wonderfully dimensional characters staffed by a veritable treasure-trove of "Hey it’s that guy"s.  It’s written by psychotic junkie David Milch.  But I love it most for the language. 

When most people talk about Deadwood language, they kinda mean the obvious thing.  That thing that has people starting way too many forum posts with "I’m not a prude but…"  The thing most amusingly referred to as the "swears".  (What are we? Five?)

Yeah, so profanity is used in Deadwood.  A lot.  A fucking lot.  If you want to know what a fucking lot is, here’s a link to seven rather blue-tinged minutes of audio snipped from one 53-minute Deadwood episode.  This page even handily has a running tally.

But I don’t think it’s the swearing that makes the language of Deadwood so notable.  Someone (who as far as I can tell is known only for this line) said "Profanity is the common crutch of the conversational cripple".  Deadwood is an example of the absolute opposite.  Deadwood dialogue is far from conversationally retarded.  Deadwood dialogue is so ornate yet poetic and lyrical, it’s Shakespearean. 

Deadwood makes watching TV a contact sport, but damn… I mean, fuck it’s worth it.


Responses

  1. Wash your mouth out with soap Trollop

  2. phuqit… got enough soap for me too? and is there room in that handbasket? hahahaha

  3. Does your mother mean Anthony Trollop?


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