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Review: Sheriffs and same-sex kisses on Strange Empire

Of course the week that Diane is off on vacation, Strange Empire‘s major storylines headed into a new direction.

“Electricity” was full of just that, literally and figuratively. Literally, a power line came down in Janestown, throwing its sparks hither and yon, and giving Slotter the chance to shift into a higher gear of crazy. The man has been on edge as of late and by Monday night was threatening not only the life of the pony but on the baby too. The former was dispatched off-camera and it looked like the same fate might befall the latter. (I didn’t really suspect that would happen; murdering a baby would make Slotter wholly unlikeable and we’re supposed to hope for his tortured soul.)

Meanwhile, Kat ascended to the role of Sheriff. After a couple of weeks of tension between the town’s ladies and Sheriff Little, everything came to an explosive head. Little made the mistake of fixing his rheumy gaze on Fiona and wanted to spend the night with her. Fiona decided she was up for it–she and her mother needed the money, she reckoned–but things went bad when Little tried to take what he’d previously said he’d pay for. Enter Kat, who promised to kill Little if he tried something like that again. Of course he did–pulling off a great impression of Jack Nicholson in The Shining by hacking his way into the Briggs’ home–before Kat shot him where he stood. (After instructing him to turn around so that she wasn’t a “back-shooter.”) The ladies may have been toasting Kat’s new job, but what will happen once Slotter finds out? He did say Kat would hang if she killed Little.

But perhaps the biggest moment of the episode was reserved for Rebecca and Finn, who finally kissed after weeks of sultry looks behind (and sometimes in front of) Thomas. Of course, no one knows Finn is actually a woman, so the lip-lock will be even more shocking when that comes to light. For now, though, things are already pretty messed up. Rebecca asked Isabelle for help in the bedroom so that she could be a better wife-to-be, but instead of directing it at Thomas she turned her growing affections to Finn instead. Perhaps Rebecca is hedging her bets; Thomas’ gangrenous leg means he’s going to need surgery soon and he may not come out of it alive.

Notable quotes

  • “There’s electricity in the air. Wonderful.”–Rebecca
  • “I don’t know what to do. The only men I have handled have been dead.”–Rebecca
  • “I’m no back-shooter.”–Kat

Strange Empire airs Mondays at 9 p.m. on CBC.

Greg David
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Greg David

Prior to becoming a television critic and partner at TV, Eh?, Greg David was a critic for TV Guide Canada, the country's most trusted source for TV news. He has interviewed television actors, actresses and behind-the-scenes folks from countless programs. Survivor winners, Donald Trump, Jerry Bruckheimer ... he has interviewed (literally) hundreds of TV people over the course of his career. He is a past member of the Television Critics Association.
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3 thoughts on “Review: Sheriffs and same-sex kisses on Strange Empire”

  1. Slotter killed the pony his father sent him as a present for his son – not a donkey. And don’t forget Kat’s spooky younger daughter, telling Slotter about his past and seeing ghost babies on the ceiling of the whorehouse.

    Kat does seem to turn up just in time far too often for credibility.

    Why isn’t this show getting major press coverage? It’s unlike anything I’ve ever seen on the CBC (granted, I’m American, so that’s not much). It also wouldn’t play well down here; it’s a feminist show with a multicultural cast. I’m hoping against hope it gets renewed.

    1. Thanks for confirming that it was a pony and not a donkey. Yeah, that scene with Slotter’s daughter was pretty freaky. Strange Empire is getting coverage here in Canada, but most of the focus has been on why it isn’t getting huge ratings instead of celebrating how unique and entertaining it is.

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