Why you should be watching... Fargo 2 months ago

Why you should be watching... Fargo

A slick crime anthology series with a killer rotating cast...

Considering we’re all spending a lot of time indoors these days, the JOE team has picked out viewing recommendations for TV series, old and new, to get stuck into to keep boredom at bay. 

Title: Fargo

Starring: Martin Freeman, Billy Bob Thornton, Patrick Wilson, Kirsten Dunst, Jesse Plemons, Ted Danson, Bokeem Woodbine, Ewan McGregor, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Carrie Coon and many, many more familiar faces.

Where can you watch it? Netflix

Number of seasons/episodes: Three seasons, 30 episodes

IMDB rating: 8.9 / 10

Why you should watch it: It'll be a while before season four arrives, with production having been suspended due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic affecting all forms of entertainment.

Plenty of time to catch up, so. For those unfamiliar, Fargo is indeed connected to the Coen Brothers' mid-90s classic of the same name.

Set in the same universe, the show presents different characters and stories with each new season, all of whom tend to get caught up in crime-related misadventures often with deadly consequences along the way.

The first season, set in 2006, focuses on a hapless insurance salesman (Martin Freeman) driven to violence and caught up in the sinister web of a highly skilled hitman (Billy Bob Thornton), leading to a deadly game of cat and mouse.

Season two - the best of the three in this writer's opinion - takes place in the late 1970s, centring on Patrick Wilson's determined state trooper as he investigates a triple murder. Meanwhile, a local crime family deals with both tragedy and competition.

The third season takes place in 2010 and gives you two Ewan McGregors for the price of one as he plays a pair of very different brothers, both of whom run afoul of a series of mysterious individuals as they try to thieve their way to a better life.

As with the film, Fargo deals in very dark comedy, over-the-top characters, bursts of shocking violence, sharp writing and generally strong casting across the board.

It's not perfect and you may find things a wee bit mean-spirited at times but when it's on its game, Fargo is worthy of being thrown into the 'golden age of TV' conversation.