(MILD SPOILER ALERT)
Finished Deadwood. Was sorely disappointed. The wrapup could be the worst betrayal of Chekov’s Gun I’ve ever seen.
The quality of the work remained high, the characters compelling. But Deadwood spent entire episodes establishing factions and foreshadowing bloodbaths. And when you give us elements like 50 ruthless Pinkertons, 17 1/2 ruffians-for-hire, and 150 opium-crazed Chinamen handling firearms for the first time, you better by God use them. Especially those Chinamen.
And Deadwood didn’t.
Okay, okay, all the Chinamen weren’t on opium. But there had to be enough for some awesome television. So the end of the show disappoints despite all its strengths.
In conclusion, Robert Heinlein famously observed,
An armed society is a polite society.
Well, the effing Dean of Science Fiction never effing saw Deadwood.