The Looming Tower's tense "Y2K" is appropriately anticlimactic 

B-

There are upsides and downsides to the smart storytelling choices made in “Y2K,” the fifth episode of a series that’s thus far had plenty of the former and a few of the latter. That’s a rough distribution that remains true in this hour. The upsides are plentiful. At least one of the downsides, however, is a doozy, and…

The Looming Tower explores the importance of symbols in an underwhelming hour

B-

It’s to the credit of The Looming Tower that even when it needs to do some housekeeping, the people making the show look for ways to do more than just check items off a list. Another series might be content to simply move the pieces around, but with “Mercury,” credited writer Adam Rapp and director Ali Selim aim…

On The Late Show, pissed-off actor Jeff Daniels talks about playing a pissed-off FBI agent in The Looming Tower

In the new Hulu series, The Looming Tower, about the intelligence community’s scrambling efforts to predict and prevent the terrorist attacks of 9/11, Jeff Daniels plays real-life FBI agent John O’Neil. A dedicated man as convinced of Osama Bin Laden’s ill intentions as he is that the interdepartmental infighting…

In a bloody season finale, Godless loses its own final battle

C-

Godless’s season finale is not without merit, though you’ve got to dig deep beneath the mountain of corpses it’s perched on to find it. From the start, creator-writer-director Scott Frank has wielded the bright sun of the show’s Western setting like a gunslinger of light and shadow, and he puts that talent to work…

Godless reveals the origin of the great Roy versus Frank feud 

B

After a season of buildup, Roy Goode’s past and his present both arrive at their long-foreseen destinations. Godless’s penultimate episode, “Dear Roy…,” takes its title from the letter the gunslinger received from his brother, written years ago but which he’s only able to read now. We hear it through Alice’s voice as…

Despite flashbacks and Frank Griffin's softer side, Godless is still just good enough

B-

Never mind the title,“Fathers & Sons.” This episode of Godless’s present-day action nor the suite of flashbacks that complement it pertain to that relationship. Come to think of it, I’m not sure there’s a single father-and-son moment depicted at all. This just one episode after “Wisdom of the Horse,” which at times…

Horsing around: Godless turns the focus to its four-legged friends

B-

From its title (“Wisdom of the Horse”) on down, Godless’s third episode is full of horse shit. I don’t mean that it’s bad! I just mean that in terms of story and screentime, it is simply consumed by shit about horses. Roping horses. Breaking horses. Riding horses. Falling off horses. Getting back on horses. Searching…

Godless offers a solid, sunlit, star-studded take on the Western's rough comforts

B

Godless has two major factors in its favor: the sun and the stars. The former glares into the mud-caked eyes of Sheriff Bill McNue (Scoot McNairy), a lawman who’s secretly going blind, then shines down on a field where he collects flowers to place on his late wife’s grave with a brightness that echoes his still-warm…

Jeff Daniels picks his 5 favorite Westerns of all time, from Butch Cassidy to Bonanza

Netflix’s Godless is set in the Old West and follows notorious criminal Frank Griffin, played by Jeff Daniels, and his gang of outlaws on a mission of revenge. Earlier this week, we asked Scoot McNairy, who plays sheriff Bill McNue, to give us his five favorite Westerns of all time. Now, Daniels obliges us with the…

Jeff Daniels and the cast of Godless aren’t sure why we romanticize the Old West

Netflix’s Godless is set in the Old West and follows notorious criminal Frank Griffin (played by Jeff Daniels) and his gang of outlaws on a mission of revenge. It’s the latest entry in Hollywood’s long history of television and film set in the Old West. In the video above, we asked the cast of Godless—Jeff Daniels,…

Jeff Daniels leaves the speeches to someone else in 1st trailer for Steven Soderbergh's Godless 

The last time Jeff Daniels led a TV series, he was given to all kinds of pontificating (well, his character was, and even then, those were just Aaron Sorkin’s words). But in the first trailer for Steven Soderbergh and Scott Frank’s Godless, Daniels is all searching looks and wordless threats. Unfortunately, this…