Debuting on January 10, Taboo is a visceral, brutish and bloody tale of early-19th century intrigue that is very dark, very dense, truly novel and very much worth watching.
Created by Tom Hardy, his father Edward and Steven Knight, the eight-part FX series starring the Mad Max: Fury Road actor takes you on a journey of curse men, hidden and maybe even forgotten history and a reveals a new way of seeing the Old World.
With the once rich, powerful and toxic British East India Company as his nemesis, Hardy’s once thought-dead and now-scarred James Keziah Delaney returns to London from abroad in 1814 to take over his deceased father’s shipping business. Part of the inheritance comes with family secrets, a half sister (Oona Chaplin) and a strategic piece of land called Nootka Sound that everyone wants and Delaney refuses to give up – and, with an excellent Jonathan Pryce as East India Company chair Sir Stuart Strange, that’s just Taboo‘s setup.
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Now some might see this latest collaboration between Hardy and Peaky Blinders creator and Locke director Knight as slow going. However, as I say in my video review above, I found it very true to its time with the pacing of what would be the 19th century novel equivalent of a thriller — plus, from what I saw, the history and the plotting certainly come in heaving waves that require fast reactions and sure footing.
Or, to put it another way, you’re a long way here from Jane Austen, baby.
Click on the video above to see more of my take on the Ridley Scott-EP’d Taboo. It’s forbidden fruit you’ll want to bite into.
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