Clearly never wanting to get out of the successful Game of Thrones business, HBO is firing off into the binge business this weekend with the debut of the Kit Harington starring and executive produced Gunpowder. Premiering on December 18, with its second and third parts on December 19 and 20th, the miniseries is a very violent and very watchable early Guy Fawkes gift of sorts from the Holiday Night King.
Based on the 1605 effort of Fawkes and some besieged English Catholics to destroy the House of Lords and kill King James 1 to put one of their own on the throne, Gunpowder is a welcomed and strong tonic for Thrones fans as they wait for the final season of the Emmy-winning series based on George R. R. Martin ‘s books to premiere in 2019. While there are no dragons, there is a battle for who will rule in the historical drama and Harington’s 17th century-set Robert Catesby is very much in the Jon Snow vein, as I say in my video review above.
In short, watch Gunpowder for the swords, fireworks, the attempt to breach a different sort of barrier than the wall that once stood so solid at the northern end of the Seven Kingdoms and more. Staking out a place of its own on the small screen, the Ronan Bennett penned and J Blakeson vividly directed miniseries also reveals that Harington, who it turns out is a descendent to the plot pivotal country gentleman of Catesby, is well on point here in Gunpowder. Or, in short again, the Emmy nominee is clearly and seemingly steadily starting to steer his career beyond the Thrones event horizon with his first producing property.
With that, having already played in the UK, the bloody and explicit Gunpowder leaves little to the imagination in a time of severe religious conflict and where a sharp stab, the hangman’s noose or torture takes many to their God. To that end, in a cast that also includes Liv Tyler and Thrones alums Mark Gatiss and Tom Cullen, the real star of Gunpowder in many ways is Shaun Dooley as the persecuting Protestant and thoroughly wicked and indoctrinated Sir William Wade.
As you get ready to get in full holiday mode and Christmas is coming, take a look at my video review of Gunpowder above. Tell us, will you be watching the Kit Harington led series starting Monday?