I have watched Brotherhood for the last six weeks after Deadwood and have finally decided to stop watching - ironically to have a chance to watch the Sopranos season 2 on DVD. Brotherhood started with promise. The acting and camera work was on par with HBO, and many of the plots looked to have big payoffs down the line. Six episodes in there have been few to no consequences for the characters and virtually no emotional pulse being emoted from the show. The entire production is so grim it forgets that even the tough life has laughs. Just look at Nip/Tuck, the Sopranos or even Deadwood for examples of balancing drama and comedy. These brothers and politicians should be breaking each others balls - not just carrying on and mumbling through each scene. Furthermore, the wife subplot is of little interest, even though the scene in the woods had the potential to be great. I use the word potential because overall it was squandered with poor directorial choices. Instead of having her sink to the ground in her acceptance of the world finding out of her problem, the camera just cuts out. One of the truly emotional scenes is undercut in exchange for just another character staring into the camera and a plot that barely moves forward.
Brotherhood is a character driven show and yet none of the characters are likable or fleshed out. Why is this city worth fighting for? Neither brother seems to have an answer other than "remember the way it used to be - I want that again." The cardinal sin of the show is that the marking of the "Brotherhood" on each members wrist has not been explored since the first episode. What is this Brotherhood and how does it bind the Irish community together? Purhaps this will be answered by the 11th episode, but by the sixth I am exhausted. Why watch a show with no plot direction, no humor and unrelatable characters. What started out promising ended with a whimper - and under 200,000 viewers. Yet I am not cancelling Showtime even though I ordered it to watch Brotherhood. Weeds has grown on me - and Dexter looks like it may be the next big thing.
Overall show rating: 7.8/10