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Saturday 9:00 PM on AMC (Returning June 11, 2016)

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 8/29/2015

Season 5 : Episode 7

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If there is one American show that I have difficulties understanding, it's this one. And it's not because of the different accents and sometimes dated vocabulary, but because many of the characters speak unclearly. I often miss lines that are important for understanding the plot, so now I've had to resort to using headphones when watching the show.

- Cullen's and Palmer's deal? I think Palmer is up to no good. Did we ever even find out who stole the cattle in the beginning? I think Durant is too obvious of a culprit, but what if it was Palmer who arranged the theft? After all, stealing someone's cattle and selling it back to them is a good deal.

- I think Cullen does suspect Sean of something. Why? I don't know. Cullen doesn't seem to be the kind of sharp guy who manages to uncover shady deals and plots to back-stab people. He rather makes in life because of his work ethics, loyalty and sense of honour. But maybe he is smarter than he has been portrayed as so far.

- Favourite storyline? Ellison's quest to uncover the dark side of railroad building. Somehow I like the idea that seeing what goes on behind the scenes of the project might harden her. She has already reported on the war, so she has seen much. But every day she seems to face things on the railroad that are unfamiliar and shocking to her. Maybe this reporter from the big city might turn into a cynic. I also like her because she is replacing Lily Bell on the show.

- Eva with Declan? No, of course not. Do I even have to justify my answer?

- Ellison's storyline? She seemed to exchange some looks with Mickey McGinnes which might mean that things between them heat up at some point. Hopefully though she doesn't leave her career for Micky. I'd like to see her as this independent female character who observes the events and gives a different, outsider perspective on what happens on the railroad. Her moral compass is surely different from that of Cullen's, so maybe that'll create some conflict between them. I realize this doesn't actually say anything specific about what I expect from her character, but the opportunities are so many. Maybe this season is building up towards a bigger armed conflict, and she becomes a reluctant participant in it, because she becomes convinced it's the right thing to do, despite her previous more peaceful convictions.

- There are actually quite many tropes they have been used already; bank robbers, railroad barons, determined settlers (the Mormons from last week), preacher man, different kinds of Native Americans, thuggish cavalry men, etc. Hard to come up with one that I would like to see, without it being turned into a parody. Collis Huntington, head of Central Pacific, boasted about having Chinese workers. Maybe Cullen could hire a few Chinese labourers too. There are far too few Asian characters in American TV productions. Another trope is the Pinkerton detectives. Ex-sheriff Barlow had been a Pinkerton man, but I would like to see a few actual ones.

- Yes, I miss Lily Bell, but not as much as I thought I would, considering how much it hurt to see her go last year. Maybe it was for the best to turn Cullen into a loner without all the relationship drama. Also, Ellison has replaced Bell well.

- Hopefully not. But if he does, I hope she betrays him. It's time for some female baddies in this sausage fest.

- The showrunners said Cullen and the Swede will meet later in the season. But I have no idea what he's up to now. In fact, I can't even imagine that his story line can be interesting at this point, without him having anyone to screw over. Maybe he'll team up with Durant again.
Wear headphones.
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