Oz

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HBO (ended 2003)

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Ho_Man

User Score: 249

SUBMIT REVIEW

Oz Fan Reviews (65)

8.8
out of 10
Average
2,075 votes
  • That's the name on the street for the Oswald Maximum Security Penitentiary.

    9.0
    Now whether Oz is realistic to actual prison life is anyone's guess. Personally, I am guessing that they take alot of creative liberties, but either way there is no doubting this - Tom Fontana made one damn good show. Complete with violence, drug abuse, and yes....even rape, Oz is not an easy show to watch at times. However, if you can stomach it, you will find yourself nodding approvingly and saying at the end of every episode, "This is one damn good show."

    I cannot be biased by my love for the show, though. As it goes on, the plotlines become more ludicrous and lazy (Maxim magazine? Lottery tickets? C'mon, now), but that is balanced very well by extraordinary acting, and the later seasons while below the show's former quality, demonstrate MANY powerful moments scattered throughout. Oz is indeed a trendsetting show; as it was the first of its kind and includes many television firsts. It is hard to be original these days, and Oz did it. A true gem in and of itself indeed. It's a shame it didn't get the same recognition as Sopranos, Sex & The City, and Six Feet Under do.
  • One of the greatest shows to come from HBO.

    9.0
    Oz takes a violent, drug-filled prison environment and crosses it with interesting and unique plotlines and character development to give us one extremely entertaining and addictive show.

    The show, which focuses on an experimental cellblock called Emerald City, offers an interesting take on prison life, showing an environment of drugs and violence, where the main goal of any inmate is usually to stay alive. Oz provides an entire lineup of interesting and unique individuals and the plotlines, although they can get a little wacky at times, are completely different than anything else on TV, and keep you always wanting to see the next episode. The realism of what goes on inside of Oz is questionable but I don't think it matters too much since the end result is so enjoyable to watch.
  • This is my abosoulte favorite show

    10
    This is one of the best shows I have ever seen,It covers so many situations.

    Beecher and Keller *drools* are my favorites in the show, I wish Keller didn\'t die and that there was a 7th season.

    Ryan and Alverez are great as well. I love Alverez\'s deep voice it sends shivers down my spine
  • Raw, brutal, but highly addictive ...

    10
    What is it that makes HBO's ultra volitale men in prison drama Oz such compulsively addictive viewing? Perhaps it's the layers of storylines being told over one another, perhaps it's the fact that this is one of the finest ensemble casts ever assembled, or, possibly, because one is so shocked at what is seen on screen that they anxiously, or dreadfully, await to see just who gets shanked next or what else develops. Whatever the case, Oz remains one of the best shows to ever grace HBO, and one of the most underrated.

    To put it all in one simple statement ... Oz doesn't let you down. If anything, the message sent is: NEVER go to prison, just watch it on TV.
  • Hbo Makes great TV show, some of the best I have ever seen.

    10
    When it comes to making a cable TV show there is none better than HBO. I mean this network has brought you The Sopranos, Sex and the City, Curb Your Enthusiasm and many more but its Started with OZ. OZ is short for Oswald Federal Penitentiary, and your are lead through your television journey by Wheelchair bound Augustus Hill. This show received much critical acclaim and always pushed the envelope on hot topic issue such as should the mentally handicapped be executed and so on. This show has always entertained me and I never missed an episode. So take a journey into Emerald City and see what life is like on one of the deadliest maximum security prisons there ever was and I’ll bet you get hooked.
  • Well get yourself ready for one of the most exciting prison reality shows you have ever experienced.

    9.4
    This has to be the best prison drama that has every been made. I have never been to prison but this show is so real you feel like your sitting in the ceil next to a convicted felon. It will blow you away and keep you glued to you plasma"s. Enjoy.
  • This show is great! Why cant there be more episodes. We need an Oz Channel sending the series 24/7

    9.6
    This show must be one of the most violent and hard edge shows ever shown on tv.
    It has a damn good plot and many interested points presented by Augustus Hill, the lovable narrator.

    If u havent seen this show yet, find a channel that shows them (TV3 and ZTV for norway, sweden and denmark)
    Or buy the dvds
  • Oz details the daily life (and death) of the inmates at Oswald Penitentiary. Different cliques and alliances make for interesting pod-mates, and internal power struggles and vendettas affect not only the inmates but everyone who enters the world of Oz.

    9.3
    The first episode of Oz I saw was the one where Beecher uses his fingernails to murder the Nazi guard who had allowed the skinhead inmates to break Beecher's arms and legs. There was a lot of other stuff going on in that episode, but I will never forget the scene of Beecher calmly clipping his blood-soaked fingernails into the toilet and flushing the murder weapon/evidence away.

    And the show only continued to get better from there! Even though each character has a despicable side (which Tom Fontana pulled no punches in showing), they also have a oddly likeable side, which pulls you into the stories and makes the show as addicting as the drugs that play a prominent role in many of the storylines.

    Towards the end of the series, it seemed that the writers were running out of ideas, so the show became "who can we kill off this episode." It became tedious then, and it seemed that ending the series was the best idea. The final season, however, may have been the best one, with the execution of Cyril O'Reilly being one of the most heartbreaking stories I've ever seen. I loved the storyline about producing the play "Macbeth" and the way it played out for the lives of the characters.

    The show is raw, bloody, graphic and defintely NOT for everyone. But if you like that sort of thing, it's definitely for you!
  • A show that had it all but not for the faint hearted

    8.2
    OZ is unlike any other tv series I have seen.

    I found it extremely addictive, and quite frankly if this show doesn't convince you to stay out of prison, then nothing will.

    A great cast, starring Christopher Meloni, Ernie Hudson, Rita Moreno, Eamonn Walker

    Violence, sex, coarse language - OZ had it all and plenty of it.

  • utterly fantastic!

    10
    OZ is probably one the best television shows I've ever seen. It was dramatic, hard hitting, and utterly entertaining. The writing was amazing, and when combined with the wonderfully talented actors, each and every character felt one hundred percent believable and real. It is sad to think that there will never be a new episode. Fortunatly for us however any OZ episode is watchable over and over again!
  • This HBO show is all about life in the Oswald State Correctional Penitentiary and is the most raw show I have ever seen on T.V. There are so many amazing actors that bring life in prison to an absolute reality to the viewer.

    10
    This show is my all time favourite!!! The actors on this show could actually deter someone from ever committing a crime...it is that realistic. It was never wise to really like a character as you never knew how long they would last....This show is a must see and HBO needs to bring it back to life!!!
  • Ruthless, difficult, uncompromising, unpleasant, unsettling and utterly Brilliant!

    10
    Consistently well-written and acted, Oz is without a doubt the was in its time one of the top ten best thing on TV. Quality wise, it's up there with the first 4 seasons of Homicide: Life on the Street as the most compelling hour of television drama. Presenting a harsh and realistic view of prison life, Oz is a wonderful mixture of superb acting and character development; all of which rides on a nuanced and erudite core (Foucault's Panopticon is the inspiration for Em City's design...and ultimate failure). It is the only show on TV, that I can think of, that has presented characters who were intensely dislikable one moment and oddly empathetic the next. That I am repulsed by, sympathetic with, intrigued about, and involved with every character that has lived, died or survived on the show, is no small feat. Good TV exists. And, for my money, Oz is not only good TV, it is better than most films released throughout the year.
  • One of the best shows ever.

    10
    To put it simply, Oz is one of the best shows of all-time. It paved the way for HBO's 1-hour dramas, and shows like The Sopranos and Deadwood would have had a tougher time getting off the ground had it not been for Oz.

    Why is Oz so great? Because it has a variety of everything, and excels in almost every category.

    - Tons of different characters with different backgrounds, so there's something for everyone.

    - It's well written, with some fantastic dialogue.

    - The acting is superb. Really amazing how they could find such a talented bunch of unknowns (and even after the show has ended, some of these actors are still unknown. It's a real shame, since people like Eamonn Walker should be getting starring roles.)

    - Great directing, and addicting storylines.

    The one problem I had with Oz was how an inmate would get killed in almost every episode. While this added a shocking, 'anybody could die next' feel to the show, it also made the show a little unrealistic. Other than that, this is a fantastic show, be sure to check it out.
  • Pretty Strong

    8.0
    Not for anyone's eyes (not only because it's for adults only, but also cause it showed strong images of sex and violence).
    All and all it was one of the finest shows i've ever seen.
    Now I appreciate it even more as I often see shows that are similar in lots of aspects.
  • One of the best

    10
    This has to be one of the best series' I have ever seen. There are very few sows out there that have been that strong from staart to finish. Every episode not only needs to be seen in order to make sense but you want to watch all of it, such entwisting compelx storylines with plenty of sensless violence and soft core nudity (mostly men but somehow female nudity was almost regular in the show, in a mens prison, go figure?)Truly worth a watch or five.
  • People should thank these men in Oz , for their good looks and dramatic mode. They should put more female, I know it's a male jail. But that one girl that was in jail, then the next season she died. The reason why men dream about sex all the time.

    9.1
    Very sexy, dramatic, and witty. You should brink back this show, who cares about the contract. There's a reason why men don't really like women, only the police officer and the dr. Enough with the men on men action here. Need more female leads in this shows. These men are hot and very careful who and ehat they are dealing with. They should have re-runs on HBO, it's very pleasent to deal with the stories on how men feels when they don't have a life. Only men have a life with each other, and tells the inside of a mind of a person who is incarcerated. Deals with real-life issues drugs,sex and compettition.
  • Prison shows are not unique but Oz does present itself in a unique light. The superficial story telling is excellent. One could stop there and just enjoy the story.

    9.1
    Prison shows are not unique but Oz does present itself in a unique light. The superficial story telling is excellent. One could stop there and just enjoy the story. The characters all have depth. None of them are without positive and negative traits. All of them get pushed to there limits and demonstrate both how good one can be and how low we all can fall.

    The writers do not stop there. The layers and questions it asks are exceptional. What is a prison? Do we make our own prison? What is freedom? Who really is free? What is the meaning of life and what is really important?

    The darkness of the show and brutality give you a visiceral response. Once you recover from the response, the deeper meanings start to emerge. This show is not for the weak of stomach, but if you want to explore life, explore Oz.
  • you don't get to see this much violence and nudity on regular tv so its cable. you see how these people got into this situation and now how they are dealing with their bunk mates and they like to keep their races seperate. you have nazi's and brotherhood

    7.4
    this show has a lot of violence and racism going on all the time. the african american people trying to kill the aryan race people and visa versa. they are selling drugs and sex. they get very graffic in this one. it's funny watching the two guys from svu here.
  • AAAAAWESOME! **** 4 STARS

    10
    I\'ve just started in on Season 2 of this show...AAAAAWESOME! The writing, the directing, the acting, the cinematography...sooo good.

    I\'m amazed how they could keep the story going. I mean how much can you tell about a group of guys in prison. And what amazes me, is that these are hardcore criminals, yet you find yourself sympathizing with them. Insane!

    That\'s all I got to say. **** 4 STARS
  • Fantastic Drama!

    10
    I haven't seen Season 1 I only began watching at the end of it after the prison riot. Since I've started watching I have discovered that Oz really is compulsive viewing.

    You don't want to miss an episode because you could fall far behind. It amazing how long these stories can go on. The Beecher/Schillinger vendetta continued throughout the entire series with one having the upper hand and them the other.

    The use of Augustus Hill as the narrator and flashbacks on how these men committed their crimes only help enhance the quality of Oz.

    These men are serious criminals who have committed horrible crimes, but I found myself connecting with them and caring for them too.
  • Oz: The name on the streets for Oswald Correctional Facility.

    9.5
    Oz was unbelievably gritty, and a joy to watch.

    I have always said though, if there was this much death in a regular prison, it would be shut down immediately.

    This show is about life in the prison, and about the way the many different factions relate to one another. Unlike most shows, where you can predict what is going to happen to most characters, that was never the case here. Oz was amazingly told, and managed to shock you every episode.

    I have purchased every season on DVD and have converted many people I know into hardcore fans of the show. And with only 8 episodes per season (except for one, which was 16 episodes) , and only 6 seasons, its just not enough.
  • I don't think we're in Kansas anymore...OOPS!! I dropped the soap!

    10
    This cutting edge drama can drive you to the edge of your seat and back again. Never did I ever think I would cry, be angry, or feel hurt for prisoners. But no matter why they are in, they will touch you in some way!! You never know where the story is going, but yet, it is NOT a bit confusing!! By the end of the first season I started watching---I believe my husband said it was the third---I was hooked! I knew who I loved, hated, hurt for, wanted justice against or for. This show is amazing! Hardly any special effects or stubts, this show is PURE acting. If the cast couldn't act, the show wouldn't have been worth a work pass, it would have been executed. And here's a treat, many of the players went onto work for the Law and Order francise!!
  • Now, this is what you call a show.

    9.1
    I came into Oz late...if I can recall clearly, it was the second season that caught my eye, and I have been a fan from sice then.

    What a show?

    The show centers around a prison, its inmates and the prison guards.

    It's bloody, brutal, emotional and highly entertaining.

    Although, the show started getting slightly boring in its latter season, and I was really mad when some of my favorite cast mates like: Hill, Warden Glynn, Said, Schillinger were killed off, the show still kept my interest.

    I love this show.
  • If you like Prison Break, i guarantee that you would love this show!

    9.3
    Oz is simply one of the best shows i've ever seen. The way the story continues in each episode is very good. And most important of all it's very realistic.
    The actors offcourse play a huge role in this show. Each acter fit perfectly in the role they are playing.
  • when oz first aired i thought what in the world is this. i had never seen a program as graphic or spellbounding as this one, i believe this to be as close to real prison situation as you could get. the casting was perfect i would not change any thing.

    10
    Me and my husband have all the oz articles , every dvd, the book by Augustus Hill, the cd. We absolutly love this program. The characters are so real and some are endearing. My biggest question was always how did Adabesi keep that little hat on his head. Beacher turned into the gayest man i have ever seen, but still tried to love women when his heart belonged to Keller. Ryan and Cyril also were our favorites. The hardest part was when they executed Cyril i cried ove this, i do not believe in the death penalty and when they are mentally challenged it is more horrifing.
  • One of the Greatest Dramas and Greatest Stories Ever Told. "Oz" is So Full of Realism, It Makes You Never Want to Go to Prison....Ever

    10
    "Oz", the epic television drama showcasing the innerworkings of the Oswald Maximum Security Penitentiary, is one of the crown jewels of modern television. It gives us the opportunity to see what happens to the criminals after they are prosecuted, convicted, and carelessly thrown into the prison system. "Oz" is full of violence, hatred, and desperation, but it is also full of redemption, peace, and courage. It is a modern day teacher of sociology, demonstrating to us why some people deserve to be free, and why others should never see the outside world again. This acclaimed effort created by the masterful genius Tom Fontana, is sure to make you never want to step foot inside a prison.
  • Pile on the gay sex, mateys!

    10
    Beecher/Keller makes me twitch and... well, it makes me do things too inappropraite to say here. Keller has got to be the greatest character I've seen on a television show, mostly because, yes, he oozes animal sexuality all over my screen. But the storylines too are really good which is amazingly rare these days.
  • One of the best and probably most realistic shows on tv.

    10
    Oz is definetly not your typical prison drama. I don't think this much violence and suffering was ever shown on tv so cleverly and realistically before. Unlike horror movies that usually contain a lot of pointless slaughtering this is all real and what really happens in the world today, which is what makes you want to keep watching. The characters were as awesome as the show, you'd just get caught up. The eventful drama would definetly be incomplete without those clever narations from Augustus Hill played by Harold Perrineau. For me the whole show was great, thought I really didn't like the last 10 episodes, but I was sorry to see it end. I would definetly love to see a movie on this. Even the soundtrack to the series was awesome. Also a great show to discover some very intresting underrated, but brilliant actors.
  • Oz rules.

    10
    Best TV series I\'ve ever seen. It\'s original and educational to watch. Every episode has a great screenplay pulled off together with good acting.

    You could say that Oz is unqique. Think of it as good as Pulp Fiction, but in prison. It has this typical Tarantino-style screenplay. Oz is TV at its finest.
  • Another masterpiece from HBO

    10
    HBO is a factory of success but with quality and Oz is probably one the biggest quality product on television in last years. Produced by Barry Levinson and the great Tom Fontana and with one of the best chorale casts ever. The story is full of realism sometimes too real for some viewers. The script is amazing and gets better with each season. Talented directors like Kathy Bates. And a cast of those actors we continously see in supporting roles in other series, just to mention Law & Order, but actors that in Oz they shine with a special light.
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