Damnation: In Wyoming Fashion | Season 1, Episode 6 | Rating: 11/11 |
Flashback! Wyoming, 1924
Mustache-less Creeley (née Squealy), Young Seth and Beard-less Lew are headed to a homestead to bully a farmer off his land at the behest of an oil company. Seth tries to counsel his brother to tuck away his feelings and do what needs to be done to get the job done and show their father that he can hack it. To prove himself, Creeley takes the lead when they confront the farmer, but he stops short when he sees the man’s son. Seth takes over and after some negotiation from the wrong end of a gun, the farmer says that he’ll leave. Seth wants to shoot him to prove a point but Creeley talks him down.
That turns out to be a mistake. When their father asks how the day went, Seth tries to cover for Creeley, which earns him a beating for two reasons: 1) for not making sure the farmer left and, 2) for covering for his brother. Dear old dad takes Creeley back to the farm to deal with the farmer who tries to face them down. After making Creeley kill the farmer, his father gives him a knife to put a notch on his gun. Whether in penitence or in remembrance, Creeley begins putting those notches on himself, instead.
Friends and Enemies (And Everything in Between)
In the present day, we pick up right where we left off with Creeley holding Seth at gunpoint and demanding he return to Wyoming to face the charges that landed Creeley in jail. Luckily for Seth, Lew finally catches up to them and now it’s a three-way face-off. Creeley may now be ruthless, but he’s not invincible so Lew and Seth knock him out … and take his boots because they’re petty.
When Creeley wakes up, he heads back to the whorehouse where Bessie tries to get him to open up: he reveals his connection to Martin Eggers-Hyde (Gabriel Mann). The industrialist secured Creeley’s release from prison, but now he’s beholden to Hyde and he had to get over his sensitivity to get his job done. Getting Seth to confess to his crimes is not just about clearing Creeley’s name, it’s also the only way to get him out from under Hyde’s thumb.
Seth and Amelia (and now Lew) are still trying to figure out how to give the farmers some leverage. The banker is ready to get out of dodge because he can’t deal with the pressure of Creeley’s demands and the strike. He wants to foreclose on everything so the farmers need cash fast. Good thing Lew is a bank robber. It’s funny that Amelia doesn’t bat an eyelash at that revelation, but she’s very clear on where she stands on strikebreakers and Pinkertons. Apparently, she hates these thugs for hire and clearly doesn’t know Seth used to be one.
There’s a lot of competing interests going on. Local merchant, Melvin Stubbs, has announced that he’s running against Berryman for sheriff, so now the sheriff is trying to figure out who to align himself with. Berryman arrests Creeley for the stunt on the Ferris wheel hoping Hyde will show up so that he can cut a deal with him, but Creeley isn’t going to call him and admit that he’s failing. So Bessie drops the bomb that she’s Berryman’s daughter in order to give some leverage. In return, he gives her a watch that his mother gave him, so – basically – they officially go together.
Amelia, Lew and Seth plan a bank heist to get money for the farmers, Amelia plants the IDs of the three men Seth killed on the body of the assassin and calls the cops pretending she was attacked. She cuts a deal with Berryman to get him support from the farmers and they strike a tentative truce with Berryman looking the other way even though it’s clear Seth is responsible for these deaths. And Hyde does come to town but it’s just to get Creeley. The episode ends as a tearful Bessie watches Hyde drive Creeley away.
There’s just a few episodes left this season and we’re at a point where all of these connections (familial, political and otherwise) are ready to collide. Lew and Seth not only found cash but permits for factories in the bank vault, so Hyde is clearly pushing farmers off their land in Holden in anticipation of starting up factories. They haven’t told us why this town, in particular, is so important but I’m sure we’ll find out. And we still don’t know what Seth framed Creeley for in Wyoming. It looks like their father had them both doing a fair share of killing so what drove the wedge between the brothers? Did Seth get tired of covering for his brother or did he just want out of the life altogether? Hopefully, we’ll get some answers soon.