Fargo: Season 1 (DVD) – Series Review
Follow Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Distributor: 20th Century Fox
Episodes: 10
Duration: 54 min (per episode)

Fargo: Season 1 (DVD) – Series Review

Site Score
Good: Brutal scenes, dark humour mixed in between, story, great acting
Bad: Not all storylines are as interesting
User Score
(2 votes)
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Rating: 7.5/10 (2 votes cast)

Is it possible for an insecure insurance agent to take a stand and make something out of his life? Well, if there’s one thing Fargo teaches its viewers, is that it’s worth the shot. You may not like the way to get there however, but hey, no time for being picky now! Fargo is a rather brutal series but brought in a certain way so that everything doesn’t look that bad. In this review, I’ll do my best to give you a bit of an idea what to expect from Fargo.

Fargo logo

Meet Lester Nygaard (Martin Freeman). Yes, he’s the guy I mentioned in the introduction of this review. Lester is a friendly but insecure guy who works at an insurance company. One day, while he’s going about his business, he gets picked on my a former classmate (who bullied him in high school as well) who goes by the name of Sam Hess (Kevin O’Grady). Eventually, Lester falls on the ground and has to go to the hospital for a checkup. It’s here he meets the mysterious guy Lorne Malvo (Billy Bob Thornton) who offers Lester to kill Hess after hearing what happened. Not only does Lester indirectly agree, when he comes home and his wife keeps nagging and throwing insults at him, the insurance agent grabs a nearby hammer and kills his wife in cold blood. It seems our friend Malvo did quite a number on Lester’s personality.

Fargo 1

The series keeps putting the spotlight on both Lester as Malvo as the two murders (and eventually, a lot more) get discovered. Deputy Molly Solverson (Allison Tolman) seems to be the only one in town who believes Lester has something to do with the murders. The suspense keeps you on your toes as the cat and mouse game continuous throughout the whole season. As said before, Fargo offers a decent amount of brutality but instead of making everything overly dramatic, the series uses a kind of dark, dry humour to lighten the mood. It’s quite absurd to see someone murder his wife while laughing about it at the same time but Fargo succeeds in bringing this crazy mix to the table. It makes the series one of a kind and the formula just works like a charm.

Besides the main characters like Lester, Malvo and Molly, there are still a lot more persons involved in the whole story but they each have their own troubles to deal with. For one, we meet a pretty powerful and wealthy man who hires Malvo to protect him from threats on his life. Eventually, it turns out that it’s Malvo himself who’s after the rich guy’s money. This is just one of the many branches of storyline Fargo has to offer you but it must be said, some complementary storylines are just not that interesting as others and makes you want to skip to the more important parts. Luckily, those moments mostly don’t take too long.

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Acting wise, Fargo provides a fine cast with the likes of Martin Freeman, Billy Bob Thornton, Allison Tolman, Colin Hanks (who plays Gus Grimly, another police agent) and so on. There’s a huge character development throughout the first season of Fargo and it’s awesome to see the actors adapt to the situations. Near the end, the series jumps forward in time and we see how the characters we got to love (or hate), are doing and the result is quite surprising. The events that unfolded previously really changed their lives and all actors and actresses react accordingly which is of course, fantastic.

The Fargo: Season 1 DVD box offers quite some extras like audio commentary, deleted scenes, behind the scenes featurettes and interviews with the cast and crew. If you really want to know more about the series, it’s definitely worth checking those out as they give you a better picture on the idea behind Fargo.

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Fargo: Season 1 is definitely not a series you’ve seen before. Brutal scenes mixed with some very dark and dry humour just seems to be the perfect formula. The personages in the series are very diverse and interesting enough to make you wait in excitement on what’s going to happen next. Something that often lacks in other series is some decent character development, but here, you can see a real change, especially when the series make a time-leap. Overall, Fargo is definitely a series you want to watch if you’re looking for something totally fresh and new.

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Rating: 7.5/10 (2 votes cast)
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Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
Fargo: Season 1 (DVD) - Series Review, 7.5 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

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