Posted by on Wednesday, March 30th, 2005

Netflix brought me the first season of Carnivale right when I needed it.  Oh, how I needed this gorgeous work of art.  The story takes place in dustbowl, depression USA in the mid-1930s.  We follow a traveling carnival as its workers and performers attempt to make a living in a broke, choking country.  Along the way, there is a fair amount of magical realism.  To my mind, magical realism makes the world go round.  I won’t spoil the plot, because I am not that cruel. 

The cast includes Amy Madigan, Adrienne Barbeau, Nick Stahl, Clancy Brown, Clea Duvall, Michael J. Anderson, Tim Dekay, and many other really talented folks who, until now, haven’t had the screen time they deserved.  The art direction is heart-breakingly good, the cinematography harkens back to an earlier time in film, the costumes are spot on, and the writing is shatteringly good.  I can’t wait to see the second season.

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