Episode Title: "Behold a Pale Rider"
Writer: David Schickler
Director: Dean White
Previously on "Banshee:"
Welcome to "Banshee," a small Pennsylvania town where women are nearly gang-raped in alleyways, kids OD on hallucinogenic drugs at raves held in barns and teachers and her students are held hostage in the gym while one of their sociopathic captors reminisces about his high school basketball glory days.
Kai Proctor (Ulrich Thomsen) will tell you Banshee wasn’t always this bad. In fact, things were just peachy until Sheriff Hood (Antony Starr) came to town. But Hood's no big deal; wait untill Proctor gets a load of the sadistic Ukrainian mobster who’s coming to get him.
That’s more or less the gist of "Behold a Pale Rider," that "rider" referring to both Sheriff Hood and possibly the very pale, Mr. Rabbit (Ben Cross) who’s in town after Carrie/Anastasia promised to deliver Lucas to him.
While the good Sheriff is hanging out in a bar, planning to rob an Indian casino’s armored truck with a transvestite hacker and an ex-con boxer, he gets a call from Carrie (Ivana Milicevic); she’s found a "fence" for Rabbit’s diamonds. Lucas immediately heads out to meet her, despite Job’s (Hoon Lee) warning that he’ll only end up dead. It’s actually kind of surprising that Lucas approaches Carrie with such little caution. He knows what she’s capable of and that she wants him out of town. And yet he falls for it anyway, getting drugged in the car they’re attempting to steal and carted off to a motel room where he’s handcuffed to the bedposts, left for Rabbit to find and do with him as he pleases.
While Lucas struggles to free himself before Rabbit and his muscle arrive, more crazy s*** is going on in town. This time, it’s a botched drugstore robbery turned hostage situation at the local high school. And guess whose daughter is one of the captives?
Yup, it’s Deva (Ryann Shane). While dad, Gordon (Rus Blackwell) waits outside the school, which is now surrounded by police and news crews, Carrie is hanging out on the side of a road, agonizing over her decision to give Lucas over to Rabbit. Little does she know, Lucas was able to hulk out and partially free himself. And with a little help from Job, who followed him to the motel through the tracking device he put in his phone, Lucas’ escapes and goes into sheriff mode in the high school parking lot. Carrie is shocked to see him there and Rabbit is equally shocked to not see Lucas in the motel room, which he trashes in a fit on anger.
At the high school, we get a replay of pretty much exactly what went down at the rave. Sheriff Hood puffs up his chest and prepares to walk into the belly of the beast while his deputies’ yammer on about "protocol" and "procedure." In the end, Hood saves the day and rescues Deva while putting a hole in the head of Banshee High’s former all-star point guard. Carrie thanks him by sneaking into his apartment late at night. Lucas contemplates choking and/or shooting Carrie before giving in and having sex with her.
And so we’re left to wonder a couple of things at the conclusion of this episode. Now that Lucas has saved her daughter’s life on several occasions, will Carrie try to protect him from Mr. Rabbit/Her Father? And now that Rabbit’s come to town, what are his plans for both Lucas and his daughter? And let’s not forget Kai Proctor, whose brother came to him for help with his delinquent daughter, Rebecca.
This episode sets up a number of interesting new storylines, but it felt largely like a retread of "The Rave." Even so, "Banshee" is so bombastic and pulpy it’s fun to watch even when it feels like the show is just spinning its wheels – which the hostage situation at the high school felt like, for the most part. And of course, the silver, or perhaps glittery magenta lining in every episode is Job, who is as good at stealing scenes as he is at stealing diamonds. Speaking of which, if you stuck around past the end credits, you saw the shot of him holding Rabbit’s stash. If Banshee’s most colorful new resident did what it looks like he did, this town hasn’t seen nothing yet.