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Doc Sportello

Doc Sportello's Journal
Doc Sportello's Journal
August 2, 2023

Reservation Dogs series finale season begins tonight

One of the best shows ever on television in my mind. Funny, poignant and an insight into Natve American culture never before seen on tv. A critic's take on the show, which runs on subscription service Hulu but does come on later on FX:


I’ve described it as one of a kind, and as a show that’s pushing the entire medium of TV forward on several fronts. There’s its groundbreaking representation in front of and behind the camera, as the rare show led by an all-Native main cast, writers and directors. And shot on location on Muscogee Nation land in Oklahoma, it’s infused with a sense of place, authenticity and specificity.

Visually and stylistically too, each episode feels like a uniquely transformative experience, wryly funny one minute and beautifully poignant the next. The show seamlessly moves between tones and genres, defying classification and expectations. Giving a pithy little description of it — the adventures and misadventures of four teens growing up on a Native reservation in Oklahoma — doesn’t quite do the show justice or fully capture the care and detail that has so clearly gone into every single episode. (TV and film writers and actors, including those who worked on “Reservation Dogs,” are currently on strike over more equitable pay and working conditions in the streaming era.)

In its third season, which begins Wednesday on Hulu, “Reservation Dogs” continues to soar and bring out the very best of what has made it great. Creator Sterlin Harjo recently announced his decision to end the show this season. While it’s crushing to say goodbye, the sadness is lessened by the fact that it’s nice when a show gets to end on its own terms, rather than getting unceremoniously canceled. The chance to go out on a high note is even rarer for shows created by people of color and other people from historically underrepresented communities.


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