“I spent 15 years picturing this day, and I got to tell you, this is not how I saw it playing out,” Lucas Hood (played by Antony Starr, “Rush”) tells his ex-lover — understating things just a little bit — in the new Cinemax action series “Banshee,” premiering at 9 p.m. Friday.
Immediately upon his release from state prison, Lucas has a busy day that would tucker out any ex-con. He hits a bar, steals a car, gets in a chase and shoot-out in Manhattan, boosts a motorcycle, stalks his ex-lover in the rural Pennsylvania Dutch town that gives the series its title, and kills two guys in a bar fight. Oh, and by nightfall, he's the town's sheriff.
The premise of the show, executive produced by Alan Ball (“True Blood”), may seem a little preposterous and over the top, but that's what makes it engrossing and fun. Like its Cinemax series brethren “Strike Back” and “Hunted,” “Banshee” is a serious drama that doesn't take itself too seriously.
“You have to buy into the heightened reality of the show,” Starr says. “One of the great things about the show is that when we have very serious moments, that we have just a pinch of something else, a pinch of color, just to remind us that it's not real. We are existing in this heightened universe.”