The contemporary Western mystery series Longmire will return to A&E with its third season on Monday, June 2nd. Based on the popular novel series by Craig Johnson, the show stars Robert Taylor as Walt Longmire, a present-day sheriff in the fictional Wyoming county of Absaroka. Taylor is supported by a strong ensemble cast that includes Lou Diamond Phillips, Katee Sackhoff, Bailey Chase, Adam Bartley and Cassidy Freeman.
The series, for which writer Craig Johnson is a consultant, presents episodes with stand-alone mysteries to solve along with larger narrative threads that run thru each season. In the first season, one of the ongoing tensions was the decision by Longmire’s deputy Branch Connally (Bailey Chase) to run against Longmire in the election for sheriff. Here is a promo trailer for that first season:
The series is very adept at showcasing the strength of the contemporary Western (i.e. one set in the time period it is filmed) to explore current issues within the West and beyond. As an example, in its second season the show explored the contentious issue of fracking in the West with an episode that looked at the effects of fracking on a local Cheyenne reservation. For a review on this site of that episode visit Longmire Riding Strong.
To this writer, Longmire, set as it is in the present, can serve as a “doorway” into the larger framework of the Western genre for a demographic that may be unfamiliar with the range of the Western across a variety of mediums.
By the end of its second season, Longmire had become A&E’s #1 original drama series ever. Further information about the show can be found at the official link A&E’s Longmire.
(Copyright – Chad Beharriell)