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The fourth season of FX’s “Fargo” was originally scheduled to premiere in April of 2020 — nearly three full years since the series’ third season ended. But after a five-month COVID-related delay, the critically acclaimed anthology is returning to FX for Season 4 on Sunday, September 27 at 9 p.m. on the network.
This year’s installment stars Chris Rock as the head of a Kansas City crime syndicate in the 1950s, plus an all-star cast (as usual) that includes Jason Schwartzman, Glynn Turman, Jessie Buckley, Timothy Olyphant, Ben Whishaw, and E’myri Crutchfield.
You can watch Season 4 on Sunday nights at 9 p.m. on FX via your cable provider of choice, including Sling TV, an app-based live TV service that offers a basic “Sling Blue” package with up to three streams starting at just $30 a month. You can sign up for Sling TV here (and investigate the different channel packages and add-ons that start at $5).
Each episode of Season 4 will also land on the network’s FX on Hulu hub the day after it airs. You can sign up for Hulu here — plans start at just $5.99 a month or $59.99 a year for access with ads. It’ll cost $11.99 per month for ad-free access, and ad-supported Hulu with live TV costs $54.99 a month (go ad-free for $60.99 per month). The company also offers packages that include Disney+, ad-supported Hulu, and ESPN+ for $12.99 a month, which you can sign up for here.
Debuting in 2014 from creator Noah Hawley, “Fargo” is an adaptation of the 1996 Oscar-winning Coen brothers film about a small-town cop’s murder investigation.
Wrote IndieWire’s Ben Travers in his review of the first season, “While there are a few similarities in archetypes between the two creations, the miniseries’ mimics the movie’s tone and theme and not its story or structure. Yes, there’s a pair of hitmen dispatched from Fargo to take care of some business in a rather grizzly fashion. Yes, there’s a man plotting to kill his wife (kind of). Yes, there’s a silly-sounding cop who’s much smarter than her voice implies. Yet these are entirely different people than the ones played by Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare, William H. Macy, and Frances McDormand in the film version, meaning there’s really no need to identify “what makes the television version unique.” It’s all — pretty much — brand new. And it’s what binds them together that truly makes both shine anywho.”
Season 2, wrote IndieWire, delved further into the exploration of good and bad. “Talking about ‘Fargo’ beyond its existence as first a film and then a TV show involves trying to discern what that word/idea/title means for a narrative. And from the cheap seats, what seems to be at the core of ‘Fargo’ is a clash of innocence and sin, good and evil.”
The third season also investigates that duality, wrote Travers: “Rather than the ‘gotcha!’ moments or gory abominations dominating studio horror franchises, what’s frightening in ‘Fargo’ is a blend of good intentions and bad ideas escalating beyond control. Yet unlike many horror films, what keeps us coming back to ‘Fargo’ is that Hawley’s stories are always focused more on the good in people than the bad. We’re not tuning in to see the carnage, but to see who can escape it.”
Season 4 of “Fargo” “centers on a slowly escalating gang war between two American minorities: an Italian crime family trying to extend into the Midwest and a local Black mafia looking to hold onto their territory. The two groups are only the latest to barter for control over the local area’s lucrative illegal trades,” wrote Travers in his review of the new episodes.
While the previous three “very good to outstanding” seasons of the Emmy-winning series have focused on the battle between good and evil, Season 4 isn’t quite as black-and-white.
“In examining the not-so-United States through a new prism — namely, racism and how our country’s original sin stains every facet of the American dream — Season 4 offers a grim twist on the series’ fundamental premise,” wrote Travers. “The violence and destruction brought on by greed and prejudice come from everywhere you look; there’s not one big bad, but many bad men. They’re not all evil, but they share the same hateful flaw, which not only warps their common goal of financial success, but casts an inescapable cloud of bigotry over the Kansas City sky.”
He continued, “In expanding his traditional conflict beyond two clear representatives, showrunner Noah Hawley makes the story a bit slower, his arcs a bit wider, and the overall tone less cheeky. Another exemplary cast elevates wordless gestures and already witty lines into exciting entertainment, with Jessie Buckley and Glynn Turman being the overall breakouts, but this version of ‘Fargo’ feels bleaker than any that preceded it — which, in 2020, feels exactly right.”