Not to be outdone by Netflix on the serial binge fest front, Amazon also has its fair share of amazing content, the latest being co-created by Bryan Cranston, Sneaky Pete was immediately an intriguing proposition for me.
Marius Jostipovic is a con-man, a confidence trickster who after ripping off mob boss Vince Lonigan, gets himself arrested and inmprisoned to avoid Vince’s grasp. In Prison, Marius befriends Pete Murphy, learning of Pete’s life and estranged family and their bail bond business. Upon his release from prison Marius assumes Pete’s identity and ensconces himself in his families life, though the threat of being discovered by Vince looms large still.
Not many shows have the knack of blowing me away with their debut season, not even Breaking Bad managed this feat. Only two shows have managed that in recent memory, one was Mr Robot, the other is Sneaky Pete. A remarkably simple premise expertly crafted & delivered by showrunner Graham Yost, it grabs you from the very first episode and refuses to let go. The dynamics between “Pete” and his supposed family are excellent, a constant state of unease hangs over scenes between them and the increasing possibility of Marius’s true identity being discovered.
Giovanni Ribisi is brilliant as Marius/Pete, his cool hand approach to con’s leaving you on edge as to just how he is going to get away with what he is doing and when will it eventually come tumbling down around him, it is a cool & nuanced performance from a great actor. It pretty much goes without saying but Bryan Cranston is excellent in this show as mob boss Vince. His scenes carrying with them a quiet, underlying menace, the threat that something awful could happen at any moment, all delivered with a disturbing amount of charm and a simmering volcano of rage that could blow at any moment, an truly amazing performance.
The boom in streaming services bagging top tier TV shows is gathering pace and with so much to pick from, only the truly exemplary will stand out from the pack, in its first season I believe that Sneaky Pete has done just that. It’s riveting, addictive and utterly compelling. If you haven’t, check this out as soon as you can, you won’t be sorry.
Sneaky Pete Season 1 is currently streaming on Amazon Prime.