WGN’s Outsiders series premiere ‘Farrell Wine’ recap & review

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Recap

We get a view of the city and see a man with a gun attempting to shoot himself in the head until he sees a pack of wolves staring at him.

The next scene we see a police car driving in the small town in the Appalachia. Deputy Wade Houghton is greeted by the Sheriff and two coal contractors. They begin to talk about getting rid of the Farrell clan from Shay Mountain in order to begin construction. Houghton, having a history with the Farrells, tells them it’s a bad idea. The coal company is determined to get rid of them.

We later meet the Farrells as they are making Farrell Wine aka Moonshine and are fighting in the woods. Krake and Hasil are making the moonshine. Big Foster is fighting his son, Lil Foster, for fun with a crowd watching them. Krake interrupts the fight to let them know they need more yeast to make Farrell Wine for the coronation of the new Bren’in leader, Big Foster. Big Foster plans to take a trip to the town to get their supplies – without the permission of the current bren’in leader, his mother, Lady Ray. Big Foster’s favorite son, 8-year-old Elon wants to go with him, but Big Foster won’t let him until he’s older and gives him his necklace. Some of the men from the clan drive down in ATVs into the town and even into the store and grab what they want. Hasil distracts the cashier, Sally Ann, as the family goes through the store. Hasil flirts with her and gives her a bird carving. Later that night, Lady Ray reprimands her son for going into town without her permission.

The store manager shows the police the footage of the Farrells stealing from their store, but does not want to press charges. He does not want to get on the Farrell’s bad side. At the bar, a deputy asks Wade why they let the Farrells get away with so much. Wade warns him to not mess with the Farrells because people have died before trying to remove them from the mountain.

The next day, Wade picks up his son from his sister Ledda’s house and takes him to school. He meets with the coal company men and his other deputy to post an eviction notice for the Farrells. He posts it at the bottom of the mountain knowing they will see it. A little girl from the clan brings it to Lady Ray but cannot read it. They call for the book reader to come and read it. Lil Foster and a group of men go and collect a man locked up in a cage – the same guy in the beginning with the gun. We learned his name is Asa and he left the clan to live in the city for ten years with the ‘Losties’ and has now returned to the clan. Because he was away from the clan for so long, he was placed inside a cage for six months. She has him read the eviction and recalls a prophecy that one who returns will either be a demon or bren’in.

During the night of the coronation, Big Foster prepares to become Bren’in, but she decided to not give him her staff/position. She said it’s because of the prophecy of the demons trying to take their land. Big Foster dismisses the claims and blames it on Asa’s return. She tells they must prepare for war and they will never leave this mountain. They continue to have a party. Big Foster is pretty pissed for not becoming Bren’in and complains to a small group of his clan – including Lil Foster and healer Gwinveer. Big Foster wants to get some guns and plan to steal it from a local man who owns a bunch of guns.

The next day, Gwinveer visits Asa and feeds him some bread. They have some history growing up. She warns him that Big Foster is going to blame him and for him to be careful.

In the city, we see two city kids buying drugs from the local drug dealer. Wade stops them and takes the drugs and tells them to not buy near a school.

Big Foster and his crew take Asa to the town to steal the guns from the local man. Asa sees that Elon has stowed away on the truck. They have Elon be the eyes of the operation. Big Foster and Lil Foster break into the house and load up on guns. The old man from the other house hears it and comes out with a gun. Elon comes to try to warn his father but is dismissed to go back to the truck. As Asa takes some supplies, Big Foster was going to shoot Asa until he hears Elon screaming for him. There is a shootout as the Farrell crew drives away, leaving Asa behind. They find Elon dead in the back of the truck from a gunshot wound. The sheriff talks to Wade about the Farrells and wants him to bring them in. Wade is hesitant about it.

They have a funeral for Elon. Big Foster sees Asa at the funeral and blames him for Elon’s death. He tells him he’ll never be one of them and said he brought poison to the family. Big Foster goes to Lady Ray, who doesn’t attend the funeral because Big Foster didn’t listen to her. Big Foster is angry and suffocates his mother. She is not dead, but instead in a coma. Big Foster takes it upon himself as acting Bren’in.

Meanwhile, Hasil is waiting at the convenient store where Sally Ann works. He asks her out, but she doesn’t believe in stealing and going to jail. She leaves. Hasil goes to the bar where the drug dealer pays for Hasil’s drink. The drug dealer named Butch tries to negotiate with Hasil into making money. Hasil goes to the wine den and steals some Farrell wine to sell to Butch. He later sells it to the two boys. One of the boys, Tyler, who is the son of the coal company manager, drinks too much and gets wasted. He walks home and ends up killing his father. Tyler’s friend tell Wade that Tyler drank moonshine aka Farrell wine. Wade lies to the sheriff about what the kid was on. The sheriff feels like the Farrells were involved and expects Wade to get them off the mountain. Back on the mountain, Krake finds two jugs of Farrell Wine missing and tells Big Foster, who punishes Hasil for it by taking one of his fingers.

Asa unburies his supplies, including his ID and money. He plans to leave, but instead, burns all of his possessions and returns to the clan.

Review

This kind of story has never been told before – an off the grid clan battling against the small town aka government. Although we have been seeing this in real life with the Oregon militia and many countries around the world, it’s pretty interesting to have a television series surrounding it. These are a type of people who have their own set ways of life. They live their lives and the people in the town live their lives. Now, with a coal company wanting to come in and take the land, the Farrell clan sees it as an act of war.

The whole story is pretty interesting, especially with the war within their own clan – not just the war from the town. Deputy Wade Houghton, Asa, Gwinweer, and Lil Foster all seem to have deeper stories to their characters that we really want to know, “What is it you’re hiding?” Big Foster is an open book when it comes to his life, as well as the other characters Hasil and Lady Ray, but they are still enjoyable as characters.

The pilot is spread out pretty well, which I expected from a WGN show. They know how to pick their shows well and with characters who have a lot more depth in them. This will be another addicting series from their incredible lineup, especially with David Morse at the helm of it.

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Laura Sirikul
Laura Sirikul 1849 posts

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