Western wardrobe realism in “Hell on Wheels”

November 6, 2011 § Leave a comment

Hell on Wheels

The Boston Herald reviews AMC’s new series, “Hell on Wheels,” premiering tonight at 10/9c.  Says Anson Mount, who portrays Cullen Bohannon, the show’s “squint-eyed, cigar-chomping outlaw with a conscience,” on the show’s realistic moral ambiguity:

That’s a form of squeaky-clean Western where the good guys had pressed shirts and the good guys were really, really good and the bad guys were really, real-ly bad. I’m more inter-ested in the Sergio Leone formula where everything was in a gray area.  There is no good and bad in the face of lawlessness. It’s your gut instinct against my gut instinct, and who’s to say what’s right and wrong.

That realism extends to the look and feel as well.  Says “Hell on Wheels” costume designer Wendy Partridge to the Calgary Herald:

We went to great lengths to make everything dirty and grimy. We spent several weeks making things muddy and dirty and putting creases in everything. It’s a huge undertaking.

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