The Son (TV series)
Official title card
by Philipp Meyer
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||10 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||42–49 minutes|
|Original release||April 8, 2017– present|
The Son is an American western drama television series based on the 2013 book of the same name by Philipp Meyer. The show was created and developed by Meyer, Brian McGreevy, and Lee Shipman. A 10-episode season premiered on AMC on April 8, 2017.
On May 12, 2017, the series was renewed for a second season.
- Henry Garrett as Pete McCullough, Eli's youngest son
- Zahn McClarnon as Toshaway, a Comanche tribal chief who views young Eli as a son after capturing him
- Jess Weixler as Sally McCullough, Pete's wife
- Paola Núñez as María García, Pete's childhood friend who becomes complicit in some of the escalating violence in South Texas
- Elizabeth Frances as Prairie Flower
- Sydney Lucas as Jeannie McCullough, Eli's granddaughter and Pete's daughter, who becomes a key figure in the family business
Originally, Sam Neill was set to play the main character of the series, but left due to personal reasons. Pierce Brosnan was cast to replace him. The production of the series started in June 2016.
The first season has received mixed reviews. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes the series has an approval rating of 54% based on 24 reviews, with an average rating of 5.8/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "The Son's epic narrative and strong central performance are crippled by sluggish pacing, hasty direction, and superficial execution." On Metacritic, the series has a score of 57 out of 100, based 21 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
|No.||Title||Directed by||Teleplay by||Original air date||US viewers|
|1||"First Son of Texas"||Tom Harper||Philipp Meyer, Brian McGreevy and Lee Shipman||April 8, 2017||1.92|
|In 1849, young Eli McCullough and his brother, Martin, are taken captive by Comanches; the remaining family members are killed. Blaming Eli for his family's deaths, Martin becomes defiant with his captors and is killed in front of Eli. In 1915, Eli and his son Pete prepare for Eli's birthday party, while contending with cattle thieves and saboteurs of their burgeoning oil business.|
|2||"The Plum Tree"||Kevin Dowling||Daniel C. Connolly||April 8, 2017||1.92|
|In 1849, Eli's attempt to escape the Comanche camp is thwarted, and, after being punished, he becomes the Comanches' slave. In 1915, Eli and Pete debate over their captive, Cesar, whom they caught fleeing a sabotaged oil rig. Eli tortures Cesar, believed to also be linked to the thefts. Pete later escorts Cesar to a river to release him into Mexico. However, Cesar attacks Pete, forcing him to kill Cesar and secretly bury him.|
|3||"Second Empire"||Kevin Dowling||Kevin Murphy & Cami DeLavigne||April 15, 2017||1.55|
|In 1915, Eli and oldest son Phineas meet with potential investor William Philpott, who declines due to Eli's shaky finances and the unlikelihood of finding oil in the Rio Grande Valley. Back home, Pete experiences guilt over Cesar's death. In Mexico, Cesar's father-in-law, Pedro García, supplies the rebel, Aniceto Pizaña, despite future backlash from the McCulloughs. In 1849, young Eli begins training as a Comanche warrior but causes trouble when he publicly flirts with Prairie Flower, who is being wooed by another.|
|4||"Death Song"||Olatunde Osunsanmi||Smith Henderson & Philipp Meyer||April 22, 2017||1.39|
|In 1849, young Eli must help a severely wounded Comanche back to camp, while evading Texas Rangers on patrol. In 1915, María García warns Pete that something bad is going to happen. He and Eli inform the Rangers of the Mexican rebels' plan to derail a train. Eli is told to form a posse. They find tools to be used in the derailment and wait for the rebels to return. Pete captures their female scout and releases her after the rebels retreat, but is forced to kill her when she fires at one of his men. Eli assures him that her death was necessary, however, Pete surmises that a border war is beginning.|
|5||"No Prisoners"||Olatunde Osunsanmi||Brian McGreevy & Lee Shipman||April 29, 2017||1.21|
|In 1849, the Comanches sneak up on a Tonkawa camp only to find it deserted, ravaged by smallpox. Eli is ordered to gather their horses and what supplies that he can. While doing so, he finds a survivor who specifies items to take, so that the Comanche will also become diseased. Eli refuses. In 1915, the McCulloughs' notoriety from the ambush has consequences, when their homestead is attacked. Both Marie and Jeannie seek help, and it arrives with Pedro's men fending off the rebels. Eli sees oil on Jeannie's horse and asks what route she traveled.|
|6||"The Buffalo Hunter"||Jeremy Webb||Julia Ruchman||May 6, 2017||1.30|
|Young Eli finds a group of white hunters skinning some buffalo. He tells them that he recently escaped a Comanche camp, and the hunters vow to protect him, but Eli is merely a distraction for a Comanche raid. The lead hunter and a girl are taken captive. The hunter is later tortured, and Eli secretly puts him out of his misery. In 1915, Charles McCullough learns that Ramon, a farmhand, might have led the rebels there for the attack. Ramon is hanged in front of a remorseful Charles. Eli and Jeannie search for and find the oil seep, but it is in the Garcías' territory.|
|7||"Marriage Bond"||Jeremy Webb||Kevin Murphy & Julia Ruchman||May 13, 2017||1.17|
|Upon learning of Ramon's death, Eli suggests to Pete that Charles leave the ranch. Pete takes Charles and Jeannie to the McCullough home in Austin. Charles admits his complicity, but adds that he didn't expect Ramon would be hanged. Pete tells Sally that he cannot rise above his family's violent tendencies and suggests the children remain in Austin. A troubled María visits him, and they have sex. In 1850, Eli tries to help Ingrid, the captive girl, who wishes to die, but Prairie Flower warns him to stay away from her. While hunting, Eli is approached by Charges the Enemy, who is courting Flower. Charges threatens the two of them before knocking Eli off a cliff.|
|8||"Honey Hunt"||John David Coles||Daniel C. Connolly||May 20, 2017||1.26|
|Charges returns to camp without Eli, stating that Eli escaped during the hunt. Flower wishes to search for Eli, but Toshaway informs her that her father accepted Charges' dowry and the wedding will soon happen. She sneaks off to search for Eli, but Charges stops her by saying all supplies will be cut off from her family if she continues. She relents and they marry. In 1915, Pete and María plan for a future, once they are free from their respective spouses. Eli and Phineas attend a party for a judge, whom Phineas manages to bribe to help secure the oil seep on the García property. Alone, Eli is approached by the daughter of an Apache who followed him after Eli slaughtered a village in 1881. Eli states that her people killed his wife and son, and she shoots him. He envisions his younger self helping him die but Phineas saves him.|
|9||"The Prophecy"||Tom Vaughan||Julia Ruchman||June 3, 2017||1.06|
|Young Eli, with his injured leg, finds a settler named Maggie at her camp. She nurses him back to health, but her solitude all these years after leaving her group seems to have affected her mind. However, she tells his fortune, mentioning his long life and having three sons. When he later learns of her plan to turn him in for a reward, he escapes as she curses his sons' legacy. In 1915, Eli tells Phineas that his injury was a sign and calls off the bribe and oil scheme, at the risk of losing the ranch. Eli later finds a saloon burning; Phineas admits to it, only because Eli secretly wanted to frame Pedro García. Pete finds a jar of oil in Jeannie's room and questions Eli, who reveals the truth of trying to get rid of Pedro. Pete leaves the ranch.|
|10||"Scalps"||Tom Vaughan||Philipp Meyer, Brian McGreevy, & Kevin Murphy||June 10, 2017||1.16|
|With the rumor that Pedro García's men were seen running from the saloon fire, Eli declares war and rallies an angry mob. Pete arrives at the García home to warn them. He suggests fleeing, but Pedro declines and prepares his men. Pete assists them and fires upon his father's army. Many casualties occur on both sides; all of the Garcías are killed, except María who flees with Pete as seen by Phineas. When Eli relates the battle to his family, Sally asks about Pete. Alone, Phineas tells her the truth. The McCulloughs are later granted the García property. In 1850, Eli returns to the Comanche camp seeking revenge on Charges. Toshaway asks the elders for compensation, and they give him four horses; he also gives Eli a pistol of his own. Eli still pines for Flower. Later, on a hunt, the Comanches are attacked by Texas Rangers. Charges is shot, but Eli prevents a Ranger from scalping Charges who dies from his wounds. Eli then scalps the Ranger. Both eras mirror each other, as Young Eli and Toshaway watch many settlers cross below them and Jeannie and her grandfather look over their newly acquired land.|
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