AMC’s Revolutionary War drama is going to take one final Turn.
The network announced on Tuesday that Turn: Washington’s Spies has been renewed for a fourth season that will serve as its last. The 10-episode final season will air next year.
It’s all over but the shouting. John André is captured near West Point and knows he’ll be executed for plotting with Benedict Arnold. Abraham Woodhull is a show trial away from the gallows in Setauket after a delighted Capt. Simcoe finally catches him committing treason against the Crown. But how one dies still has meaning, hence the opening flashback to October 1776 when a defiant Nathan Hale was hanged as a spy by the British after the chaotic American retreat across New York.
“For the first time, [John André] is out of control and he’s out of his depth. He’s not expecting to, (A) fall in love, and, (B) make decisions of the heart instead of decisions of his mind. So his judgment is impaired and he makes wild, rash, dangerous decisions which start to backfire. And that downward spiral of his judgments and decision making is what ultimately is the demise of him.” —JJ Feild, Feb. 12, 2016
It took 29 episodes of Turn: Washington’s Spies, but Alexander Hamilton is finally in the room (in the room where it happens).
Anna: “You don’t have to tell me anything you don’t want to.”Abigail: “We’re just making conversation, right?”
What exactly is loyalty in a time of love and war? Ask that question to 10 different characters in Turn: Washington’s Spies, and you might get 10 different answers — especially from Robert Townsend, Mary Woodhull, and Abigail. Their allegiances have been tenuous, complicated, and extremely personal, but the fate of the revolution and its heroes in Setauket now seems to rely on their honor.
Bloody Mary? The Red-Handed Assassin? The Van Gogh Sniper? What shall we nickname Mary Woodhull, who learned — just like Ben Tallmadge’s Tory one-night stand — that it’s impossible to stay out of the war once it knocks on your front door. For two seasons, Mary was the albatross around Abe’s chafing neck, a wife in name only whose Loyalist political leanings conflicted with Abe’s blooming patriotism.
“You think I would trust any of you? You can’t even trust each other.” —Robert Townsend
Last week’s episode of Turn: Washington’s Spies rattled the table, with Edmund Hewlett and Anna Strong not only parting ways, but both leaving Setauket in opposite directions after their failed engagement. The show had been in need of a major shakeup, and that episode concluded with questions whether either character would ever be seen again. Only one returned for “Hypocrisy, Fraud, and Tyranny,” but as the episode unfolded, it’s clear that both have roles left to play in this season of Turn.
Wars are won on the battlefield by brave soldiers who risk life and limb for cause or country. In the Revolutionary War era, those battle-tested warriors fueling the action and political whirlwind were almost exclusively men, but women weren’t completely without influence. In fact, the natures of men and women, as depicted in Turn: Washington’s Spies, gave clear-eyed women an abundance of soft power, and in “Hearts and Minds,” it was the men who found themselves reacting — often flailing — to romantic machinations of the human heart.
George Washington believed that Divine Providence was guiding the creation of a new nation in his war against the British empire. The Almighty, however, was otherwise occupied during “Benediction,” leaving Benjamin Tallmadge and Caleb Brewster to demonstrate their inferior and borderline incompetent skills in the dark arts.
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