“Banshee” took a dark(er) turn in the final minutes of its Season 2 finale when Emmett and his wife were in the process of escaping the town where they had just experienced the heartbreaking loss of their unborn baby at the hands of a skinhead attack on Emmett’s wife and were gunned down before they could escape to Florida and try to put their lives back together.
Actor Demetrius Grosse tells Zap2it that he was shocked at that turn of events and while he of course has no ill will towards the Cinemax drama, the way the show ended his character’s arc doesn’t sit well with him.
“Initially when I read the story, I was kind of appalled. I didn’t understand why the writers decided to kill off Emmett. I think it’s a non-sequitur that happens in this show,” says Grosse. “The retaliation that Emmet inflicts, I feel like on some level maybe some poeple felt like it couldn’t go unanswered, like he couldn’t just go quietly off and live a humble life? … I think that’s what the writers felt like, that there had to be some sort of answer to his retaliation and I don’t even know how to feel about that.
“I was wondering why couldn’t the retaliation end with Emmett enacting vengeance? Why did he have to get murdered for it to be a ‘happy ending’? I was really dismayed by it, I was a little put off. I didn’t know what we were really leaving our audience with at that point … because at the end of the season, now the neo-Nazi has the last word. So the people who are watching our story — you can’t say that Emmett is correct in how he avenges his wife and avenges his baby, you can’t say he’s correct, but in a sense, when you allow him to be murdered then you kind of give the neo-Nazis the upper hand in terms of the vindication. I have my own personal discrepancy with that.
We think he makes a good point because the ending certainly left a bad taste in our mouth. Up until Emmett and his wife were gunned down, we were envisioning the two of them leaving town, healing and putting their lives back together and then perhaps reappearing in Banshee in Season 3, where maybe then Emmett would have to face the men who killed his child and whom he subsequently attacked in the jail.
Grosse says that perhaps the show missed out on an opportunity by ending Emmett’s life the way it did.
“I don’t know how we are leaving our audience to feel and you have the most responsibility to your audience. Only time will tell, but I’m not sure we have [served our audience] in the way we decided to end his arc on the show. I’m not saying that he should be championed for assaulting those Nazis, but I think we did miss an opportunity to let the nobility of his vengeance have the final word. Instead, we let the murder of him have the final word.”
We posit that by killing Emmett, some of the heart of “Banshee” has been eliminated, since he was one of the best people in the town. Grosse agrees and says, “It’s not a morally sound show, so maybe that’s what they wanted to do. Maybe they wanted to make it a more dangerous place by eliminating his presence on the show.”