Steven Knight is among the more prolific screenwriters who are currently active; having written multiple films over the past couple of years alone (Allied, Burnt, Pawn Sacrifice, and so forth), in addition to his ongoing work on the historical drama TV series that he created, Peaky Blinders. Knight is also working on the upcoming Lisbeth Salander film sequel The Girl in the Spider’s Web and co-created the FX TV mini-series Taboo with Tom Hardy – who previously starred in Knight’s acclaimed 2013 one man show (or, rather, one man driving a car movie) Locke – as well as the latter’s father, Chips Hardy.
Taboo stars Tom Hardy as James Keziah Delaney, a man who mysteriously returns from Africa to London circa 1814 to inherit his father’s shipping empire, having long been presumed dead. The promos that FX has released for Taboo thus far have been heavy on gothic atmosphere and glimpses of the disturbing events that transpire during the mini-series – both during James’ time in Africa and his return to England; where he discovers that this legacy is “a poisoned chalice” and that he has “enemies in every dark corner” of his old home, as the official synopsis that FX has released for Taboo (enigmatically) puts it.
A new minute-long promo for Taboo titled ‘Little Man’ (see the video above) doesn’t break away from that established marketing approach for the mini-series; once again highlighting its darkly rich visuals and ominous tone, as well as the big names involved behind the scenes (including, producer Ridley Scott) and the main cast members. That is also the case with three additional thirty-second promos for Taboo that FX has now released online, under the titles ‘Dear James’, ‘Evil’ and ‘The Prestige’. You can check out those clips, below.
FX, as a network, has come into its own over the past few years in particular, offering such varied and acclaimed TV series as Fargo, American Crime Story and The Americans, among others. By the look of Taboo, coupled with the premiere of the X-Men TV series Legion and the anticipated third season of Fargo (among other returning anthology shows), should allow the network to only further cement its reputation in 2017 – as a network that offers the sort of darkly weird, yet compelling small screen storytelling unlike what any other major cable entertainment providers have on their original programming slate.
Hardy similarly appears to be in tip-top acting form in Taboo, delivering an intense and fittingly strange performance as the disturbed (?) James Delaney. The story here is clearly a meaningful one for Hardy too, as evidenced by the fact that it’s a tale that he developed with his father (as well as Knight) about the themes of legacy and fathers/sons, among other things. Couple that with this mini-series’ talented cast, which includes Jonathan Pryce (Game of Thrones) and Oona Chaplin (The Hour) in key roles, and Taboo seems to have the potential to become an early-year TV sensation in the vein of, say, True Detective season 1.
Taboo premieres Tuesday, January 10, 2017 at 10 p.m. EST on FX.