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Hell on Wheels is a gritty modern drama about bringing a new technology through an inhospitable land. Set in Nebraska after the Civil War, Hell on Wheels is a new take on the Wild West. Scarred by the Civil War, yet fresh with hope, America was trying to move forward. The characters reflect the dual nature of the time; many are fleeing the ravaged east to find new hope out west, while others are dragging the horrors of the war with them.

The term Hell on Wheels is used to describe the name of the camp that follows the leading line of the railroad. This swampy huddle of canvas tents is where the modern east, with its genteel manners and finery meet the harsh realities of the lands that they have set out to conquer. The filth and mud in a sea of pristine waving grasslands is a telling juxtaposition and the perfect background for the events that unfold there.

The stories are ripped from the times and come alive as people trying to escape their pasts drag them west along the ribbons of steel. The politics of the time act as catalysts for the action, which is bold and moving. Hell on Wheels is composed of dreamers and schemers, all trying to find their place in the wild unknown.

Cullen Bohanan played by Anson Mount is the embittered revenge-driven hero who rides into Hell on Wheels seeking vengeance for the murder of his family by soldiers during the war. He is an old time southern gentleman in a world that is disdainful of him and his kind. The war has driven him west and he brings it with him wherever he goes.

Thomas Durant (Colm Meaney) known to everyone as Mr. Durant is the steel that is building the railroad. He has put his reputation and financial future into the building of the railroad. He sees in Bohanan the enforcer he needs to drive the workers harder to get the rails laid. He alone lives in opulence, a train car at the end of the line serves as his office and parlor.

The other characters are well conceived and well executed. Their stories are believable and engender compassion. Hell on Wheels is a gritty new take on a classic genre of American story telling.

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Sunday 10:00 PM et/pt on AMC
4 Seasons, 39 Episodes - Currently Airing
Action & Adventure, Drama
8.4/10
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Hell on Wheels Full Episode Guide

  • After the death of Elam, the world feels darker for Cullen. Cullen faces a dilemma.

  • Cullan defends his family. Campbell hires a new federal marshall.

  • Cullen tries to reconnect with Elam. Durant decides to put an old problem to rest his way.

  • Following a bear attack, Elam struggles to survive in a Comanche village and make his way back to Cheyenne.

Hell on Wheels News

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"The Walking Dead." "Mad Men." "Breaking Bad." While AMC has recently done a pretty lousy job as of late at keeping the cast and crews of its highly rated and critically acclaimed shows happy, there's no denying the network's prowess at picking quality programming options. That's just one of the reasons the network's latest original drama "Hell on Wheels" sounds so promising.

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