Emily Blunt’s Overlooked Western Miniseries The English Deserves More Love

Emily Blunt’s Overlooked Western Miniseries The English Deserves More Love

Released exclusively on Amazon Prime, a Revisionist western miniseries called The English (2022) features an endearing protagonist who’s played by famous British actress Emily Blunt. Her character is called Lady Cornelia Locke, a headstrong Englishwoman hellbent on revenge for the untimely death of her son. Co-starring is Chaske Spencer as Sergeant Eli Whipp, also known as Wounded Wolf — his Pawnee name in translation.

Both leads perform to absolute perfection, digging deep into the details of the human condition while also sharing a remarkable rapport that flourishes into an all-time great dynamic. In part, this is thanks to showrunner Hugo Blick and his understanding of character development. On top of directing all six episodes, he also penned their original scripts. Some monumental efforts, but from the composer to the cast, everyone attached to The English proved essential to its production.

Unfortunately, their work flew under the general radar of prominence, with most fans of television being unaware of its existence. It was popular in the home country of Emily Blunt and Hugo Blick, but aside from that, few viewers tuned into this underrated western. Much to Blunt’s chagrin, and justifiably so. During a recent media tour for The Fall Guy (2024), directed by David Leitch, she spoke about The English when asked to detail a project of hers that she felt was underrated.

During a press tour for The Fall Guy with co-star Ryan Gosling, an interviewer for Independent TV inquired about which one of their projects deserved more love upon release. The answer for Gosling was Lost River (2014), an undervalued fantasy film that marked his directorial debut. He even wrote the original screenplay, but unfortunately, Lost River received lackluster reviews from critics while also underperforming at the worldwide box office.

Related: Best Ryan Gosling Movies, Ranked

Solid answer from Ryan, while Emily Blunt went with a project in which she performed as an actress: The English, created by Hugo Blick. She referred to it as, “…really shattering, and beautiful, and really unique.” Her co-star from The Fall Guy even heaped praise on The English, with Gosling also giving it his hard-earned seal of approval. And with good reason. It’s among the greatest western shows ever, let alone the most underrated.

The English Boasts a Cast and Crew of Seasoned Western Veterans

Off the bat, it’s worth noting the many members of this star-studded cast. Take Chaske Spencer, who had previously portrayed a lawman in Woman Walks Ahead (2017), while also appearing in one-off episodes of Into the West (2005) and Longmire (2012–2017). Now, he’s set to play a supporting part in Wind River: The Next Chapter, but without a doubt, The English is thus far Spencer’s greatest western.

He plays co-protagonist Eli Whipp, who’s primary goal is to stake his claim on a piece of Nebraska land that was promised by the U.S. Army.

The two join forces and traverse some gorgeous landscapes that double as dangerous terrain, rife with enemies from the Pawnee nation on top of various outlaws. Along the way, Cornelia Locke and Eli Whipp interact with some truly colorful characters, with other names among the cast including Rafe Spall, Stephen Rea, Valerie Pincher, and Toby Jones. But there’s also Gary Farmer, a bona fide western star thanks to Dead Man (1995), First Cow (2019), and Quantum Cowboys (2022).

Related: Best Emily Blunt Movies, RankedTheir roles vary in prominence, but regardless of screen time, each name performs perfectly in a highly technical western. Particularly the Englishwoman sitting atop the cast: Emily Blunt, who showcased tremendous commitment in her work as Lady Cornelia. Despite being allergic to horses, Blunt practiced riding for three months before filming, and looked like a natural once it came time to shoot. Of course, none of that even touches on her individual efforts as a troubled lead character.

Not for the faint of heart, The English is among the most harrowing stories you’ll read about today. Occasionally creepy, entirely gory, and often emphasizing poignance, viewers of The English should steel themselves for a wide range of emotions. Every once in a while, the quips from these unique personalities will also elicit laughter, and thanks to a keen adherence to story structure, this modern miniseries moves along at a pitch-perfect pace.

Punctuated by a sweeping score from Federico Jusid, whiplashing dialogue mirrors the fast-paced nature of some truly bristling action, with every episode of The English featuring some high-octane set pieces. By virtue of substantial shot value, steady camerawork, and a carefully curated color palette, it’s also a breathtaking specimen of high-caliber cinematography — around every corner of production, The English excels as an absolute triumph.

None of that even touches on the show’s award-winning costume design, but no matter the craft of a given crew member, career-defining efforts in The English stand tall as the show’s truest highlight.

Though it ended after six episodes, this miniseries featured such a powerful performance from Blunt that she’s trying her hand at another western. This time, a feature by Jaume Collet-Serra, in which she’s once again poised to portay the lead: a real-life figure by the name of Kate Warne. If her showing in The English is anything to go off of, Blunt will undoubtedly shine in the shoes of another cowgirl.


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