Mayor of Kingstown is a crime thriller tv series created by Taylor Sheridan and Hugh Dillon.
You may already know of Sheridan's work from Yellowstone, 1883 and 1923, so that's the calibre of show we're dealing with here!
Available on Paramount+, Mayor of Kingstown stars Jeremy Renner and, with two seasons available, is a must-see for fans of the genre.
What Is Mayor of Kingstown About?
Not that it's a complicated show, but there are a lot of players in Mayor of Kingstown. So here goes…
The McLusky family lives in Kingstown, a town in Michigan that has five state prisons and more prisoners than residents.
The Mcluskys include Mitch McLusky (Kyle Chandler), his brother Mike Mclusky (Jeremy Renner), who works with him, their brother Kyle (Taylor Handley), a detective for Kingstown PD, and their mother Miriam (Dianne Wiest).
Mitch and Mike run a business that is, for all intents and purposes, a middleman between the gangs and law enforcement. Essentially trying to keep the peace in their town.
When Mitch is killed, Mike decides to step up and run the business. But he quickly realises that what the police want and what the gangs are willing to agree to is harder to negotiate than he ever thought.
As Mike desperately works to keep everybody happy, he actually becomes the least corrupt of them all, but that won't stop him from getting caught in the middle when everything goes very wrong.
Mayor of Kingstown Official Trailer
Is Mayor of Kingstown Worth Watching?
In true Taylor Sheridan style, Mayor of Kingstown has an almost singular voice when it comes to telling the story of the powerful McLusky family.
Set in a town where the business of incarceration is the only thriving industry, the show tackles themes of systemic racism, corruption, and inequality.
Nobody comes out of this looking good. This is not Blue Bloods, where the police are always upstanding and moralistic.
This is a much grittier look at what it takes to bring order and justice to a town that has neither. It is dark, violent, and confronting and not for the faint-hearted.
But because of that, it really is a superb drama. Jeremy Renner is excellent as Mike, a man who straddles the two conflicting worlds inhabited by gangs on one side and police on the other.
Some of the best scenes in the show are between him and Bunny Washington (Tobi Bamtefa), leader of the Crips in Kingstown. There's a stark reality to their conversations that elevates the show above just another drama.
If there is a downside, it would be that the show is almost perpetually dark. There's nothing to break the tension or even a character to really root for.
The Mayor of Kingstown lays bare the grubby underbelly of blue-collar America and does it with such grit and attention to detail that you will be gripped from beginning to end.
Who Plays Who In The Show?
Jeremy Renner as Mike McLusky, who takes over as “Mayor” after his brother's death. He is a power broker between the gangs and law enforcement.
Dianne Wiest as Mariam McLusky, the mother of the McLusky brothers and a college professor who volunteers in the female prison.
Hugh Dillon as Ian Ferguson, a seasoned, hard-nosed detective for the Kingstown Police Department and Kyle's partner.
Taylor Handley as Kyle McLusky, the youngest of the McLusky brothers and a detective who often battles with the choices he is forced to make.
Tobi Bamtefa as Deverin “Bunny” Washington, leader of the Crips in Kingstown, who has a good relationship with Mike and is the closest thing to a friend that Mike has.
Emma Laird as Iris, a smooth-talking escort who works for the Russian mafia to seduce and bribe government officials.
Derek Webster as Stevie, a detective for the Kingstown Police Department and another ally to the McLusky brothers.
Hamish Allan-Headley as Robert Sawyer, a sergeant that leads an elite team of Kingstown SWAT officers who will do whatever is necessary to get the job done.
Pha'rez Lass as P-Dog, a “Shot-Caller” and leader of the Crip inmates in the Kingstown Prison.
Aidan Gillen as Milo Sunter, a Russian mobster who is spending life in prison.
Kyle Chandler as Mitch McLusky, the oldest of the McLusky brothers, who took over the role after their father, the original “Mayor”, died.
Nishi Munshi as Tracy McLusky, Kyle's wife, who is pregnant with their son.