The Black Donnellys TV Pilot Reviewed (NBC)

This article is part of the meta-post 4134 Words Or How The Writers Of The New Dune Novels Sold Out. This article gives a review on the upcoming show The Black Donnelly by Paul Haggis scheduled to premiere in January 2007 on NBC.

This is a new drama from Paul Haggis (Crash, 2004) about a z of Irish-American gangsters in Hell’s Kitchen. Joey Ice Cream is the narrator of the story and it is told through his perspective. Though the story is quite disjointed and told from a variety of times and places, it is quite really interesting because it is told from memory, and memory changes and is fickle.


The story starts off with Joey Ice Cream in prison trying to get a deal to not be put into general population because he would get whacked. The initial phases of the story are quite jumbled. We know that dead bodies are involved. The thing is to find out what happened.


From the first 15 minutes, it looks like the brothers are involved in one hair brained scheme to another; from kidnapping a mafia boss’s nephew to hijacking trucks full of shirts who get nicked before they try to sell them.


The story in this episode actually recounts the genesis of the Donnelly’s and how they became gangsters. I really liked the show, its dark and gritty and entertaining. And with a master like Haggis directing, you know it’a going to be good. The series premieres in January 2007.

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It is also part of the meta-post 4134 Words Or How The Writers Of The New Dune Novels Sold Out.

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Author: range

I'm mathematician/IT strategist/blogger from Canada living in Taipei.

14 thoughts on “The Black Donnellys TV Pilot Reviewed (NBC)”

  1. I have seen the pilot episode of The Black Donnellys and I have to say in all honesty that it is the greatest pilot that I have ever seen! I can not wait for this show to begin its run on NBC! I sincerely hope that it is successful and enjoys a long run on network television. I have already started a Yahoo! chat group for the show, entitled, and I fully intend to inform as many people as I can about this show and encourage them to watch and support it also.

  2. are you kidding this show is AWFUL – I was so suprised after seeing Crash and Million Dollar Baby – I really thought it would bring something to television – not I hope it gets cancelled as quickly as possilbe – YUCK – no wonder it’s ratings tanked.

  3. Well, I will just wait and see what happens in the next few episodes before really making up my mind. Pilots are notoriously hard to judge, especially when there are 13-24 episodes in a season. Maybe by episode 5 I will decide if this is really worth my while.

  4. So disappointing…really was looking forward to the show. Is it just me or was there not even one likeable character??? And, didn’t buy that they were ‘family’ — no connections…oh well…then again, I’m just a girl.

  5. I loved to new pilot to the show. I thought it was great the whole mafia-brotherhood “jersey” accent thing. The love story is pathetic, of course. However, the story about why Jimmy’s leg was ran over was heartbreaker and quite a tear jerker. Anyways, I hope the rest of the episodes are good.

  6. Love the show!! It is different than other shows and that is one of the reasons that I like it. Too many shows now are just poor carbon copies of other shows. I find the story line very interesting and, let’s face it, life isn’t always pretty or what we think it should be. I will admit that I would whack Jimmy before anyone else. What a waste of skin!! I am willing to stick with it and see where the story goes.

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