Ready for a summer vacation in the 1860s slums of New York City?
Copper‘s not back in action until Sunday, June 23 at 10/9c, but you can catch the latest buzz from Five Points now in the official press release below.
New York, 1865. On the brink of Lincoln’s assassination, political shifts are reshaping the country and in Five Points, immigrants are vying for power, control and a piece of the American dream. Welcome back to Copper BBC AMERICA’s highest rated original drama from the brilliant minds of Emmy®-winner Tom Fontana, Academy Award®-winner Barry Levinson, Academy Award®-nominee Will Rokos, Cineflix Studios President, Christina Wayne and new addition, Thomas Kelly (Blue Bloods). With thirteen all-new episodes, return to the unforgiving city that knows no limits, Sunday, June 23, 10:00pm ET/PT. At the center of the saga, Detective Kevin Corcoran (Tom Weston-Jones, World Without End, MI-5) is struggling to tame the wartime city while wrestling with the personal demons of his wife and best friend’s betrayal. And when Tammany Hall-backed ward leader, General Brendan Donovan (Donal Logue, Vikings, Sons of Anarchy), returns from the Civil War to restore order in the Sixth Ward, loyalties will be bought and sold, both Uptown and in the slums of Five Points.
“This season we wanted to raise the stakes and dive into the 1860s political machine by bringing in a Boss Tweed like character to shake things up,” said Co-creator and Executive Producer, Tom Fontana. “With the addition of General Brendan Donovan, we reveal a highly volatile faction of old New York City, Tammany Hall, and sink our characters into storylines including, counterfeiting, illegal Union Army recruitment, the 13th amendment and its ramifications for “freed” slaves, public health hazards and more. By making the universe a little fuller, it gave us a chance to breathe new life into the history of this great city.”
Executive Producer, Thomas Kelly adds: “19th Century New York City is a fascinating place to tell stories. Five Points was the crucible of the great human experiment with pluralistic Democracy, and by the 1860’s, all of the different tribes in the City were fighting for the American dream. It was survival of the fittest and a constant struggle was waged to determine who was going to run the city.”
At the end of last season, Corcoran left his best friend and partner, Detective Francis Maguire (Kevin Ryan, Tripping Tommy, RAW), for dead after learning of his affair with his wife; his former war comrade and wealthy industrialist, Robert Morehouse (Kyle Schmid, Arrow, Being Human), thwarted the plot by Confederate spies to burn the city; and Corcoran’s secret weapon in forensics, Doctor Matthew Freeman (Ato Essandoh, Django Unchained, Elementary), was preparing to start a family with his wife Sara (Tessa Thompson, For Colored Girls, Veronica Mars) leaving behind the demons of her brothers’ lynching during the slum’s draft riots.
One year later, we find our characters grappling with the harsh realities of their decisions. Historic changes are taking shape in 1865 America. President Abraham Lincoln is re-elected, leaving Southern radicals to stew, the 13th Amendment is passed and the Civil-War rages on. As immigrants and African-Americans continue to flood New York City, our characters are immersed in a world of vice, political corruption and incessant greed. Amidst the chaos of their worlds, an arresting figure returns to clean up The Points and reassert himself as one of the most influential and powerful men in the city’s political machine. Brendan Donovan, a brigadier General from the battlefields of the Civil War, is back to claim his place as a ward leader and gain the power necessary to raise the immigrant population out of the doldrums. Self-educated with book and street smarts, his rise through Tammany Hall as one of Boss Tweed’s most trusted lieutenants was hard won. Every bit as cunning and shrewd as any Uptown businessman, he’s an expert at maneuvering and manipulating any given situation to his advantage. A former copper and current entrepreneur, Donovan knows all too well the troubles his people suffer and sees political power as a way out. As he manipulates the likes of the Morehouses, and empowers those in The Points, every advantage to advance his agenda is exploited. And with Irish immigrants looked upon as the dregs of society and “freed” slaves just hoping to make it through the day without incident, the fight to amass power in a neighborhood filled with dread will be wrought with conflict. Donovan will enlist Corcoran’s aid in cleaning up the precinct’s image, and teach him that power and respect is the only way to shake the reprobation of the elite.
With Donovan’s presence, Corcoran sees a chance to make a difference in his ward. Now that Corcoran’s wife Ellen (Alex Paxton-Beesley, Alphas, The Firm) has returned, his affair with Madame Eva Heissen (Franka Potente, American Horror Story, The Bourne Supremacy) is over and he’s fighting to return to a sense of normalcy. However, his loyalty to the badge and his love/hate relationship with The Points often puts him back in familiar territory – away from home.
Uptown, Morehouse is engaged to widowed Elizabeth Haverford (Anastasia Griffith, Damages, Covert Affairs) and deeply in love. But his fiancé’s duplicitous acts threaten to destroy his world and new hero-status among the community elite. In Carmansville, Doctor Freeman is called back to Five Points by his mentor and teacher, with an opportunity to take over his office. With wife Sara refusing to return to the place she calls “hell,” they’ll have to make a hard choice.
Appearing this season is multiple award-winning actress, Alfre Woodard (Twelve Years a Slave, Steel Magnolias), as Hattie Lemaster, a former slave recently arrived to Five Points to start anew with her daughter Sara Freeman. Jarred by raucous city life, Hattie must learn what the true meaning of “freedom” is in the North. She’ll find herself conflicted with the road ahead and unsure of her place in the claustrophobic environment. Also joining the cast are Eamonn Walker (Chicago Fire, Oz) as legendary abolitionist leader, Frederick Douglass; Lee Tergesen (Army Wives, Oz) as Philomen Keating, a wickedly intelligent criminal mastermind whose tendency for dramatic flair is offset by a penchant for brutality and Andrew Howard (Hatfields and McCoys) as James O’Rourke, the physically intimidating yet shrewdly observant manager of a budding criminal organization.
Watch the official Season Two trailer, then hit the comments with your predictions for 1865!