Previously on “Sneaky Pete”: Conman Marius Josipovic (Giovanni Ribisi) befriends Pete Murphy (Ethan Embry) when they become cellmates. When Marius is released, he decides to assume the identity of his still incarcerated friend to evade the wrath of a local gangster. But to successfully assume his identity, he’s going to have to convince Pete’s estranged family and immerse himself in their lives.
With a show that calls upon the creative talents of Bryan Cranston, David Shore, Graham Yost and Seth Gordon, a lot was expected of “Sneaky Pete” and Season 1 delivered in spades. However, as with the fabled ‘difficult’ second album, the show has followed the well-worn path of many before it by not bringing anything new to the table and, as a result, it’s starting to feel a little stale.
We still get the will they/ won’t they realise tension involving Pete’s and his true identity but after some 20 episodes, it’s starting to feel a little drawn out. There are some dicey moments, a few shootouts, etc. although yet again Pete’s family appear to go from scrape to scrape with little impact or consequence. The con is largely the same and “borrows” heavily from the Oceans film franchise.
At the very least, the show does introduce a new bad guy, Serbian war criminal Luka Delchev (John Ales) who does bring some genuine menace, an ingredient season 1 was missing and is possibly the high point of season 2. Both Giovanni Ribisi as Marius/Pete and the always excellent Margo Martindale as Pete’s grandmother continue to thrill, but the support are still more hit and miss. Peter Gerety’s Otto – Pete’s grandfather – continues to annoy, and ‘real’ Pete feels mostly redundant and reduced to a comedy sidekick.
I had high hopes for this second season and while the finale hints at what could be a cracking third, this does feel like more a season 1.5 and doesn’t really pick up traction until the final few episodes.
Watch this if you liked: “Breaking Bad”, “Ozark”, “Ocean’s Eleven”, “Ocean’s Thirteen”.