Sky Atlantic’s brutal drama Gangs Of London is Peaky Blinders with a modern twist

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With its epic portrayal of city-living criminal families and internal power struggles, alleviated by the silly violence that lights up any good gangster yarn, you might think Sky Atlantic’s latest show draws heavily on Peaky Blinders school of crime drama.

But while the BBC’s hugely successful six series portrays an industrial 19th-century Birmingham still reeling from the economic impact – and inevitable human costs – of World War I, Gangs Of London relies on thriving commercial London backdrops, fast-paced cars and the kind of high-caliber rifles Tommy Shelby could only dream of.

Here, the Wallace family – ironically led by Peaky Blinders regular Joe Cole – dominate the intricate criminal underworld of the modern capital, ensuring every gang gets equal parity in a loosely strategically oriented alliance.

Gritty: Sky Atlantic's new drama Gangs of London is set to return with second series after launch to critical acclaim in 2020

Gritty: Sky Atlantic’s new drama Gangs of London is set to return with second series after launch to critical acclaim in 2020

With an intoxicating mix of Pakistani heroin traffickers, Kurdish militants, Albanian mafiosi and even a nefarious Welsh traveling community all fighting for an equal share of the pie, it’s a tough job – but one that at least seems to go smoothly at first.

However, things take off south of the river when Patriarch Finn Wallace – the head of the family for over 20 years – is murdered, paving the way for bloody retaliation as the gang seeks out those responsible for his brutal death. .

In true gangland style, Finn is seen pleading for his life hanging upside down from a tall building before being burned alive, leaving his son Sean (Cole) to act and become the leader of London’s most notorious criminal gangs.

Critically acclaimed: The new show on Sky drew 2.23 million viewers for the first episode, the channel's second largest original drama launch, after the 2019 hit Chernobyl

Critically acclaimed: The new show on Sky drew 2.23 million viewers for the first episode, the channel's second largest original drama launch, after the 2019 hit Chernobyl

Critically acclaimed: The new show on Sky drew 2.23 million viewers for the first episode, the channel’s second largest original drama launch, after the 2019 hit Chernobyl

Violent: Gritty drama has already seen 113 deaths in season one, as well as shocking scenes of torture

Violent: Gritty drama has already seen 113 deaths in season one, as well as shocking scenes of torture

Violent: Gritty drama has already seen 113 deaths in season one, as well as shocking scenes of torture

Launched in 2020, the series has left as many as 113 dead in the show’s nine episodes, as well as shocking scenes of torture as the Wallace family waged war in the English capital.

That figure replaced the first season of the notoriously graphic HBO drama Game Of Thrones, which ended with a relatively paltry 48 fatalities.

Among the 13 horrific torture incidents are a man buried in concrete and a mother having her nails and teeth removed with pliers.

Despite the carnage – or perhaps because of it – Gangs Of London drew a whopping 2.23 million viewers for the first episode, Sky Atlantic’s second greatest original drama launch, behind the 2019 hit Chernobyl.

Violent: Gritty drama has already seen 113 deaths in season one, as well as shocking scenes of torture

Violent: Gritty drama has already seen 113 deaths in season one, as well as shocking scenes of torture

Violent: Gritty drama has already seen 113 deaths in season one, as well as shocking scenes of torture

Main Man: Peaky Blinders regular Joe Cole takes charge of Gangs Of London (portrayed as John Shelby)

Main Man: Peaky Blinders regular Joe Cole takes charge of Gangs Of London (portrayed as John Shelby)

... portrayed as Sean Wallace in the Sky Atlantic drama

... portrayed as Sean Wallace in the Sky Atlantic drama

Main man: Joe Cole takes the lead in Gangs Of London (portrayed as John Shelby in Peaky Blinders, left, and Gangs of London hardman Sean Wallace, right)

Here we go: In the first hour and a half show, characters are punched 26 times, kicked seven times, four are shot and three are tortured

Here we go: In the first hour and a half show, characters are punched 26 times, kicked seven times, four are shot and three are tortured

Here we go: In the first hour and a half show, characters are punched 26 times, kicked seven times, four are shot and three are tortured

In the first hour and a half show, characters are punched 26 times, kicked seven times, four are shot and three are tortured, while the nine episodes feature 96 shootings, 30 stabbings and seven strangulation.

Created by Gareth Evans and Matt Flannery, the show returns with a highly anticipated second season in 2022.

Evans also directs most of the episodes, including every intricately choreographed marathon fight scene.

Hard as nails: The Wallace family – led by Peaky Blinders permanent Joe Cole – dominate the intricate criminal underworld of the modern capital, ensuring every gang gets equal parity in a loosely strategically oriented alliance

Carnage: The first nine episodes also feature 96 shootings, 30 stabbings and seven strangulation

Carnage: The first nine episodes also feature 96 shootings, 30 stabbings and seven strangulation

Carnage: The first nine episodes also feature 96 shootings, 30 stabbings and seven strangulation

The Horror: Gangs Of London doesn't stop with its gruesome portrayals of torture and death

The Horror: Gangs Of London doesn't stop with its gruesome portrayals of torture and death

The Horror: Gangs Of London doesn’t stop with its gruesome portrayals of torture and death

Zai Bennett, Sky UK’s Managing Director of Content: ‘Gangs of London is not only the most lavish premiere box set of this year, it is also the biggest original drama release on Sky Atlantic in the last five years.

It is dark, dangerous and we are very happy that it is coming back for a second series. Will the Wallace family rise again, will the Dumanis remain loyal to their new allies, and who is Elliot really working for?

All these questions and more await Sky viewers when Gangs of London returns to screens in 2022.

Director Gareth Evans recently spoke to LADbible about the potential for a second run, saying, “ Obviously when we were designing it, as with anything you design the long form – you’re looking at ‘what could the future hold’ and ‘where can the story continue to develop? ”

Getting Stuck: The fight scenes are often presented as carefully choreographed set pieces

Getting Stuck: The fight scenes are often presented as carefully choreographed set pieces

Getting Stuck: The fight scenes are often presented as carefully choreographed set pieces

All guns catch fire as bullets fly into the air as the Wallace family seek retaliation for the death of their patriarch

All guns catch fire: bullets fly into the air as the Wallace family seek retaliation for the death of their patriarch

All guns catch fire: bullets fly into the air as the Wallace family seek retaliation for the death of their patriarch

Hit Show: Compared to Peaky Blinders but with a modern twist, the series shocked viewers with its gory and gritty scenes, but was hailed as a runaway hit

Hit Show: Compared to Peaky Blinders but with a modern twist, the series shocked viewers with its gory and gritty scenes, but was hailed as a runaway hit

Hit Show: Compared to Peaky Blinders but with a modern twist, the series shocked viewers with its gory and gritty scenes, but was hailed as a runaway hit

In the pipeline: An official air date for the second season of Gangs Of London has yet to be officially announced

In the pipeline: An official air date for the second season of Gangs Of London has yet to be officially announced

In the pipeline: An official air date for the second season of Gangs Of London has yet to be officially announced

And I think by the time the audience gets to where the show ends in Season One, they’ll know there are so many different ways it could go.

‘I remain super vague, I’m so sorry! But there are a lot of loose ends to things that all look like … You’d be curious about where those characters end up and what becomes of them when you get to season two. ‘

Rotten Tomatoes names Gangs Of London with a 71 percent approval rating and claims it is “ one of the best shows of the summer. ”

An official air date for the second season of Gangs Of London has yet to be officially announced.

Popular: Rotten Tomatoes names Gangs Of London a 71 percent approval rating and claims it's 'one of the best shows of the summer'

Popular: Rotten Tomatoes names Gangs Of London a 71 percent approval rating and claims it's 'one of the best shows of the summer'

Popular: Rotten Tomatoes names Gangs Of London a 71 percent approval rating and claims it’s ‘one of the best shows of the summer’