Seasons 1 & 2 Now Streaming!

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Anti-Mafia Squad Season 2 now streaming on MHz Choice! 

Reality confounds in Anti-Mafia Squad, with things never as they seem. Season 1 ended with Deputy Chief Ivan Di Meo, supposedly a traitor and supposedly mortally wounded, getting shot by bad guy Trapani and falling off a dock into the sea. Also by the end of Season 1, Claudia Mares and Rosy Abate are united in their commitment to fight the Mafia through law enforcement. Got that? Too bad! Time for Season 2 and a new batch of assumptions.

One thing remains the same: Anti-Mafia Squad Season 2 continues the epic saga of civil servants determined to bring the Palermo Mafia to justice. It begins with a shootout between some Mafiosi and a government SWAT team. Cooler heads do not prevail during the operation and both of Rosy Abate’s remaining brothers get killed. BTW, Claudia Mares’ Anti-Mafia team has changed, with the only holdover from Season 1 being the senior policeman, Alfiere (Antonino Bruschetta).

If you’re like me and somewhat shoot-‘em-up avoidant, you may wonder what’s for a pacifist to enjoy in Anti-Mafia Squad Season 2. Actually, plenty.

Two of the best villains we’ve seen in a long time are in this season. As literature fans know, villains are always more interesting than the good guys, and two in Anti-Mafia Squad Season 2 stand out. Credit, of course, goes to the writers, but the actors bring terrific performances.

Handsome, cultured, impeccably dressed Filippo De Silva (Paolo Pierobon) is the dirty federal investigator deeply entrenched with Palermo’s Mafia. He and his boss (also a traitor) compare notes in a Turkish bath, where they can’t be bugged – a la Michele Placido and Bruno Cremer in Season 4 of the classic Italian Mafia drama The Octopus. (All ten seasons of The Octopus will be available on MHz Choice later this year – get ready!) At the Duomo, De Silva presents himself flawlessly as a concerned civil servant. He comes to his government position by way of the military, having served in a Serbian group involved with ethnic cleansing in Croatia. Circumstances throw him together with the Colombian drug kingpin on the run, Gaetano Lipari (Alessio Caruso) and it’s a match made in hell. Hangdog Lipari is the ultimate sleeper – appearing low-key until the second you realize he’s a cobra. For the sake of avoiding spoilers, let’s just say he and De Silva need each other and their scenes together are a feast of delicious malevolence. Lipari has a reputation for occasionally killing people with his bare hands and we are treated to that twice in the season. After one of those moments, he continues what he was doing – cooking at the barbecue – and impulsively pops a sausage in his mouth. Understandable – impromptu murders can be so stressful!

Another great story arc is the relationship between Rosy Abate (Giulia Michelini) and Claudia Mares (Simona Cavallari). It starts out so well in season 1 – Rosy fresh from her life in the US, ready to marry her American boyfriend in the presence of her Sicilian family. Policewoman Claudia has maintained a relationship with her and is anxious to support and protect the young woman she rescued long ago from a burning car.

From left to right: Simona Cavallari and Giulia Michelini, Anti-Mafia Squad

In Season 2, however, Rosy becomes a monster consumed by bitterness and the lust for revenge. She throws herself into her new role as head of a major Mafia family, under the guise of heading up an export company. She’s also extremely attracted to Claudia’s boyfriend, Deputy Inspector Ivan De Meo, whose loyalties she thinks lie with her and the Mafia… so there’s that.

(From left to right: Simona Cavallari, Giulia Michelini and Claudio Gioè, Anti-Mafia Squad

At the end of the season, after eight episodes of intrigue and murder, love and betrayal, the two women finally square off in a showdown at a quarry (which happens to be gorgeous). The scene does not disappoint… the ladies have a lot to say to each other!

Some familiar faces in this season are Davide Lo Verde and Peppino Mazzotta from Detective Montalbano, who play a low-level Mafioso and Calabrian Mafioso don, respectively.

From left to right: Davide Lo Verde, Peppino Mazzotta, Luca Zingaretti, Detective Montalbano

You might also recognize Aurora Quattrocchi from Episodes 6 and 7 playing the gracious Sicilian farm wife who offers shelter to Rosy. MHz Choice viewers will remember her as Luca Zingaretti’s distraught mother from Borsellino: 57 Days.

From left to right: Aurora Quattrocchi, Luca Zingaretti, Borsellino: 57 Days

So sit back, relax, enjoy the wonderful Italian design elements and Sicilian scenery and follow the story. Remember that hardly anyone in this drama plays nice but at least they look good, take note of what they’re eating and drinking because it looks GREAT and brace yourself whenever a man on a scooter drives up… and you’ll be all right.

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