‘Rectify’ season 4 reviews: Critics are ‘not ready to say goodbye’ to acclaimed SundanceTV drama

Pay attention, awards voters — time is running out to recognize SundanceTV’s “Rectify.” The critically acclaimed drama, which follows former death-row inmate Daniel Holden (Aden Young) as he struggles to adjust to life after prison, begins its fourth and final season on Wednesday, October 26.

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Though the series has yet to catch the attention of Emmy or Golden Globe voters, it has proven popular at the Critics’ Choice Awards. In 2013, they nominated Abigail Spencer for Best Drama Supporting Actress, and Young was nominated the following year for Best Drama Actor. Then for the show’s third season in 2015, “Rectify” received a repeat nomination for Young along with first-ever bids for Best Drama Series and Best Drama Supporting Actor (Clayne Crawford).

Those aren’t the show’s only plaudits. In 2014 “Rectify” was nominated for Best Episodic Drama Writing for the episode “Donald the Normal” at the Writers Guild Awards, and in 2015 it won the Peabody Award for excellence in broadcasting. But other awards groups are still behind the curve when it comes to honoring the show, and this is their last chance to, well, rectify that. But there’s hope: consider that the Hollywood Foreign Press ignored “Breaking Bad” for years, waiting until the show’s final season to award it Globes for Best Drama and Best TV Drama Actor for Bryan Cranston.

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Could critical raves and a cult fan base help “Rectify” score those long-awaited Globe, SAG and eventually Emmy notices? As of this writing, the final season has a perfect score of 100 on Metacritic (based on five reviews). Below is a sampling of their thoughts:

Ben Travers (Indiewire): “Season 4, which marks the all-too-soon end of ‘Rectify’s’ distinguished run, finds a fresh thematic connection for Daniel while simultaneously setting him free from past complications. More importantly, it gives Daniel an impeccably astute voice rarely heard before and never this magnified.”

[WATCH] ‘Rectify’ season 4 trailer: Are you excited to see how it ends?

Matt Brennan (Slant): “As gentle and wise as ever, ‘Rectify’ thus turns, as it approaches its conclusion, to humankind’s most fundamental questions, reexamining Sartre and Descartes in its clean, poetic vernacular. In [creator Ray McKinnon’s] hands, the familiar features of the characters’ lives — cakes and card games, fresh flapjacks and nighttime drives — assume the immanence of revelation, reaffirming the wonder, the weight, of the everyday.”

Alan Sepinwall (Hitfix): “A part of me thought [the third season] was a perfect place to stop, and that another season of this very slow, specific, gorgeous drama could risk overstaying its welcome. Two hours into the final chapter of the ‘Rectify’ story, I realize that, like Janet watching her son walk away, I’m not ready to say goodbye just yet. Thankfully, I won’t have to for another couple of months.”

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