Six weeks after the events of the second season, the first steps of civilisation and law begin to enter the ‘town’ of Deadwood – an illegal settlement, a violent and uncivilised outpost that has attracted a colourful array of characters looking to get rich.
These range from outlaws and entrepreneurs to ex-soldiers and racketeers, Chinese labourers, prostitutes, city dudes and gunfighters.
Among the settlers are ex-lawman Seth Bullock, the legendary gunfighter Wild Bill Hickok and Machiavellian saloon owner Al Swearengen. In the third season, the interests of larger, more powerful entities are also brought to bear - in particular, Hearst and his mining company.
Deadwood prepares itself for its first elections as it enters the Dakota territory, with Seth Bullock versus the Sheriff and Sol Star versus the Mayor.