Noted New Jersey nihilist, uh former journalist, Lloyd Nelson suggested I write about the second season of HBO’s True Detective for shits, giggles and page views. Told me, I would have to pay him for his next good idea. Alas, I am waiting for the hedge fund millions to roll in, not to mention Good Idea Numero Dos, before I fork over any bit coin.
In the weeks leading up to its premiere, the True Detective Season Two Kinda Sucks narrative became all the rage among critical types. Stories circled about creator Nic Pizzolato’s insufferable auteur act, this season’s lack of compelling characters and its predilection for flyover shots of L.A. instead of anything plot-related. This critical piling on served as a stark contrast to the critical love fest that showered Season One.
It’s too early to brand the show DOA. I mean, Matthew McConaughey’s Rust Cohle from the first season is not coming to save it with his unique brand of nihilism but Colin Farrell’s Ray Velcoro, he of the impressive ‘stache and bolo tie collection, will find me and break my face if I write this season off too soon. Ah, yes. Living in fear of crooked police. That’s not anything we’ve heard about in 2015.
Here’s 10 thoughts from True Detective Season 2 Episode 1 ranging from the inane to the profound (uh, maybe not). Here’s a good time to stop reading if you haven’t watched the episode because spoilers will rear their heads.
1. Why is Colin Farrell’s overweight, wuss child a ginger? And why didn’t he take a paternity test for said ginger? Are gingers not worthy of Maury moments?
2. Upon seeing Taylor Kitsch on-screen my initial thought was, What the hell happened to Texas forever? I thought we had a deal, Riggins. I guess a string of crap movies changed things. (Kitsch played football-, Texas- and alcohol-obsessed Tim Riggins on “Friday Night Lights.”)
3. Oh, I get it. Kitsch is playing another troubled piece of eye candy, this time as motorcycle cop Paul Woodrugh. Enjoy ladies.
4. Vinci’s population confuses me. How does a “town” with 95 people in it have a police department or a city manager? Seems like this would fall under a county’s jurisdiction. I’m glad it doesn’t because then we wouldn’t get Farrell in all his violent, drunken Mick glory. (I can call an Irishman a Mick, right? I mean, I have red hair.) PS: Maybe this plot involving a handful of people living in a den of major corruption isn’t so far-fetched.
5. Am I the only person who thinks T-Bone Burnett played L.A. Noire for inspiration on this show’s soundtrack?
6. Does Vince Vaughn, in the role of Cali mobster Frank Semyon, possess the darkness to be the villain this season? Maybe it’s a moot question. Farrell’s Velcoro is already beating the shit out of people, taking bribes and calling his ginger kid names. He’s my bet for True Villain, if not True Detective.
7. Rural Louisiana and its swamps played a major role in last season’s storyline. Doubt California’s coast will compare in that manner. Still, I love the flyovers involving the beach, the surf and the mountains in the distance.
8. What’s the over/under on people Rachel McAdams’ Ani Bezzerides will punch-out this season? 2.5? Will two of those people be family members (hippy dippy father and porn actress sister)? I’ll take the over and say yes.
9. All four leads lost their shit in Episode One and no one particularly stood out as a good or likable character. So I’m going to root for the least likable character while watching future episodes. Don’t let me down, Farrell.
10. The city manager’s killer is … not important. As was the case in Season One, it’s about the journey more so than the destination. So, sit back and enjoy watching Farrell and McAdams punch people’s lights out.