Tuesday, August 11, 2015

True Detective Season 2: My Least Favorite Season

true detective season 2

I love a good ending. Sometimes, that's why I'll hang on to a series or a movie that I'm only halfway enjoying. I'm just hoping the whole will be redeemed by that one part at the end where everything will come together or not, but somehow give the entire affair a depth I hadn't considered until that moment, even though it makes perfect sense. This did not happen with season 2 of True Detective. I was hopeful from the first episode, but by the end, even though there were some good moments, this season was very disappointing.

Rachel mcadams
Almost an interesting character
I wouldn't say it was as horrible as many are making it out to be, though. I actually kind of liked the over the top dialogue. I'm still convinced much of it was written that way intentionally. I could be wrong. I don't know. What mainly frustrated me about this season was that the mystery itself, the vast conspiracy at the heart of it all, was somehow simultaneously too confusing and boring. I guess that's a feat, but it would only make sense of there was something else keeping it together. There wasn't. In the end, I think I just stopped caring about the mystery way before the final episode.

At a certain point, by the last episode, you just wonder why the characters themselves are even motivated to see this through to the end. They had many opportunities to just walk away. And then the deaths that we get for Ray (Colin Farrell) and Frank (Vince Vaughn) are kind of senseless and unnecessary. Frank in particular, who was painted as a street wise survivor, winds up making the dumbest move possible in the worst situation imaginable. It was completely avoidable. To see it then drawn out as if to show what a tough guy he is, is a lesson in pointless irony, hammered into you by the heaviest hammer of Thor himself.

Vince vaughn and colin farrell
A lot of staring happened.

Overall, the series had some moody moments that the internet has deemed horrible, but I actually kinda liked. There was a David Lynchesque conversation between Ray and Frank in a run down bar while a singer/songwriter (Lera Lynn) sings the most on the nose, depressing song ever called "My Least Favorite Life."  The characters often pause so we can clearly hear the lyrics and while it's all very odd, I thought it worked, even if it was a bit out of place. Later, we see Ray have a near death hallucination in this same bar. If only there were more of these touches that actually went somewhere, I think this might have reached Season 1's greatness.

colin farrell
Spoiler alert: nothing happened.
I'm still not really clear about the ultimate conspiracy. There was an orgy at one point that I guess we're supposed to be disgusted by because the women were being victimized, except the one woman they "rescue" from it makes it clear she was there by choice as most everyone else seemed to be. So that never came close to anything from season 1 at all. I think there was some ritual murders, but if so, it was irrelevant, so again, I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be creeped out by. There was a developer buying up land for a railway(?) and somehow there was Russian mob involvement. And Mexican gangs who shot up several blocks worth of people in the very exciting, but apparently unnecessary, shootout at the halfway point.

I don't know. If there's a third season, I'll still watch it. I like the concept of it being a whole new deal each time. They can't all be winners, but it kinda sucks that the second one kinda sucks.

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