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TV Review: True Detective: Season 2, Episode 2

TV True Detective: Season 2, Episode 2
06.28.2015
8 10

Season 2, Episode 2: Night Finds You

SUMMARY: The investigation into Ben Caspar’s demise uncovers his more unsavory side. Meanwhile, Frank Semyon (Vince Vaughn) finds himself backed into a corner financially. 

REVIEW:  It’s unfortunate that last week’s episode was so coolly received as – while not quite in the same league as the first season – it was still pretty absorbing stuff and a promising start to a new season. Episode two picks up on that promise. By necessity, a lot of exposition was packed into that first hour, but now show runner/writer Nic Pizzolatto has gotten to the business at hand – namely uncovering the grisly details behind Caspar’s murder.

 

One thing that’s been immediately apparent about season two is that – compared to the first – it seems streamlined and simplified. While threads are exposed here that should lead into some pretty sordid territory, it seems unlikely that we’re going to be delving into any deep philosophical territory. This is perhaps fitting, and none of the protagonists this season are cut from the same Rust Cohle-cloth, but rather than being disappointing this is actually quite liberating as it gives this second season its own identity. Whatever it is, it can’t be said that season two isn’t distinctly different from the first.

While episode one clearly established the fact that all the main characters were “tortured” episode two makes them slightly more personable. It’s interesting that perhaps the most sympathetic guy is turning out to be Vaughn’s mobster, with the episode opening with him telling his wife (the absolutely amazing Kelly Reilly) a chilling story about his childhood when his gambler father left him unattended in a cellar for days where he was feasted on by rats. His desperation to remain financially solvent while maintaining an air of respectability will likely back him into a corner in a big way and it’ll be exciting to see what lengths he goes to in order to obtain his dream of legitimacy.

Colin Farrell’s Ray Velcoro seemed to be the most divisive guy last week, and while he’s certainly not softened here, it’s interesting how little effort he puts in to hiding his corruptibility when paired with Rachel McAdams’ Bezzerides. Rather than bristling at being made a secondary investigator, it’s interesting that Velcoro seems gung-ho to actually be a good partner to her, even admitting to her that he’s undependable and possibly corrupt.

 

The Farrell/McAdams relationship is likely as close as we’re going to get to Harrelson/McConaughey, with the two even having some signature “drive and talk” scenes, but the two seem almost immediately in tune with each other which is a departure. McAdams will likely emerge as the closest we’re going to get to a heroine with her being the one person here who actually seems devoted to solving the case. She also has a couple of great Pizzolatto-lines where she explains to Velcoro why she carries around a bunch of knives – nicely acknowledging the legitimate threat a slightly built woman such as her faces when going head-to-head with hulking perps.

Like last week, the character who’s the hardest to fathom is Taylor Kitsch’s patrolman – Woodrugh. Pressed into being an investigator, he’s a tough character to figure out but a huge clue is uncovered this week when he tells Farrell’s boozing partner (a scene-stealing W. Earl Brown) about a pass made at him by a bank employee and his extremely homophobic reaction. The knowing way Brown played his end of the scene is priceless and Kitsch’s homophobia mixed with his sexual dysfunction makes it seem like the character is closeted, adding an extra wrinkle to the part.

Hopefully, now that we’re further into the second season, viewers and fans will cut Pizzolatto some slack and start to accept the show on its own merits. Certainly, this was another good episode and I imagine that ending of this week’s installment will all but guarantee even the most pessimistic and critical viewers will be tuning in to ep three. At any rate season two is shaping up nicely and I can’t wait to see what surprises Pizzolatto has in store for us.

Source: JoBlo.com

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11:59AM on 06/30/2015

that crystal...

was a butthole right? The doc was talking about how he was "passive" and i took that as meaning he was submissive and probably enjoyed being on the receiving end...of ya know waht I mean. It was a funny scene. McAdams seemed to know what was up.

What an Ending though!
was a butthole right? The doc was talking about how he was "passive" and i took that as meaning he was submissive and probably enjoyed being on the receiving end...of ya know waht I mean. It was a funny scene. McAdams seemed to know what was up.

What an Ending though!
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12:34AM on 06/30/2015

Theme seems familiar........

Why does this season....the theme for that matter remind me of Mulholland Falls??
Also, that crystal rock on the Dr's desk resembled a vagina.
Why does this season....the theme for that matter remind me of Mulholland Falls??
Also, that crystal rock on the Dr's desk resembled a vagina.
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12:35PM on 06/29/2015

Super spoilers

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10:30PM on 06/29/2015
Sorta wish I could un-click that link
Sorta wish I could un-click that link
11:30AM on 06/29/2015

Awesome episode!

The ending was crazy - totally didn't see that coming. This season is fantastic so far, and it has separated itself beautifully from season 1 by creating its own identity. Love the characters, especially Farrell's Velcoro. If this season continues to climb upwards and have a good second half, then I think it's safe to say this show has placed itself in the pantheon of all-time truly great television.
The ending was crazy - totally didn't see that coming. This season is fantastic so far, and it has separated itself beautifully from season 1 by creating its own identity. Love the characters, especially Farrell's Velcoro. If this season continues to climb upwards and have a good second half, then I think it's safe to say this show has placed itself in the pantheon of all-time truly great television.
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5:15AM on 06/29/2015
That ending...OMFG ,CRAZY! 2nd thought about the ending,"For the watch!" lol
That ending...OMFG ,CRAZY! 2nd thought about the ending,"For the watch!" lol
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12:00PM on 06/30/2015
hah yea, I thought to myself "well this show is taking from the GoT school of thought"
hah yea, I thought to myself "well this show is taking from the GoT school of thought"
12:22AM on 06/29/2015

Definitely living up to its name.

Great review, Chris.

The trouble with an anthology series is that if one season is seen as groundbreaking and as critically acclaimed as the first season of this show was, everyone's going to be clamoring for more of the exact same and disappointed when it's not which, by the nature of an anthology series, it can't and should not be.

I'm glad that they've taken this in a fresh direction- and amazed at how masterfully they've done it. A season of watching one of these actors trying to be
Great review, Chris.

The trouble with an anthology series is that if one season is seen as groundbreaking and as critically acclaimed as the first season of this show was, everyone's going to be clamoring for more of the exact same and disappointed when it's not which, by the nature of an anthology series, it can't and should not be.

I'm glad that they've taken this in a fresh direction- and amazed at how masterfully they've done it. A season of watching one of these actors trying to be this season's Rust Cohle would have just been sad and inevitably underwhelming. Pizzolatto and co. have created a new set of fascinating characters with their own pathos and demons and just 2 episodes into this season, this show is already proving its status as one of the most consistently compelling TV series to come along in quite some time. And almost like an actor's rehab- McAdams, Vaughn and Farrell were all once actors to look out for but have been stuck in mostly soulless studio pictures; and Kitsch is still washing off the stink of 2 back to back major bombs. McConaughey's resurgence was years in the making but this show was definitely a major stepping stone on that renaissance. I hope it reignites that fire in this season's cast, especially Colin Farrell who truly excels in smaller, character-driven films.
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12:01AM on 06/29/2015
Loving this new season. The four main cast members have an excellent dynamic (with Ferrell's character being my favorite) and am excited to see where the story goes next.

I don't understand why people are comparing this season to season one after ONLY two episodes. And it would be boring to watch as if it was the same as season one.
Loving this new season. The four main cast members have an excellent dynamic (with Ferrell's character being my favorite) and am excited to see where the story goes next.

I don't understand why people are comparing this season to season one after ONLY two episodes. And it would be boring to watch as if it was the same as season one.
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12:06AM on 06/29/2015
I agree dude, Velcoro is definitely my favorite character as well, and Colin Farrell played him perfectly.
I agree dude, Velcoro is definitely my favorite character as well, and Colin Farrell played him perfectly.
9:54PM on 06/28/2015
Miami Vice Colin Farrell > True Detective Colin Farrell
Miami Vice Colin Farrell > True Detective Colin Farrell
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