First off I am a true believer in the wait and see method of assessing almost anything other than pizza that has olives or pineapples on it. I know I just won't like that. However, halfway through True Detective's second season, I can't help but wonder if it's safe to call this season less than, if not just entirely underwhelming.
I'd wager that most people thought True Detective was the best show ever, not because of the material they saw, but, because of what they built up in their heads. The internet dissected every single line and visual cue till they were writing future episodes that were never meant to be. This season seems to be making efforts to stifle anyone's imagination running wild about what other worldly forces might be at work.
Last season had effortlessly cool Rust Cohle and undeniably engaging Marty Hart at the center of a thought provoking, decades spanning story about southern detectives. Trying to find anyone as interesting this season is like pulling teeth.
I'm sorry but the first thing I noticed about this season was that if not for the sparse moments when Ray Velcoro or Frank Semyon feel desperation, the main characters this season seem way to closed off for me to care about what's happening to them. I will admit that might just be my problem. You know kids these days with their short attention spans.
Even if I acknowledge that maybe I like to be spoon fed my characters' personalities a bit, last season Cohle and Hart would talk about nothing and everything in their car so we could learn about them and apply that knowledge to other less talkative parts of the show to glean information. I don't think the same thing can be said about this season's characters.
As I stated at the beginning of this article, I think it's a fool's errand to analyze a work while it's still in progress, especially when it comes to story telling. It's always better to look back at a complete work and then unpack it. However, last season had a journey I enjoyed regardless of the destination. This season is asking me to wait till we get there. As I pointed out, I'm a kid and don't have that kind of patience.
What I do have is an appreciation for an artist wanting to mix things up a little bit. I'm going to keep watching because this destination just has to be worth it!
The truth is I may be jumping the gun and everything will be tied up in an amazing finale. The only problem is that works best if you are actually making a movie. Or, if you're in a pinch, binging on Netflix. Otherwise, each episode should still stand on its own as an engaging piece of story telling that also happens to be a part of a bigger story.
Maybe I'm just ungrateful. Maybe I should just be quiet and enjoy the show. In that case, I'll just do like the theme song and never mind.