Monday, June 29, 2015

Strawhat's Streaming Shows: True Detective - Night Finds You

 Wait, what?

  I have this theory that HBO and George R.R. Martin have been such a good fit for each other because both take pleasure in messing with my emotions. Last episode I complained about the show being slow and having only one real character to get behind so far, Colin Farrell's amazing Detective Velcoro. And while I still stand by what I said about the season premiere not quite resonating with me the same way season one's premiere did, I can honestly say this second episode went over fairly well and might actually have been better as a season premiere. Except for some dialogue issues in the core of the episode.

"How do you kill that which has no dick?"

  First things first. "Night Finds You" is an incredible intro primer for Season 2. The way it's structured would've served the audience better off than last week's episode as an introduction to the crime committed, the stakes at hand, and the detectives in charge of the investigation. A lot of back and forth goes on between each detective and their respective law enforcement agency and the goals for the investigation are laid out. If this was done for the season premiere a lot of pacing issues would have been taken care of, but some character backstories would have been omitted. So it's a give and take this season, so far. I'd be remiss if I didn't talk about Vince Vaughn's intro monologue and his childhood backstory. Which was actually some of the better acting of the episode, but his dialogue, and a lot of that will take center stage later on in this very episode, and the length of the scene were a bit off. Just when I thought he was done monologuing a new portion of the story came to light and he kept rambling on again. I understand a lot of people liked Matthew McConaughey but having almost every character be an existentialist nihilist weirdo can be a bit grating.

"What do you mean this isn't what you came here for?!"

  Which brings me to a scene in the middle of the episode between Frank and Velcoro's boss that has some of the most cringe inducing dialogue I've ever witnessed. I can't fathom sitting on the set and not flubbing through those lines, or bursting out laughing at how ridiculous they both sounded. Which is a shame since I'm growing on Frank and whatever his real motivations for his life choices are, but if every scene he is in is going to have this much ham in it (and seriously, the police chief talking like that was just pure trash) then it's going to become real difficult to enjoy him and now I have a problem of likability with all the other characters. Officer Woodrugh is still a loner, and his scenes with his girlfriend are a chore to watch, but that scene with his touchy mother? Yikes. Suddenly whatever happened in the desert doesn't really matter and I think his suicidal tendencies come from some jacked up childhood experience that may or may not involve some strange Norman Bates-esque mommy issues.

  This week's pairing of Bezzerides and Velcoro, doing actual detective work and trying to get a feeling off each other's motives, was probably the standout of the episode. They chemistry seems natural, both a testament to the actors' abilities and the fact that, at the end of the day Velcoro and Bezzerides may have more in common - including the endgame - than they would be more willing to admit. The scene where she asked if she was supposed to solve this case, and Velcoro's silence, more the damning because of his dirty cop sheet, was poignant and more the crushing because of his conversation earlier on with his ex-wife about his son. He can't catch a break, and underneath that rough junkyard dog exterior is a man crying out for normality.

Then came this asshole in a bird mask...

  And then came that final scene. After finally landing a lead from Frank, Velcoro went alone, because there's no way he could explain this lead without compromising himself, to Caspere’s sex meet-up hideout (seriously... Caspere's sexual activitiesare either meant to throw us off, or to tie in with Season One's macabre cult) where Velcoro finds his potential demise when the Man With the Bird Mask shoots him with a shotgun. And then does it one more time at point blank. I don't know if this is the end of Colin Farrell's character (I hope not!) but Taylor Kitsch and Rachel McAdams have some work cut out for them if they want to carry the series forward as the main detective duo. And Woody and Matthew are a very hard act to follow.

 SHR Rating:

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