Sunday 21:00 on HBO
3 Seasons, 25 Episodes

Genre: Crime / Mystery / Drama /

Currently Airing

An anthology series in which police investigations unearth the personal and professional secrets of those involved, both within and outside the law.
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True Detective RECAP and REVIEWS (38)

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  • Season 2 Finale Who Lives and Who Dies?

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    Season 2 Finale  Who Lives and Who Dies? It was never about the death of Ben Caspere. Not really. Great mysteries never really are just about the crime; they run deeper than that. The murder of Ben Caspere was a catalyst to open up a lexicon of conspiracies everywhere else. The double homicide sapphire diamonds case, the men's club sex parties, the California Rail commission, the political dynasty rivalry, the sex trafficking -- it's all one convoluted, giant web of a mystery that rapidly untangles in the True Detective season 2 finale, "Omega Station," until it narrows in on its characters.
    I'm not sure that the second season of True Detective was great, but it sure was complicated, ambitious and really good in the end. And it made me think in a way that summertime entertainment often doesn't have to.

    Namely, with a mystery as dense as the second season of True Detective, it's easy to ask: what was the whole point? You could be a nihilist like dear old Rust Cohle and simply proclaim there is no point. Or ...
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  • Black Maps and Motel Rooms

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    Black Maps and Motel Rooms

    Well, that happened.

    If you were holding your breath, hoping that True Detective Season 2 Episode 7 was going to raise the stakes and lead us into one hell of a finale, you were sadly mistaken.

    It was a swing and a miss this season, drama fans. We already knew that, but it's in our nature to hold out hope until the final inning, isn't it? Sorry, waiting for the finale isn't going to cut it. This was the make it or break it installment, and since they were still introducing new elements of the "mystery" that only made things more confusing, I'm cutting my losses. 

    We're still talking about this hour, and we'll still be here next week, but the facade is over. So much talent wasted. Can you even believe there was an entire scene of pretty much nothing?

    Ani: You're not a bad man.
    Ray: Yes, I am. Do you miss it.
    Ani: What?
    Ray: Anything.

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  • Everyone's on the Run for Their Lives as a Detective Bites the Dust

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    Everyone's on the Run for Their Lives as a Detective Bites the Dust I don't know if you were on the Internet before season 2 of True Detective began airing, but there was a lot of hype for this season. Like a lot of hype that it could never live up to. Still, reviews poured in and they didn't look all too hot. Viewers watched out of loyalty to the first season's brilliance, but the consensus was clear: this season was boring. And more importantly, "we" couldn't care about the murder of Ben Caspere.

    Which sounds horrific -- shouldn't we care that a human was brutally murdered? -- but a human was not murdered; a fictional character was. Thus, the never-ending question: why should I care about this murder involving these detectives? The answer is simple: you shouldn't. True Detective is a show about the detectives, not the crime.

    The disconnect for this season is that there are so many characters/detectives to keep track of. Ray Velcoro and his son, ex-wife, the people at Vinci P.D., etc. Ani Bezzerides and her sister, fat...
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  • Dark Memories Resurface When Ani Goes Undercover

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    Dark Memories Resurface When Ani Goes Undercover Who is a "true" detective? More importantly, what drives a "true" detective? Is it someone with noble intentions to preserve truth, justice and the American way? Is it someone who will investigate the truth, no matter the ethical gray areas they may encounter to get to the bottom of the answer? Or is it someone who is simply just willing to investigate a case for their own personal interests? This episode of True Detective, "Church in Ruins," attempts to answer these questions by focusing on the two most "unlikely" detectives: Frank Semyon and Ani Bezzerides.

    A gangster and a former cult kid make up two parts of this season of the squad (the others being the archetypal crooked cop and army vet), and it's an odd choice, but as we see in this episode, their roles in the investigation clearly outline what True Detective is all about.

    Semyon is a class-A gangster swept up in the murder investigation of Ben Caspere because the city manager held in his possess...
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  • Church in Ruins

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    Church in Ruins

    Contracts with signatures all over 'em and a big land deal? Say it ain't so!!

    I don't think it would be possible to make this season any more of a snooze fest. Talking about contracts with signatures as our dour gang of detectives are ready to peal out of a driveway in one of the most exciting scenes thus far? Yep. That's a thing.

    Despite the fact little to no headway was made in the overarching case on True Detective Season 2 Episode 6, there were some moments that stood above the rest making it not all cringe inducing. Let's take a look.

    Following up on the last scene of True Detective Season 2 Episode 5, the hour started with the meeting between Ray and Frank which ended amicably. Frank swore he didn't set up his friend and promised to deliver the person who named the wrong guy in exchange for Caspere's hard drive. 

    It was kind of surprising how quickly the two arrived at this disposition, yet they've been frien...
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  • The Detectives Unofficially Investigate the Case Under the Radar

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    The Detectives Unofficially Investigate the Case Under the Radar Five episodes in and I can completely, unironically say I'm invested in the case and most of the characters. After a clunky introduction to the seedy world of intersectional bureaucracy and police investigations, True Detective has finally echoed its earlier (and superior) season by connecting it to its earlier one.

    As Semyon notes in this episode, "Other Lives," people's biggest motivation is in self-interest, and the characters of True Detective with the most preserved and motivated self-interest are the ones who want power. It's the people like Frank who see every twist and turn as an opportunity; the people like the Attorney General who used the state investigation to launch a bid for governor; the people like the mayor of Vinci's family, who are embedded in a criminal and political enterprise.

    And nobody cares that these people are causing these wakes of destruction. No one cares that there's a cover-up, that a girl went missing, that a shootout killed doz...
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  • Other Lives

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    Other Lives

    As expected, the midway point of True Detective, which happened to be the big shootout in True Detective Season 2 Episode 4, shook up the format of things going forward.

    In True Detective Season 2 Episode 5 we learned the case was closed, and everyone had moved on. But as Katherine Davis pointed out in the middle when she rallied the three detectives back together again, it was closed while thrusting a shady Attorney General into the race for governor, and the whole thing just didn't sit well.

    It seems what makes a true detective this season is someone who doesn't give up. Someone who will care, even when nobody else will. 

    It's only been 66 days since Ben Caspere was murdered, but the lives of the detectives have been altered quite a bit. Each of them looked at the chance to work Caspere's murder as a stepping stone to something better, and where they ended up was anything but.

    Ray quit the force all together (and shaved off his mustache)....
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  • Could a Bloody Shootout Cost Ani Her Badge?

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    Could a Bloody Shootout Cost Ani Her Badge? In this episode of True Detective, "Down Will Come," Ani and Velcoro learn of a connection between Dr. Pitlor and Chessani, Ani finds out she's under investigation and Frank sinks back deeper into his old life.
    Woodrugh went a little too undercover at da' club and wakes up in the bed of his combat buddy in this episode. Woodrugh is out of the closet -- to viewers anyway. He does a quick walk of shame -- or cab ride, to be accurate. He starts to fall apart during the ride, obviously steeped in self-loathing.

    The Morning After
    Since he views his motorcycle as an extension of his masculinity -- that big beast between his legs -- imagine how upset Woodrugh was to discover it missing when he went to retrieve it. Then the guy gets ambushed outside his hotel by reporters questioning his involvement with Black Mountain Security, which is being investigated for war crimes. They're also still on him over the saucy starlet Lacy Lindel. Woodrugh does what a...
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  • Down Will Come

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    Down Will Come

    We had to wade through a lot of emotional angst, dark looks and procedural plot points before getting to the explosive last few minutes of True Detective Season 2 Episode 4.

    I'd say it was worth it.

    Everywhere you go on the net, there is controversy about True Detective Season 2. Critics can't seem to agree: some believe it's deep and compelling, while others find it boring and dull.

    I'll go on record and say: let's wait and see. We are only four episode into this 16-episode series. I think we were much further along in True Detective Season 1 before the plot and characters began to coalesce and make sense.

    Still, it needs to be said: some of the dialogue comes off as corny sometimes. Some of Frank's bon mots are insufferable. Like this quote:

    If I don't come up with a new play, the dead trees, the present from the stork...aren't going to be what they call moot pointsRead more ››

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  • Is Velcoro Alive or Dead?

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    Is Velcoro Alive or Dead? Surrealism, mobster ties, masculine outbursts -- True Detective season 2 really is turning out to be ... something. As our mystery broadens and our character studies tighten, this episode expands its influences to surrealist neo-noir for an interesting, if not puzzling, opening.

    Whereas the rest of the episode is rather straightforward: Bezzerides, Woodrugh and Velcoro continue their investigation into sex workers and the mayor of Vinci, while Semyon starts to take back his criminal empire and focusing on the "criminal."

    Surrealism and True Detective: Why?Have you seen Twin Peaks? Nic Pizzolatto sure has! This season is chock full of Lynchian neo-noir genre surrealism, and I'm not entirely sure what to make of it yet. "Maybe Tomorrow" opens with the King -- aka an Elvis impersonator -- dressed to the nines and light on the stage singing an old song. We realize we're in the bar with Velcoro, who's having a chat with his dad in a booth about death and ...
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