The True Detectives were under siege from the not so true rest of the world in last night's True Detective. I find myself somewhat inclined not to write about it until I see next week's but on the other hand there's a good chance next week's, by virtue of being the finale, won't have quite the air of expectation and impeding doom this one ended with. There may be doom, but it'll be all over with.
Spoilers after the screenshot.
We join Velcoro, Bezzerides, and Woodrugh holed up in a motel following their operation at the sex party. Immediately I was thinking of Twin Peaks again as the soundtrack was doing the eerie, possibly distorted strings thing I've only heard in Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me before. But this episode was more Red Harvest than Twin Peaks. I love how a simple thing like getting hold of a few documents suddenly brings the whole world down on their shoulders, suddenly the detectives are fugitive criminals, except for Woodrugh, who's got plenty of his own problems.
I compared him to Percival early in the season but maybe he's more Lancelot, a skilled warrior with a tragic flaw. As one of the men who captures him says rather potently, they never would have caught him if he'd been honest with himself, his inability to acknowledge his homosexuality is his downfall. At times the story of a closeted gay man wasn't especially interesting, but in the context of a knight on a holy quest, it becomes more complex.
"I made a choice," says Velcoro. "A long time ago. I thought everything came from something else. But it came from there." He asks Bezzerides, "You had something like that too once, right?"
"That's not something I talk about," she replies, confirming Velcoro's suspicion and emphasising the importance of the "something" by the fact that she can only refer to it as something she doesn't talk about. Possibly it's related to the kidnapping she had flashbacks to in the previous episode and that she discusses with her father in this one. Maybe a vow that she would fight evil whatever the cost for the rest of her life. The thing that makes Velcoro, Bezzerides, and Woodrugh different, their principles, they can't be bought or led astray.
I was hoping Bezzerides and Velcoro having sex would be a little more wild but it was still satisfying. Again Velcoro, like Rust Cohle before him, affirms he is a bad man, an acknowledgement that he throws away social contracts and cultural guidelines in the pursuit of his moral purity. He beats up the father of the kid who bullied his son, he murders a man he thinks raped his wife. He knows that there's a problem with his tendency to apply solutions based on only his own imperfect perceptions but he's committed to it nonetheless and sometimes a man like him is necessary.
Of course, Bezzerides doesn't think he's a bad man because she's the same way, I loved the murkiness around the woman she "saved".
Twitter Sonnet #776
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