Wednesday, August 12, 2015

What I’m Watching: True Detective (Season Finale)

True Detective: Season 2, Episode 8 “Omega Station” (B=)

The good thing about an anthology series like this is that every season is self-contained and is designed to provide a relatively high degree of closure given that this is the last time that we’ll see these characters. The question that I always ask when characters are blasted away and die miserable, lonely deaths is what worth such a death has and how it stacks up to how they lived. In this case, Ray getting riddled with bullet holes and Frank getting stabbed before collapsing after a valiant march through the desert are far from fitting ends to two people who were initially villains but ended up being certifiable good guys who wanted the best for certain people in their lives and had made some questionable choices along the way. That Ani ended up as nothing more than a romantic figure who managed to get away on a boat and later begin to spread the story of what actually happened was disappointing since, throughout the season, she was consistently one of the boldest and bravest characters. I stand by my assessment of Jordan as the season’s best player, and Kelly Reilly’s performance in this episode was just about the only one that didn’t feel forced. I wasn’t fond of Frank’s near-death hallucinations since this show has previously succeeded with letting words and stories do the emotional work, and it felt forced to have him conjure up images from his past in his final moments. I don’t think that the mystery came to a particularly compelling end, and I do question whether it was all worth it. Based on how this season played out, I’m not a third season is in the cards, but I would hope that any new effort would put more thought into creating a strong plotline and characters before starting casting.

Season grade: B-
Season MVP: Kelly Reilly

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