HBO shows are always met with great expectation and “True Detective” was no exception. Lineup made of Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson was promising and fans were ecstatic about the new production. Music on the intro was catching, story was crossing timelines and everybody were thankful that HBO produced one more great series, worth of watching even for the more intellectual audiences.
Season and the storyline have ended the day before yesterday and what strikes me is that internet is pretty quiet about it. There’s no rampage as it was for some other shows, there is no critique and disappointment and internet forums of the HBO aren’t overwhelmed with possible other endings of the story. Show that begun with great hype, somehow ended with murmurs and silence.
Why is that? Did show disappoint in the end? From my point of view “True Detective” was very well made intrigue about the killings, corruption and personal relations of the characters involved with equally masterful performances from both McConaughey and Harrelson. Excellent direction was accompanied with excellent storytelling and still – it wasn’t so good as it was when it started. Somehow, I felt as I opened a bottle of an exquisite champagne and then drunk it bottoms up. Too fast, too indefinite and possibly too conventional. All that in comparison to the rest of the series, of course.
The last episode was real thriller drama in its best, but my commentary is not so concerned with the last episode as it is with episodes 6 and 7, which were vague bridge from act 1 (questioning in police station, crossing timelines and opening cards) to the final act (were all the answers were given and protagonists and the viewer were purified with the catharsis in the end. ) “True Detective” is a show that brings thriller in its best on our TV screens, reminding us of movie landmarks like “Seven” by David Fincher or “Silence of the lambs” by Johnatan Demme. Also, there is wonderfully made British series “Wire in the blood” that comes to mind when great stories about similar subject are in question.
Back on the “True Detective” though, episodes 6 and 7 were the weakest link in otherwise great show and one of the best stories on the TV screens in the last few years. Transition between the parallel and coherent storytelling was made somewhat confusingly and the motivations of the characters in these episodes were almost at the cliche level. Also, the symbolism that was heavily hinted in the Act 1, was lost as the story progressed. All that aside, “True Detective” is a show to recommend and all the hype is very well deserved, but my problem with it is that it failed to be as good as I would like it to be. Maybe that’s just preference talking, but I would really like a conclusion that’s not so conventional and known before the last episode. Maybe it was my mistake to expect a surprise, twist or something that will put me in a state of shock for the next few days. Recently, I watched “The Shadow Line”, another great detective show, starring Oscar nominee Chiwatel Ejiofur and at the end of it I was left wondering. “Line Of Duty” season 1 and “Luther” were also shows with a great ending and storytelling that made me wonder and question the motives of all characters involved subsequently looking for second or third review, to make the story fit, to see all the hidden things that were there placed for us but we just didn’t see them. Somehow, I was expecting something similar in the “True Detective” and it never happened. So, the reason for disappointment.
At the end, don’t get me wrong. “True Detective” is a great show and it’s definitely worth watching. HBO really did make wonderful thriller series that was unconventional and great in its first half, but when the elements of the story that made her different (crossing timelines, actors change from one period to another, symbolism, multiple meanings to the same thing, deepness of intertwining personal and the detective side of life…) ended, then the story became just one story about good guys catching bad guys and I can’t help than feeling sorry for the unused potential which story definitely had.