Another week, another episode to recap. Joining me, finally, is my fellow blog contributor Ebony. I’ll let her kick things off and give her thoughts.
You ever read a book that started out horribly and you continued to read it solely because you had already started it but the ending turned out to be really good. This is what episode 4 “Down Will Come” of True detective was like. And shit did go down. Let’s start at the beginning.
We see Frank’s breakdown get triggered by a barren avocado tree. (boo hoo hoo). He’s broke, can’t make a baby and can’t get his avocados to grow. Life is so hard. His wife even tries to help by getting a guy who is in love with her to do business with them.This made me realize that I want Frank dead. First because its torture watching Vince Vaughn be a bad guy. 2. He is bullying people who have paid him for different things already to pay him again. 3. Vince Vaughn sucks as a bad guy. 4. I think he is going to eventually die anyways by either Vecloro or the Mexican ex-strip club owner whose teeth he pulled out.
This week Velcoro has been the wise, mature, voice of reason for those around him. We see him giving his son, his dad’s old badge. Which makes me believe that he is gonna “go away” like his ex-wife asked.He tells Ani that the mayor of Vinci has a vendetta against her and watch out, and we watch as he gives Paul alcohol and tell him to stop crying and man up in so many words.
Speaking of Paul, we see him go through quite a few emotions, and he acted his ass off this episode. We found out last week that he is battling his sexuality issues when he met up with an old friend from Black Mountain. After he denied it and got mad at the guy, Paul wakes up the next morning in old friend’s bed. Which bothers me not because he is or might be gay but because he doesn’t remember getting over there and what happened after. Did he have a blackout, was he drunk? Kinda rapey but whatevs. So this is why he has to use a blue pill. Also, may be why he has the weird shit going on with him mom in their trailer. So anyways, Paul leaves his hook-up’s house, he’s crying, he’s confused and if that isn’t bad enough his motorcycle gets stolen. To make matters worse, he comes upon photographers and reporters that are questioning him about Black Mountain, and the celebrity he supposedly he did that thing with. I think ( I could be wrong) that Dixon-the drunk, sleazy cop who works with him but who was also tailing him took the pictures and was selling info to the reporters so I’m glad he got what he deserved but more on that later. Later on that night, Paul meets with his girlfriend and she tells him that she is pregnant. Paul says he is happy and wants to marry her. We all know this is a classic case of denial and its going make for a shitty marriage, life, and that baby’s childhood.
We learned a bit more this episode from Ani and Ray’s detective skills. Like that Chessani’s first wife was treated by Dr. Pitlor(the same creep that Caspere was being seen by) that the current Mayor Chessani,Pitlor, and Caspere all visited Ani’s dad cult in the past and they all knew each other. Ani’s dad also tells us that Ray has a bad aura….(this season is full of bad, weird, and misplaced dialogue). Ani gets suspended for sexual misconduct by an officer she slept with and her partner, who she also slept with told on her for it. She isn’t allowed back into her department until the investigation is over but she can still work the Caspere case. Neither of these dudes can accept that they were hit it and quit its. Ani questions if she were a man who slept around would the same thing happen and not to be feminist or anything but she’s kinda right? She’s sexually liberated so what’s the big deal? Double standards are still rampant. Or is it like Velcoro warned-is this Chessani’s doing? We also learn that the prostitute that was last with Caspere has a pimp and that pimp stole a bunch of jewelry from him. They track him down to a warehouse and decide to set up ops to arrest him. Since Ani isn’t allowed back into her department, she has to use the small town of Vinci’s resources. They need extra men but Ani says they won’t be available until later that day but she wants to do it now. What stood out to me was the creepy way that Mayor Chessani says be safe. So they head out to apprehend this pimp. Meanwhile, there is this protest going on, people and reporters are right in the middle of where this raid is supposed to happen.
So this is where it gets good and I feel like it didn’t waste 40 minutes of my life. In true, True Detective form we get about 5 minutes of and intense shootout. Dixon asks Ani right before they go raid the pimp’s hideout if she is sure and if they should wait and Ani decides to keep it moving. Soon as they turn they corner the bullets fly. Sadly, and also happily Dixon dies. This is what I mean by I thought he deserved it, but the one time he wants to be good and be the real police he dies for it. Shots are coming from all directions, cops are getting shot, criminals are getting shot, protestors are getting shot, innocent bystanders are getting shot. We get to relive the cinematic greatness as the camera pans from varying angles and leaves us holding our breath. Vinci is a small town of like 300(?) people so half the town is dead. The climax is there a standoff between the pimp, Paul, and Ray and it ends with the pimp dead.
Which is good and bad because Frank wanted to talk to the pimp-which means someone is going to be in trouble cause he’s dead, and Frank didn’t get a chance to talk to him, but hey it was either the pimp or them. I believe Mayor Chessani gave the pimp the drop on the police and that’s why they were caught off guard but we will see. The only people who survived it are, Ray, Paul, and Ani. Its like they got the Konami cheat code for the shootout.
With Ani being the lead, the dead cops, civilians, criminals and fucked up operation this is all going to come back on her. She is already suspended, Ray and Paul are apart of this operation mainly because they got other stuff going on so the easy answer is to blame the pimp for Caspere’s murder and close the case. But we know it doesn’t just end there. Now that we are over the hump of how drawn out this season has been thus far, I’m ready for more episodes and to find out who the true detective is, and hoping someone kills Frank.
Now, I’ll share my thoughts…
This is your weekly reminder that Vince Vaughn is fricking terrible. I honestly don’t know if Frank Semyon is a good character or not because Vince Vaughn is delivering lines like he’s practicing in his trailer. I thought it was an interesting move from Pizzolatto to have the “bad” guy (I use bad loosely, who’s good in this world?) as a primary character and it’s even more interesting every week to wonder wtf he saw in Vince Vaughn. Man he sucks. Like…man, he sucks.
On a different note, if you told me that Taylor Kitsch (he’s earned his name this week) would act well in something that’s for entertainment I’d laugh and ask to have some of the drugs you’re on because obviously they’re amazing. But seriously, he kinda runs away with this episode. I think the Woodrugh character itself is kinda blah, but he’s really putting up quite a performance. Once again, some of the best conversations in this show happen in the car. Ray Velcoro may be a scumbag, but dammit, he’s our scumbag. How can you not like the guy? Don’t answer that if he punched you in the face.
Since this show is named True Detective, you kinda wondered when the Detective work will come in right? Well it begins in this episode. I kinda like the fact that this bunch is a rag-tag crew of expendables. Marty and Rust were both terrible people in their own rights but they were both damn good cops. Two big breaks come from Chessani’s daughter and Woodrugh on the pawn shop detail.
Chessani’s daughter mentions a doctor, who just so happens to be Caspere’s personal physician, Pitlor. Oh yea, Pitlor also knows Ani’s father. I’m not a betting man, but if I was, I’d say that Ani’s father knows a bit more about this alliance that he leads on.
I mean, just look at the title sequence.
Caspere had a weird sex addiction, Chessani attended his parties, Pitlor is the doctor for both of these guys, Pitlor’s wife died along with Ani’s mom? I mean …I’m no detective myself but come on. This future orgy that’s coming up (and can’t get here soon enough, honestly) will tie all of these loose threads together, I’m sure.
(That photo we see of Chessani, Pitlor, and crew reminds me of Bohemian Grove photos, by the way. Although there’s no “occult” presence this season, we know there are men in power who abuse it)
But enough of all this stuff, let’s get to that last scene. OOOOWEEEE! More bodies hit the floor than that heavy metal song we all listened to in middle school. I knew that episode 4 would be a change of pace but I didn’t expect this level. At all.
Subtle detail was applied to this scene. You see our 3 detectives working together, providing cover, chasing down the bad guys, and it’s awesome. Ultimately, the only option was to take down the first and only lead of the case so far. Also, some great acting by the trio. You could really feel the chaos jumping off the screen at you. So although this episode ended not knowing more than we started with, it was really satisfying. What we do know though, is this rabbit hole gets deeper. And right now, we’re one foot in.
Unrelated notes for this week:
- Lera Lynn (the lady singing in the bar) definitely adds to be bleak tone weekly with her performances. Also, if you pay attention, she has a new scrape or bruise every time we see her perform. This world is beating her down. It’s beating them all down
- I love Ani’s character but I feel like it’s kinda overkill with the “I am feminist, hear me roar!” thing. This feels like the apology for all the titty shots in season 1.
- Ani calls Velcoro a mood ring and we finally see the smile. These two are great.
Well that concludes it, check in next week for another recap. Check out last week’s here.