HBO's 'True Detective' and the Gentle Apocalypse of the Louisiana Landscape

January 12, 2014 5:18 PM

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HBO's 'True Detective' and the Gentle Apocalypse of the Louisiana Landscape

True Detective is not subtle, despite its darkly glossy look. It’s the kind of joint where everyone speaks slowly but still is hard to understand, where unexpected (and very good) music selections do their best to distract from the fact that what you’re watching is not so original. When the third episode ends and you’re still waiting for dramatic payoff, all the slow burning begins to seem more like flatlining.

The series’ premise straddles two storylines, one in 1995, as Rust Cohle (Matthew McConaughey) and Martin Hart (Woody Harrelson) unravel the threads of an occult murder, and the other in the present, as the two men recount their experiences for detectives trying to solve a similar case. In both plot...

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