By Brittany Hale
With True Blood and Boardwalk Empire ending after next season, HBO began airing a new, dark detective series called True Detective. Starring Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, True Detective focuses on a pair of detectives who catch a particularly creepy case. The series takes place in a seven–year time period, between 1995 and 2012, with the detectives flashing back to the beginning of the case as they testify about their partnership.
What made me immediately excited about this series was McConaughey and Harrelson. Of course, I’m like most ladies who consider them to be prime pieces of eye candy. But their acting is top notch as well, and both actors deliver in True Detective.
The series, set in Louisiana, opens up with the detectives examining a disturbing crime scene. A deceased, naked young woman is found bound and hunched over in front a tree, antlers attached to her head like a crown. Neither detective has seen anything like it – but McConaughey’s character, Rust Cohle, points out that the murderer has probably struck before. The detectives immediately go to work finding the killer with Cohle doing what he does best: infiltrating a drug filled, alcohol hazed underground Louisiana.
Their dysfunctional partnership is, in part, what makes the series so intense. Cohle is haunted by the loss of his daughter. Now divorced, he experiences frequent hallucinations due to his time as an undercover narcotics cop and drug use. He also suffers from a drinking problem. Harrelson plays Martin Hart, Cohle’s counterpart and normal dude who struggles to make sense out of his partner’s dark side. Hart isn’t without his own faults, however, as the director makes sure to point out. In all, both actors play well off one another, and you’re left wondering how their relationship will progress in light of their personal issues.
For anyone who enjoys grimy detective thrillers, True Detective will scare and enthrall you. The nature of the murder is sinister, and it’s unclear how this case will tie into other similar cases that they unearth. What’s even more mysterious is why the two detectives must give testimony in 2012 about their partnership, which has long since ended.
Fans of TV series like The Killing take note: You might want to call up your cable provider and finagle some free HBO, at least for the next couple of months. In all, there will be eight episodes in the first season, and it’s slated to return next season with new characters.