My posts are better.
Walter said:I thought it was actually a weak spot that they were trying to emulate Season 1. It felt like the season's structure was mapped out in a board room ("include these bullet points and we're good to go! add a lawn guy in there too -- for our really sharp viewers!" ) And yet when I reflect on Season 1, I certainly am not thinking about the case. It's all character moments. So what I was looking for here wasn't necessarily a repeat, but a return to quality writing, quality characters that stuck with you after the show was over. Wayne and Roland each had their great moments, but that momentum seemed to die between scenes instead of being bigger than the show itself (like I felt with Marty and Cole). Any nostalgia over Season 1 is merely "Remember when it was good?" Because this wasn't that.
"Hey, remember that transcendent one off season of television where big charismatic movie stars perfectly wed themselves to sharp writing and beautiful directorial vision to create a hypnotic neo-noir crime classic? This wasn't that..." And therefore is a pile of shit? =)
I agree I would have preferred they truly recaptured the magic of season 1 somehow instead of spring-boarding off it, but they pretty much dropped that pretense after the first couple episodes and the departure of Saulnier behind the camera. I think that hurt some of the attempts at more... poetic visual moments the show went for later because it became more standard procedural fare in the interim. Stuff that had that dreamy quality and atmosphere early on became prosaic bickering in offices or cars later. My point isn't that this was great, but it was largely fine and good with some drag in the middle, and not some insult to the True Detective name because that name is basically 1 1/2 seasons of good TV, and this was the half, so if anything it helped stabilize the show after the truly embarrassing season 2 debacle. Maybe it helped that I was totally out on this season before it started and my wife basically made me watch it, so my expectations going in were below zero.