HBO -TRUE DETECTIVE — FIRST SEASON — 2014
A very interesting mini-series taking place in New Orleans and Louisiana.
A recent and very disturbing crime, hardly described actually, sends two cops in today’s world back into the past and a similar crime that is described with more detail, though not too much, and especially the two ex-cops who dealt with the crime at the time in 1995 or so. The crime got a solution. In fact, a solution was found and the spectacular crime was not repeated but the deeper crime which was the abduction and disappearance of children was never examined in depth because of a blocking element in the family circle of the governor and one of his relative, nephew or whatever, who was a preacher and who had a whole network of religious institutions dealing with the education of children, and yet any piece of inquiry was leading that way, to these institutions, particularly one that was closed after some kind of hushed-up scandal.
The two cops who dealt with that older case are both out of the police force and they become, particularly one, suspects or persons of interest for the two modern time cops.
The investigation of the two modernistic cops will lead nowhere. They actually will come across one of the people in the case, but they will not know the difference between right and left (or wrong as for that) nor back and front.
The two ex-cop turned private investigators will come to a real solution this time, some kind of closure but the solution will not be satisfactory because the political and religious establishment in New Orleans will accept you arresting in a way or another one or two of the members of the grass and roots monstrous army that practices children abduction as a sport and entertainment for further games and distractions but not higher than that.
The happy abducted children end up soliciting in New Orleans. The unhappy ones end up being live toys for some adults whose minds are so perverted that the captive will end up in small pieces but death will only ensue long, long, long after the beginning of the live slicing up and live cutting off and live extracting of this or that organ.
The mini-series remains very prudent as for graphic exposure of this violence and torture. The main interest is the effect of it onto the two cops who originally started investigating the case and will bring it so some kind of a satisfactory though partial solution. As one of the two will say: “You can never get them all.” He should have added, “You can never get the big fish in such cases.” And you must get yourself satisfied by the fact the big fish authorizes you to take the minnows, their minnows. It is truly one minnow down, ten minnows up. Volunteering in this field of human monstrosity is the most common element you can imagine.
Dr. Jacques COULARDEAU
HBO -TRUE DETECTIVE — SECOND SEASON — 2016
If you like messy situations and systematic corrupt police forces and political institutions, this is your series. No matter who you are, if you are on the other side of the road across from some corrupted people, you will die. If you are not corrupted and thus ready to die any time the corruptor will deem it necessary to kill you, then you will die. There is no choice in this world apart from being a corruptor at the top or being a perambulating still not dead character that will sooner than later end up six feet under.
Of course, you can kneel in the middle of a road and pray for a truck to run over you.
Of course, you can, every morning, take some non-lethal dose of cyanide and after a short while, it will accumulate till it kills you.
Of course, you can start shooting with a gun in a street, up in the air if you do not want to kill or wound anyone, but you will end up dead with many bullets from duly-weaponed NRA members or some duly-trained killing cops.
But apart from that, all the rest is circumstantial. I would just advise you to choose a way to die duly avenged before dying. Kill a few and wound the others and they will kill you on the spot.
Entertaining because of that totally rotten vision of a rotten society that does not even try to plead non-guilty. The title is borrowed from a magazine, “True Detective” (originally “True Detective Mysteries”), a pulp magazine that enjoyed fake detective stories and giving details on all sorts of cases that existed or not, but all the details were more or less fantasized, fanciful and maybe even plainly invented.
Dr. Jacques COULARDEAU
HBO -TRUE DETECTIVE — THIRD SEASON — 2019
This third season has something more than the previous season. It is a cold case of a long time ago that got cold again ten years later, and that’s still cold some longer time later when the two policemen who processed the case twice are retired and living in old age, the case comes back again because the son of one of the two detectives, the black detective Wayne Hays, wants to bring some peace to his past-haunted father and he makes him become one essential participant in a TV documentary on the case. But nothing is simple and will neglect the personal motivations of this son and the female documentary-maker.
In 1980 two kids get missing, a boy and a girl, the girl is Julie Purcell. They are the children of a disunited couple who are simple, ordinary people with no future in their lap, nor in their local community. We are in West Finger, Arkansas, a rural community where a Highschool teacher is a top intellectual, one rare person who has been to college, apart from local doctors and lawyers. The boy is found dead in a cave, lying on his back and his hands joined in prayer.
The series constantly shifts from 1980 to the second investigation in 1990 when it comes back because the fingerprints of the girl reappear somewhere in another community, and the “present time when the two cops are retired. The fact is that the first investigation was complacently closed when a local Indian who survived by collecting trash that could be recuperated, recycled or reused in a way or another, and who had a reputation with children, became the target of a bunch of male farmers and farmworkers because he dared speak to two of their kids. They assaulted his house, and that was not the first time they attacked him. So, he is ready, and the house is very highly trapped with explosives, and he has good guns, and he is a sniper of some kind. Twelve people will be killed when the police arrive. An officer, to get some brown points with the local dominant family and later get a security job there, plants the red backpack of the disappeared girl in the wrecked house of the Indian who was killed by the black detective of the team, Wayne Hays, when the Indian turns his weapon onto him, hence out of self-defense. The Indian is thus accused postmortem of the kidnapping and killing of the girl Julie Purcell.
That was in 1980. In 1990 same kind of reluctant investigation on the side of the higher-ups of the state police, local police department or sheriff’s office, and district and state Attorneys. After finding some compromising elements, the case is closed from the top as being in fact in no way re-openable, since the “kidnapper and murderer” was found and is not here to deny this accusation. It is officially closed again when the press alludes to some information that could only come from the investigating officers, in fact only one, the black detective, Wayne Hays, and the District Attorney and the Chief of the local police accuse him of having given some information to his wife who used to be a highschool teacher and had become a writer with the book on the case after the first investigation. That’s a conflict of interest. The black detective will be proposed with a threefold choice: sign a document that would make his wife appear as a liar; accept to be moved to some bureaucratic job within the police department; finally, resign and move out. Out of love for his wife, he takes the second option and he will end up his career till retirement as a clerk in some office far from the madding crowd of criminals and murderers.
But twenty years later, things are different. The two detectives are retired, and they get together again and find out that Wayne Hays has some loss of memory, but he also has two children, a son and a daughter that look after him, his son particularly. His partner is alone, has always been alone, and he lives with a few dogs in the back yard of his house. They deserve coming together for the end of their life so that the end of their lives will be only one life together till death them parts. But this time they work on the elements they had not worked on in the two investigations, and this time, on their own, with no one over their heads and behind their backs, pressing their shoulders in the ground. And they finally find the truth in the last episode when they find the one-eyed black man they had been looking for, for a long time, after they visited the mansion of the big family, today more or less disappeared, finding the pink underground living quarters where the girl had been abducted and kept, and after speaking to the daughter of the black maid of the family. The one-eyed black man can tell them the details. They also find out where Julie, known as Mary July, ended up after her escape with the help of the one-eyed black man. A Catholic women’s refuge.
And they even find the tomb of this Mary July who would have died of AIDS. A fable invented by the women’s shelter where she had found refuge so that she could start a new life with… no word here, it is secret and sentimental, but so nice. The only moment when there is some sweet sentimental content. Wayne Hays will actually find her, but he will play Alzheimer’s to speak to her and her daughter without telling them who he was. Old age has some advantages. So he calls his son who comes with his sister and they drive him home where his ex-partner arrives for dinner and we know he will bring his dogs sometime soon and have them installed in the back yard and the two will live a final phase in their life (singular of course) that will be happy and totally far away from crime, murder, sin and whatever can be evil in this world.
The most surprising side of the series is Wayne Hays wife and the very personal, sentimental, at times strained, at times in complete harmony relationship between the young black detective and the young black highschool literature teacher, then husband and wife, and then more distant at the end, to the point of being completely out in the most recent period. This relationship was both tempestuous and intense with love and complications. That’s quite original since the wife actually did her own investigation on the side, discovered some things and got a lot of confidential remarks from some of the young and less young people in the community and participants in or witnesses of the crime. I said it was a case of conflict of interest and double allegiance, and it sure was, it sure is.
Dr. Jacques COULARDEAU