True Detective Should Never Bring Back First Season Characters


The first season of True Detective hit popular culture so hard, it was almost impossible to ignore. Even people who weren’t fans likely knew, at the very least, that Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey were on television together. Their two characters, Marty Hart and Rust Cohle, practically became TV legend.

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Not to mention the insane popularity of Matthew McConaughey’s Rust, who continues to inspire fans over a year after the season’s end.

But as attached to those characters as fans may have become, it would be a poor choice to ever have us meet them again. True Detective and creator Nic Pizzolatto has gone through great pains to make sure that we know that True Detective is an anthology series, and that each season has to be judged on its own merits.

Having even so much as a reference to The Yellow King case would cheapen True Detective’s second season. As great of a bit of fan service as it may be, it would be allowing True Detective’s first season to infect the second. The best thing that True Detective can do for itself is to move on as cleanly as possible.

There are no hints that the second season of True Detective will in any way reference the first, and hopefully it would stay that way. We all want to see Rust again, but his time is over. Each season of True Detective needs to make a name for itself apart from anything else that may have come before.

That’s the very core of being an anthology series, for better or worse. True Detective should have no past characters or story-lines to fall back on. For it to keep moving into the future, it has to fully turn away from previous seasons.

The less we look backward in order to look forward, the better.

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