HBO debuts ‘True Detective’ as new Sunday series

While Lena Dunham’s writing does a good job of showcasing the strife of a lost generation of 20-something’s without employment, the popular “Girls” just isn’t up my alley.

Thankfully for me, and anyone else out there who isn’t an avid “Girls” watcher, HBO has introduced a new series. Along with the two-episode season premiere of “Girls,” the premium cable channel also debuted its newest crime series, “True Detective.”

In its first episode, “True Detective” showed it has some actual potential and can be enjoyed by any viewer interested in murder investigation, relationships between police partners and the occult.

The show, like any other HBO series, has two big-name castings to headline the series as well as the committed group of role players that pop up in multiple HBO dramas.

The big-name castings are Matthew McConaughey as Rust Cohle and Woody Harrelson as his partner, Martin Hart. McConaughney and Harrelson act out the part of two Louisiana state CID detectives probing the case of a murdered woman found in the middle of a field with evidence of a ritual killing in 1995.

The show is narrated by both McConaughey and Harrelson in separate interviews set in present-day 2012. With the change in overall appearance and demeanor of McConaughey’s character, it is obvious the series will have a multitude of twists and turns that will shape his character’s descent into madness.

McConaughey has had such roles in such serious movies as “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “Dallas Buyers Club.” Harrelson also did not have bad year with his roles in “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” and the drama “Out of the Furnace.”

With these two actors hitting their stride right now, it shows that the script must have some pop if they both took time away from features to do the HBO drama.

The plot seems solid. It looks like it will shape up to be a cross between the detailed realistic approach to conveying detective work similar to David Simon’s “The Wire” coupled with the sinister back dropping of a serial killer like in the movie “Silence of the Lambs.”

The setting is also realistic, taking place in the backwoods of Louisiana — but not like the happy, fun, small town Louisiana found in “Duck Dynasty.” I am talking about the real rural, poverty stricken parts of the Louisiana where people have more meth pipes then they do teeth.

The case should be the overall spine of the story but the most intriguing subplot has to be the detective partner relationship between McConaughey and Harrelson’s characters.

It is not the normal “Law and Order” best friends relationship; it’s actually the exact opposite, because they can’t stand each other.

Watch it for the murder plot. Watch it for the dynamic relationship. Watch it for McConaughey’s craft. But mostly, watch it because it is something other than “Girls.”

 

Reach the reporter at ehubbard@asu.edu or follow on Twitter @Edmund_Hubbard