True Detective aired its 4th Episode on Sunday, the 9th. They called it Who Goes There, which I can’t really connect to any thing except for a sliding window in the door of a Members Only club inside of a biker bar in East Texas. You know, you knock, they open this little window to see who you are as in … who goes there. But that’s getting a wee bit ahead of the story.
Marty and Rust go up to the penitentiary to talk to Charlie Lang, who we learned was the cellmate of one Reggie Ledoux. Lang is full of spit and vinegar but he does manage to tell the detectives, that Reggie did know Lang’s ex-wife. The one Rust discovered as a possible victim of the killer they were chasing since week one.
Marty is sliding downhill fast. He has a row with the girl he was doing on the side, and if that wasn’t bad enough, Marty’s wife packs up and leaves him. So Marty is fueled on rage, anxiety, stress, and depression, and that’s besides the cheap whiskey he’s tossing down.
But not so fucked up that he can’t get a lead on Reggie, who is now cooking meth for the Iron Crusaders, a biker gang in Texas. That would be the aforementioned East Texas. And it just so happens that Rust knows them from his days working as a narc in the very same East Texas. Marty asks a key question –
Rust’s answer is telling. If you read between the lines, Rust is going to be putting himself in harm’s way. These bikers aren’t to be taken lightly. They’ve a nasty habit of punishing those who cross them in a particular way. He describes it to Marty. They tape you into this chair that’s bolted to the floor in such a way that the most you can do is blink. From there it gets worse much worse. I’ll not repeat what they do – but if you’ve seen the episode then you can re-imagine it without my help. So it is not surprising when we hear Rust’s answer to Marty’s question:
Well readers ,that calls for a Road Trip in police lingo.
Rust has a plan. He knows a biker dude in the Iron Crusaders and they can get to this fellow by offering a trade, kind of a coke for meth deal. Once Rust gets close, they should be able to smell Reggie’s cooking lab. Marty understands the plan and asks where you going to get the coke? Readers – can you spell Police Locked Evidence & Property Room?
So off they go. This won’t be a walk in park for Rust who will do the inside work with the bikers. Marty will be on the periphery waiting for a call on the unlisted, disposable phone that Rust gives him.
I won’t go any farther with this set up. As the first three episodes were mostly family stuff and detective work, this time, Nic Pizzolatto, the writer, uncorks the action bottle. We will not be seeing the cerebral Rust Cohle this week. What we get is the exact opposite. Rust shows a side of him that we hadn’t seen before. He cuts corners, breaks the law in a myriad of ways, and is downright scary.
While we don’t have Reggie Ledoux in our sights yet (they had to save something) we do get a big hint about why Rust and Cohle had a falling out. Likely it has to do with what Cohle said about Marty’s wife, and the fact that Marty and his Missus are living under different roofs. Rust said that Marty and Maggie would likely get back together in a couple of months. Marty pressed Rust for an honest answer. Rust repeated what he said, but whether it was an honest answer – we can’t say.
The show is picking up speed. Cohle is not at all weird.
He’s one hell of an undercover.
On the other hand Marty is falling apart – at least the 1995 Marty is falling apart. The 2012 Marty is upright and seemingly has it together. The turn to action the week was quite welcome even if the robbery they pull was a hit hard to follow. It was also evident that Cohle was a bit over the top in the action sequence which contrasted quite well against the first encounter with the biker dude in the bar.
Marty is still in denial about his role as a husband, father and provider. He tells Maggie that she’s not going to fuck up his family. Maggie has already turned the page – at least for now as far as we know.
From the dialogue with the 2012 cops,
we can see, that in their eyes, Cohle’s stock has gone down a bit. We already know simply from the looks of him. But the way each of them describes what happened in the past, over time, Cohle is not looking so good.
On the other hand maybe that’s just a visual trick played on us by writer Pizzolatto and the director Cary Fukunaga. Which is helped immensely by Matthew McConaughey’s down but not quite out Bayou slouch, rumpled look as well as the smoking and guzzling in 2012 vs the neat as a pin Martin Hart that Woody Harrelson gives us. The two of them could be looking at some hardware the next time the Emmy’s convene.
Surely we can all agree that this was the strongest episode so far; am I right? Until next week.