I’m feeling positive about True Detective season 3

After season 2 of True Detective well and truly flopped, I was ready to throw in the towel and not bother with any other instalments, but then they announced Mahershala Ali as the lead and that changed everything, so I had to give it a go. And I’m glad I did.

You can read more detailed summaries elsewhere, but episodes one and two basically set up the premise and get us invested in Wayne Hays (Ali), a state police detective who was tasked with finding two missing children in 1980 with partner Roland West (Stephen Dorff). There are three timelines so far – the 1980 case, Hays in 1990 as he is sitting for a deposition about the case (due to reasons I won’t spoil) and in the present day when Hays, now suffering from dementia/Alzheimer’s, is being filmed talking about it for a TV show.

I think it was pretty unanimous that the second season sucked – I had a bitch about it here and here – but I wasn’t even the biggest fan of season one, which everyone raves about. Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson were excellent and the last 2-3 episodes were amazing but it was a slow burn and quite the slog to get there.

After watching the first two episodes of season 3, I feel like it is going to be very similar to series one, in terms of both quality and structure, with the switching timelines. But this time around, we have Ali in the lead – and that makes all the difference. His acting is so good that I already care about his character – he is a good guy (so far at least) and I want him to solve the case and get the girl. He also has great support from Dorff, Carmen Ejogo, Scott McNairy, Mamie Gummer, Brandon Flynn, and Sarah Gadon. What a line-up!

The case is gripping so far and hopefully, it will remain this way over the course of the season. I don’t know how the idea is going to sustain itself over eight episodes but I want to see how it unfolds and what interesting, unexpected twists and turns we have in store. I just really hope it doesn’t fall into the slow, rambling pace of previous because I cannot deal with that.

So far I feel positive about the season. The premise feels exciting and I am ready for another spectacular awards-worthy performance from Ali.

Showing on Sky Atlantic in the U.K. on Monday nights

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