True Detective: Who Goes There   Rewatch 
October 7, 2014 7:58 PM - Season 1, Episode 4 - Subscribe

The Detectives jump on the Reggie Ledoux lead, retracing some steps but altogether making progress in a new direction, earning leeway with their commanding officer in the process. But Rust's history and Marty's present personal situation make timely and not-so-timely intrusions (respectively), and the seeming inexorability of their plan to find Ledoux weighs heavy on them both.

The episode climaxes with a no-cut, no-edit, 6-minute long hand-held shot.

Music (playlist)

The Handsome Family - Far From Any Road (Opening titles)
Bo Didley - Bring It to Jerome
Melvins - The Brain Center at Whipples
Boogie Down Production - Illegal Business
Blind Uncle Gaspard - Sur Le Borde De L'Eau
Lucinda Williams - Are You Alright
Slim Harpo - Rainin In My Heart
Melvins - History of Bad Men
Primus - American Life
Sleep - Holy Mountain
Wu-Tang Clan - Clan In Da Front
Ginderman - Honey Bee (Let's Fly To Mars)
posted by carsonb (9 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
How many of you watched this episode without knowing the long take was coming? How many of you realized it during the long take? Because I'm jealous.

Also, kudos to carsonb for the music listing. Because damn.
posted by whuppy at 10:16 AM on October 9, 2014

The first time I watched this episode I didn't know the long take was coming. I watched it about 5 times while putting together this post though. It blows me away with its intensity. The insanity of this episode comes on quickly, tumbling downhill from the second Rust hears Marty say "Iron Crusaders" and gaining speed and multiplying tension from there to the very last second of the episode. The gravity of it, that unstoppable inevitability of what Rust knows he has to do, is only compounded by Maggie's interruption when he goes to play middleman between her and Marty. That little break is just a bump that sends the hot mess up into the air and even faster towards the drug-fueled climax. I mean, sweet cheebus, how many drugs does Rust take from the moment he samples the evidence room coke? Or, even further back, from when he hits the sauce stashed in his gun locker? It's a lot, of various sorts—some unknown—and given the intake his control of the situation through the chaos and to the end is remarkable.

And fuck yeah the music from this episode is fantastic. My favorite playlist so far by a long shot.
posted by carsonb at 11:10 AM on October 9, 2014

In fact I was so taken with putting the songs together here that apparently I forgot to include the bonus materials at Darkness Becomes You.
posted by carsonb at 11:26 AM on October 9, 2014

How many of you watched this episode without knowing the long take was coming?

About a minute into it, I said "wait, no cuts?" out loud. And then "Oh shit!" every thirty seconds thereafter.

Old Stones Out In The Woods

Hart talks about how weird it is that Ledoux had no family. With what we learn later on, I think it's likely he's one of the unacknowledged offspring of the Tuttle family.

The stip club scene, seemingly contractually obligated from HBO. Stripper in a US flag outfit. The bartender is Nic Pizzolatto. "Why do you make me say this shit" indeed.
"You think it's ok what you do? The way you treat women? This is what you get." Love it. It's staring us in the face, but we're paying attention to the wrong clues.
I would have loved to see that scene between Michelle Monaghan and Alexandra Daddario. Maybe not with Pizzolatto writing it.
Rust's 'bad shit box' has a flask of Jameson in it. Jameson: for when you need some grenades.

Hart tries on the jacket, it doesn't fit. He doesn't have any thing that fits - his suits look like trash. He doesn't as a cop, a family man, a hardcore underground biker gang type, anything. He's a man adrift.

Rust tells Marty exactly whet he needs to hear to keep going. Marty's undercover outfit is hilarious, but he sells it.

And Rust realizes that these bikers are stupider than he remembered. This 'plan' to smash-and-grab a stashhouse in a cul-de-sac project wouldn't fly with a team of Army Rangers, much less these morons.

Rust is the only one clearing rooms and corners. He also checks outside, where we can hear "They ain't 5-0!"
"Thirty seconds in and out, thirty seconds in and out." And with no training, no plan, no control, everything goes to shit. I love how Ginger runs off, and then comes back, realizing he's totally fucked without Crash. There is a gun battle going on in the background between the residents and the cops, and Rust manages to guide them out of it.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:59 PM on October 9, 2014 [2 favorites]

And Rust realizes that these bikers are stupider than he remembered

Or exactly how badly he was (and they all were) zonked out on drugs and booze.
posted by carsonb at 7:32 AM on October 10, 2014

How many of you watched this episode without knowing the long take was coming?

I knew that long take was coming, and definitely had an eye towards comparing it to my other favorite long take, the one from the movie Children of Men where some fake blood actually splatters onto the camera. Despite both being impressively long takes, the True Detective one had a totally different feel than the Children of Men one: there's more of a sense of distance and impassivity to the True Detective long take, which only intensifies the tension. I had to watch it something like three times before I could take everything in.

When I first watched this episode, the internet was still rife with speculation about whether Marty or Rust was actually the killer. This was the episode that more or less convinced me neither of them was. Marty's gross misogyny was plenty on display, but it was the standard angry, entitled misogyny of a good ol' boy, with nothing to suggest he was some avant garde ritualistic serial killer. And the moment that convinced me Rust couldn't be the killer was when he directed that kid in the apartment to get safely in the bathtub. For all his nihilism, for all his certainty that humanity should walk hand in hand towards extinction, he still took the time to try to ensure that child's safety, though in-show there was no real cover to uphold at this point. So I figured, barring some sort of extreme and frankly insulting twist about him undergoing a psychotic break, Rust wasn't the Yellow King and/or the killer.
posted by yasaman at 10:21 AM on October 10, 2014

I did not know the long take was coming. I'm a fan of long takes, and I cottoned fairly early (with the same sense of breath-held disquiet that always accompanies long takes) and I pretty much literally stood up in my living with my arms raised in triumph when it was done. This was where the show went from "very, very good" to "unprecedentedly good," for me. Spectacular, astonishing filmmaking.
posted by dirtdirt at 10:53 AM on April 27, 2015 [1 favorite]

So I'm watching the series for the first time and this episode really lost me. The show established that Rust and Marty can be good detectives, but the all-of-a-sudden scumbag plan to go undercover and kidnap an informant really seems like a stretch.

On one level, I get it: it's a story about dudes who are unable to be better.

On another level, the Rube-Goldberg-catch-the bad-guy games don't make any sense or engage me as a viewer.

Technically the one take shot was amazing, but this whole episode made me say, "this is getting unnecessarily complicated and I don't get it anymore."
posted by peeedro at 2:39 PM on January 16

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