Fargo: The Heap
June 4, 2014 8:44 AM - Season 1, Episode 8 - Subscribe

Molly faces pressure to close the case, while Lester starts to feel like a new man.
posted by komara (35 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
Slow episode overall, and the "ONE YEAR LATER" jump caught me completely by surprise. Before that I had gone back to believing once again that Oswalt knows who Malvo is and / or is perpetuating a cover-up. After the jump, well, seems like they've blown past wherever that might be relevant. Maybe. Anyway, happy to see Molly and Gus together looking domestic. Interesting that the series chose to proceed to the "pregnant female officer" territory. I thought the show had diverged nicely from the movie - maybe this is our reminder that it's coming back around before the end.

Favorite quote: "You don't cheat on Miss Hubbard County."

Cherry-picked imagined homages to Coen Brothers movies:
- the whistling music in the intro is reminiscent of the version of 'Way Out There' used by Carter Burwell in Raising Arizona
- Camera lingering on beach photo with seagull sounds: Barton Fink
- Bad guy choking police officer while wearing inscrutible smile; cuts to shot of kicking legs: No Country for Old Men
posted by komara at 8:52 AM on June 4, 2014 [6 favorites]




Canadian Actor Alert! The emcee at the insurance banquet is Dan Redican of the comedy troupe The Frantics. (This is their best known sketch.) You can see more of him in the excellent Puppets Who Kill, which is available (in oddly incomplete form) on Hulu. Except in Canada.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:06 AM on June 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


Just fantastic. The entire series is predicated on happenstance, so it's only fair that there's this huge boring year of nothingness before a coincidence pushes it farther along.
posted by Etrigan at 9:10 AM on June 4, 2014 [2 favorites]




Fargo Breakout Allison Tolman on That Big Twist and Channeling Marge Gunderson
And it’s so funny because people are shipping — this is a term I learned...
Oh my god, she's so cute.
posted by Etrigan at 9:15 AM on June 4, 2014 [7 favorites]


I was delighted when the "One Year Later" came on. The story was starting to bog down, but now I'm anxious to see where it goes next week.
posted by homunculus at 1:33 PM on June 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


Someone in the comments in the NYT recap points out that it's possible that Tahir from the Sudan may be able to place Malvo at the Phoenix since he spent three months "shopping" there, but was he there at the same time? I was confused at the timeline for Tahir -- when did he arrive in the US? During or after the crimes?
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 4:42 PM on June 4, 2014


Allison, by the way, is a fantastic person IRL.
posted by wotsac at 6:02 PM on June 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


Is it just me, or is Martin Freeman noticeably thinner in this episode?

I noticed this before the episode told me about his life-changing attitude. In the first scene I said to myself "Wow, Lester is so... so... thin!"
posted by Monochrome at 7:26 PM on June 4, 2014 [2 favorites]


Lester looks good. Everyone got new haircuts. Gus has found his place in life. Malvo seems like the kind of guy who would wait a year to exact his revenge, just so he had more to take.

Malvo logic.
posted by mecran01 at 5:46 AM on June 5, 2014 [2 favorites]


Allison, by the way, is a fantastic person IRL.

What a fantastic actor she is, just mesmerizing every second on the screen. When you can out-act Martin Freeman and Billy Bob Thornton, you're doing OK in life.

The flash-forward was very enjoyable and not at all expected. So glad to see Gus and Molly together, and as pregnant as she is, the wooing must have gone very well very quickly.
posted by FelliniBlank at 5:47 AM on June 5, 2014 [1 favorite]


Also, I let out a little cheer when I realized Gus got to be a mail carrier!
posted by FelliniBlank at 5:51 AM on June 5, 2014 [9 favorites]


So, there are two more episodes? Cuz this felt like it actually would've made a decent, if ambiguous, series ending. (I actually thought it was the series end until I checked my Tivo to-do list and saw a new one next week.)
posted by dnash at 7:35 AM on June 5, 2014 [1 favorite]


I thought for sure when Gus was talking to Molly in the police car that the camera was actually panning over to Malvo waiting in the woods ready to pounce. So glad that wasn't the case and the time jump was a complete surprise.

Fascinating to watch the evolution of Lester Nygaard. Who would have thought he was so despicable? I guess Malvo brings that out in people.

Am I the only one who doesn't know any people IRL who are watching this?
posted by futureisunwritten at 8:25 AM on June 5, 2014 [4 favorites]


Also, I saw Stephen Root's name in the credits but don't recall actually seeing him. Hope to see him next week and the week after. Just when I thought the acting talent on this show couldn't get any better!
posted by futureisunwritten at 8:25 AM on June 5, 2014 [2 favorites]


Am I the only one who doesn't know any people IRL who are watching this?

I don't even know any other people in my house who are watching this. My spouse, who is a lifelong Michigander, was offended by the level of self-conscious "Aw jeez" Midwesternishness in the first ep and hasn't watched it since.

Also, I saw Stephen Root's name in the credits but don't recall actually seeing him.

He was talking to Malvo in Vegas.
posted by Etrigan at 8:29 AM on June 5, 2014 [1 favorite]


Also, I let out a little cheer when I realized Gus got to be a mail carrier!

How long before he starts designing stamps?
posted by Sys Rq at 8:30 AM on June 5, 2014 [6 favorites]


So, there are two more episodes? Cuz this felt like it actually would've made a decent, if ambiguous, series ending. (I actually thought it was the series end until I checked my Tivo to-do list and saw a new one next week.)


Apparently there's talk of a Season Two, but it probably wouldn't feature these characters/story arcs.
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 12:53 PM on June 5, 2014


Missed the last 15 minutes due to my DVR not being able to record more than two shows at once. Recording cock-up. :(

Damn.
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome at 7:07 PM on June 5, 2014


I'm just disappointed we didn't get to see the cake with a frosting gun (as described by Bill).
posted by troika at 10:05 AM on June 6, 2014


We did see the cake! It's at the cafe when the Bemidgi cops are all gathered to celebrate.
posted by killdevil at 10:18 AM on June 6, 2014


Really! How did I miss it? I was so excited about that cake! Will have to rewatch.
posted by troika at 10:33 AM on June 6, 2014


I think the shows are on demand/online?
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 12:54 PM on June 6, 2014 [2 favorites]


I saw Stephen Root's name in the credits but don't recall actually seeing him

I'm pretty sure he was sitting across the table from Malvo at the end of the episode. He was mostly out of focus. Guess we'll see if he ends up with a speaking part.

My spouse, who is a lifelong Michigander, was offended by the level of self-conscious "Aw jeez" Midwesternishness in the first ep and hasn't watched it since.

I grew up in Minnesota and the movie Fargo bothered me a lot when it came out (I was 18 at the time). Now as an adult my test for any show or movie is this - is this show designed to make smug white people feel more smug about how much better they are than the people in the show? I don't get that vibe from this show.
posted by MillMan at 12:39 AM on June 7, 2014 [1 favorite]


As a lifelong Midwesterner, I'd say Molly, Gus, and Molly's dad are way less caricatured and stylized than any of the other characters, and of course, they're the moral center of the whole shebang. This may also be partly because the Minnesota accent is extremely difficult for outlanders to do accurately, and Freeman, Blanchard, Odenkirk get it wrong a certain amount of the time, which makes it so pronounced as to seem mocking. That was definitely true of Frances McDormand, but the Coens were certainly going for over-the-top there, and I'm not sure that's the case here.
posted by FelliniBlank at 6:56 AM on June 7, 2014


My favorite homage to the movie this episode was pregnant Molly echoing pregnant Marge Gunderson: "We're doing good."

Random production question: is it really tough to license the actual USPS logo for a mail truck? Seeing some random logo on Gus's truck was a tiny detail that just threw me.

Anybody know what movie Molly was watching in bed with Gus?

Lester with his Lucite-slab phallic symbol award in the bar to pick up ladies--priceless.

So, Tahir, the Sudanese refugee...anyone else think he looked a little old to be a foster kid, even with the Lost Boys angle? I found myself wondering if he was who he claimed to be, or if he'd crafted a backstory on the fly to match the life situation of the random American in a grocery store who stopped to get some Chex Mix before the ballet. Maybe I'm reading way too much into it--at this point in the season arc, what purpose would it serve? But perhaps it's also a testament to the powerful themes of the show that I can't decide which is the more plausible explanation for the random appearance of this Sudanese immigrant--coincidence or con man?
posted by ChrisTN at 7:10 AM on June 7, 2014 [2 favorites]


The last couple of episodes finally made me notice that almost every crime in this movie was predicated entirely on police ineptitude. Almost nothing Malvo has done makes any sense for a guy who prides himself on being undetectable. From his first good-deed murder to his marching down a major street with an assault rifle, he basically ONLY gets away with anything at all because every single cop aside from Molly is basically an actual imbecile! There almost isn't a single thing he or Lester did criminally that should have been in any way untraceable.

I mean maybe this was obvious to everyone already, but I guess I didn't notice how central it was to the proceedings until Key and Peele showed up to really ratchet up the procedural incompetence.
posted by SharkParty at 11:57 AM on June 8, 2014 [3 favorites]


So I've just watched this episode, and honestly, I clapped my hands in glee when I saw Gus with his mail truck and Molly with her giant baby belly. Awww yeah!

I loved that Lester turned into a complete asshole, but I think that's entirely because I can't stand Martin Freeman, and whenever he's acting like a smug asshole, I figure he's not acting at all, and then I get to hate him. So it all works out. Can't wait to see what Malvo does to him.

And because y'all are talking about how they talk on the show, I get to tell my single Minnesota story too!

See, I went to college with a girl who came from Winona. And we'd make Fargo jokes, as you do, and she'd repeatedly say "No, no, people don't talk like that."

Fast-forward four years, and we're in the Minneapolis airport picking up a bridesmaid for her wedding. As we walk to the gate, we hear a man on the phone. "Oh yaah," he says. "You betcha."

And I stop, and turn to her, and go "Dude. You always told me nobody talked like that. YOU LIED."

Then she rolls her eyes and tells me to keep walking.
posted by Katemonkey at 2:15 PM on June 8, 2014 [6 favorites]


Man, I almost tear up a little just thinking about Molly and Gus's dinnertable exchange about the Halloween beer, it's so goddamn sweet and familial.
posted by FelliniBlank at 8:02 PM on June 9, 2014


This isn't the last episode then? When it finished, I was certain that I'd just watched an unsatisfying series ending. Ah. I see dnash also felt the same way/made the same point.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 2:38 AM on June 11, 2014


I totally squeed when they showed Gus as a mailman and a pregnant Molly. I was a total shipper from the moment they met.
posted by mathowie at 8:51 PM on December 29, 2014 [1 favorite]


I was thinking through this episode again in my mind, and with the 1 year flash forward, I can't buy that Lester got off completely free. The one sticking point for me in the story is how he makes up everything about his brother shooting the police chief after planting the evidence. The evidence would be strong to convict the brother but I couldn't imagine it being a tight case in a real court of law, since there are so many other angles to explore and his brother was rich enough to afford very good lawyers who could unravel the case.
posted by mathowie at 9:09 AM on December 31, 2014


In the middle of watching this now. When "One Year Later" came up I yelled "WHAT" out loud to my empty apartment and immediately paused it so that I could come here and post this comment. Ok, now I'm sufficiently calm enough to continue.
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:36 PM on March 15, 2016


I just rewatched this season and I forgot how much I loved seeing pregnant Molly and mailman Gus. The two of them just make me feel all warm and squishy inside. Plus Gus calling Molly "Mom" when he's speaking to Greta and Lou getting two grandkids and a son-in-law all at once. It's just so nice.

And not merely Minnesota nice either.
posted by elsietheeel at 12:13 PM on February 16, 2018


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