Fargo: The Land of Taking and Killing
September 30, 2020 5:04 AM - Season 4, Episode 2 - Subscribe

"“The Land of Taking and Killing” opens with an image familiar to Fargo: snow falling on a field as the wind howls." (Vulture)
posted by fight or flight (9 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I've read a few reviews that really rip on Season 4, but I'm not buying it. But the reviewers are further ahead.

Thurman and Dibrell Smutney's relationship and background got intensely deeper - without revealing anything between Dibrell and Thurman themselves.

My conjecture about Oraetta Mayflower is probably dead wrong. Seems like she's just a psycho. A seriously disturbed psycho and a huge wildcard for the story.

Doorstep apple pie? 1950 surely was a different world.

I was familiar with ipecac as an emetic, but didn't realize that it's also an expectorant at low doses (stubborn coughs from smog, respiratory infections).

Rabbi (the hostage who double crossed his first family, and forced to betray his own by the Faddas) being treated like garbage acting as a kind of guardian to Loy's equally maltreated kid is intriguing. And really stupid of the Faddas. The contrast of Loy Cannon treating the Fadda kid kindly, yet with a respectful distance, is ratcheting up the tension for me.

I'm kind in love with the concept of the Dr. Doctor Senator character (he has a doctorate [in... economics, right?], his first name is Doctor - I wonder if the writers watch 'Archer?') and he's a badass.

Chekhov's captive-bolt pistol? Even if it isn't, I thought it was a nice touch to show that the Syndicate aren't total amateurs. Some of them may be young, but the crew is disciplined.
posted by porpoise at 8:57 PM on September 30, 2020

I've read a few reviews that really rip on Season 4

Same same, and reading them it seemed like mostly the critics are frustrated that Fargo's still being Fargo-ey in season 4: languid pacing, lots of characters and dialogue, lots of atmosphere over explanation. Not really seeing that as a problem yet, but hey. Maybe the bloom went off the Noah Hawley rose a bit with the last season of Legion, which kinda really didn't work very well?

Really quite liking Chris Rock in this.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:32 PM on September 30, 2020 [1 favorite]

For sure, I'm impressed by Rock's maturity. His reading the Cannon family prayer was pretty convincing. Quietly righteous - Rock has always been (oftentimes sublimely) insightful, this seems like it might be an interesting challenge for him to channel the response in a very different way.

Definitely giving him his due and open minded and hopeful to the rest of his performance.

I'm suspecting a dark turn, or him being punished for staying true/ ethical.

*edit: Earlier - 'Rabbi' is the Irish kid who was hostaged twice, first to the Hebrews, then to the Italians, and now is a poorly treated thrall of the Italians. Kind of like a Theon Greyjoy.
posted by porpoise at 12:40 AM on October 1, 2020

Yay fall TV is back!

I really like the actress playing Oraetta (check out I'm Thinking of Ending Things if you want to see some more of her) and I trust the team running this show, so I'm happy to wait and see how she plays out.

I am wondering why she would poison the family with Ipecac though. Granted we've seen very little from her but she seems more of an Angel of Death than sadistic torturer, but maybe her style is different for the non-white family across the street than for the old white dudes in the hospital.

The cops at the end: I just googled and interracial marriage was still illegal in Missouri in the 1950s. I'm surprised the family can live together so openly, but all I know about how things were tolerated comes from movies (i.e. not much at all).

Chris Rock needs to get his son back and fast. For collateral, brother =/= son at all.

Same same, and reading them it seemed like mostly the critics are frustrated that Fargo's still being Fargo-ey in season 4: languid pacing, lots of characters and dialogue, lots of atmosphere over explanation.

Um, why do these critics think this is a bad thing? And seriously? For this show? Maybe they should go watch the last season of WestWorld as I think they might be too spoiled by Fargo.
posted by LizBoBiz at 3:43 AM on October 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

It wasn’t until the scene with the detective who is on the Faddas’ take and has OCD that it struck me why these episodes didn’t seem very Fargo-ey. The three previous seasons, and the movie upon which they were based, had a very simple formula: there are Good People in law enforcement, and there are Bad People in organized crime, and there are Normal People who get sucked into being Bad and wind up stuck between the two.

This formula sounds extremely naive, now that law enforcement has made clear that to them the citizenry is an enemy to be beaten down and not a community to be served, and they’re happy to demonstrate it no matter how many cameras are trained on them. But it was one of the things that made Fargo feel optimistic even when it depicted people murdering their own family members for money.

The last scene of the last season was a stand-off between Carrie Coon and David Thewlis, with the former confident justice had been served and the latter confident he would wriggle free once again. It felt uncharacteristically ambiguous at the time. But now I see Noah Hawley was just way ahead of us all.

Love the season so far though! It may be too much to hope that Ethelrida is the one to bring the Kansas City gangs to justice, but here’s hoping.
posted by ejs at 3:11 PM on October 3, 2020 [1 favorite]

I thought what we thought we knew from Season 2 was that in 1979 Kansas City is run by the Italians and one of their operatives is an African-American called Mike Milligan, but I realise I'm assuming a bit. I do suspect it's all going somewhere a bit stranger than justice, though.
posted by Grangousier at 9:13 AM on October 4, 2020

Oh I am so excited to see where Mike fits in all of this. He was my favorite part of the 2nd season.
posted by LizBoBiz at 12:40 AM on October 5, 2020

Ok big brain fart for me. The cops at the end are because there are two fugitives at the house. *facepalm*
posted by LizBoBiz at 11:31 AM on October 5, 2020

and my early bet is that they eat the pie...
posted by OHenryPacey at 9:31 PM on November 18, 2020

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