True Detective: The Locked Room   Rewatch 
October 1, 2014 1:32 PM - Season 1, Episode 3 - Subscribe

Rust and Marty put off handing the case over to the fly-in boys for as long as possible, following scant leads to remote locations and coming away with a description of the monster at the end of their story as well as a name. A tall man, with facial scars. "Reggie Ledoux." The world needs bad men. We keep the other bad men from the door. - Rust | You just look them in the eyes and the whole story's right there. - Cohle

Find the Monster at Darkness Becomes You (bonus media from HBO).

Via MetaFilter:
Last week's episode of True Detective featured a stirring tent-revival sermon from a wildly charismatic preacher [Shea Whigham]. It was heavily edited with dialogue between the stars of the show. Nic Pizzolatto (the writer/creator of the series) thought it so good, he released the full 6-minute sermon for you to enjoy.
Music (playlist)
The Handsome Family - Far From Any Road

The Staple Singers - Stand By me

Buddy Miller and Judy Miller - Does My Ring Burn Your Finger?

Johnny Horton - I'm A One Woman Man

Jo El Sonnier - Evangeline Special
(His version of Yoakam's The Heart That You Own is unlike any other version out there, and sadly not available freely on the Tubes.)

posted by carsonb (5 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I still really love that sermon. Great piece of writing, and great performance.

The thing that stands out to me in this episode, particularly after watching the full sermon linked above, is the comparison between Shea Whigham's preacher and Rust. If you watch the sermon and Rust's interrogation of that suspect back to back, you can see that Rust is positioned as just as much of a priest figure as the preacher. Rust is offering forgiveness and absolution and grace to that suspect, though he doesn't really believe in any of those things at this point, and his language is not dissimilar to the tent revival preacher. And remember, Childress eventually calls Rust "little priest."

On reflection, I'm more and more annoyed that the full sermon was cut out, because Rust's monologue at the end is a dark mirror to that sermon. The full sermon and and that locked room monologue work brilliantly as bookends to the episode.
posted by yasaman at 8:14 PM on October 1, 2014 [1 favorite]

Rust's retort to Marty at the tent revival, At least I'm not racing to a red light, carries a lot of weight for me personally. I absolutely love that metaphor and the way it vilifies both the actual practice of gunning it towards an inevitable stop and the subject of it's comparison, religion.

Ugh, Marty. It doesn't have anything to do with her as a living, thinking person with valid desires of her own, does it? Just where her mouth's been. Double ugh. Whether or not he was actually upset or only playing to get the admission from the random dude (like he said afterwards), that whole farce puts Marty squarely in the unknowingly-part-of-the-problem camp. From his perspective he's justified and righteous, but for everyone else he's dangerous, crazy, and totally selfish.

Specifically a re-watch observation: The lawnmower man puts on a very sane and patient face when confronted and questioned. He stays seated (can't tell how tall) and gets lucky that Rust never gets close enough to see his stubble-covered facial scarring. Compared to his antics in later episodes, this is a rather placid front he achieves.

yasaman, the bookends point you make about the preacher's sermon and Rust's monologue is brilliant. Put both in new light for me, and I like it.
posted by carsonb at 11:20 AM on October 2, 2014

Speaking of the sermon, I'm not sure why the link in that post goes to the very end of it. I've asked for the link to be fixed here.
posted by carsonb at 11:21 AM on October 2, 2014

Today's theme is highways.

The show of the highway superimposed over Hart's face is a shot from last episode, when Rust is driving at night, robotripping. It looks similar to a lofthouse, a grade-separated circle.

Hart's justification for religion is the very typical petit-moralist stance. And Rust is the barely more coherent response. Eunice is north of I-10, out of the deep bayou country.
Rust and Marty have a hard time leaving in their car, and are helped to go. They stop on a berm overlooking another chemical plant, some nameless track through marshland.

Due to the large proportion of Vietnamese shrimpers working the Gulf, you can get some damn good banh mi in LA, MS and AL. Or, as they put it sometimes, Vietnamese po boys. Aaaaand .... back into the car.

Rust looks much more at home in the dirty a-line than in a suit and tie.
"Listen to me." Maggie is literally crying out for him to actually be the good family man he claims to be, and actually be there. He wears it like a mask. And plays the good move: trickle truth, confess to a little, hope it suffices. He's having a classic midlife crisis, young girlfriend and all.

More cars in the Longhorn's parking lot. Marty's so wrapped up in how awesome he is he can't understand why his girlfriend doesn't want him to leave his wife. "Rules that describe the shape of things," because Marty is a creature of rules and boundaries, prescribed roles. Even if he is terrible at them. Like Rust says, he has no self-control.

I think Marty is an interesting character, the portrayal of him has something to say about the American construction of the family man, of fatherhood, of aging.

More driving. "The inadequacies of reality set in." Rust is referring to the wolf/sheep/sheepdog parable, with the 'bad men.'
From "hello" to "thank you for your time," Rust talks to the groundskeeper for 55 seconds. Not enough for the 2 minutes he bragged about.

"Compassion is ethics, detective."
posted by the man of twists and turns at 6:01 PM on October 7, 2014 [1 favorite]

I was hoping this is the "time is a flat circle" episode, I have a whole flat circle spiel!
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:15 PM on October 7, 2014

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