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Flat Circles: True Detective Episode Seven

After last week’s episode of True Detective the show had officially been dubbed a “#WhitePeople” thing because of one kind of okay episode and people obsessing over symbolism where there was none. I get it, I really do, but the immediate about-face that many critics, writers and fans took after one episode full of character stuff was kind of ridiculous and, in a way, a #WhitePeople thing to do. This week’s episode of True Detective was back to speaking about Carcosa and was a part of the more exciting “falling action” that takes place in the course of a plot. Things are finally starting to come together in a big way.

No longer are we flashing back at all, as we’ve had all of the flashbacks that we can take. Last week was to ensure that we were all up-to-date with our files and characters before we buckled ourselves in for the final stretch. Marty and Rust have settled in for a drink together and Marty looks none-too-pleased to see Rust after all of this time. Rust is able to convince Marty to check out what he’s been working on in his storage locker where we are treated to the bundles of evidence that Rust has collected since his return to Louisiana in 2010.

Rust is unapologetic for who he was, who he is or what he has done, but he’s very sure that he is not crazy or that his theories don’t just exist in his head. He knows that he is onto something, with Marty not agreeing with him until the Tuttle evidence is rolled out from Rust’s 2010 adventures into the three Tuttle homes. The evidence is, well, disturbing to say the least, with photos of a little girl wearing a crown of antlers, surrounded by men in animal masks. Worse yet, there is a video of what looks to be the same group of masked men participating in the rape of a young girl, which is simply too much for Marty to handle.

We’ve now established that Marty and Rust are going to work together again, while getting glimpses into each man’s sad life. Marty’s family has moved on without him, leaving him to TV dinners, Match.com and a Private Investigation firm that occupies a rather large office space that apparently only Marty ever sets foot into. Rust, on the other hand, tends bar in a double wide, living out back in a trailer of his own and taking down time to watch the sun set over the bayou. Essentially, this is what happened to the two heroes from the 1995 Dora Lang case; they are broken, hollowed out shells of their former selves.

Marty is off of the force after he had seen one child murder too many and Rust came back to Louisiana because his life is just a circle of violence and degradation, he explains, with him wanting to put a cork in the whole loop once and for all. They might have gone their separate ways and done things to hurt each other, but when it comes to solving this case, they are both on the same page yet again, with Marty acting without a threat needed to be dangled over his head.

This time around Marty is faced with a brunt of the leg work in the case, as Rust severed all of his ties a long time ago and was a person of interest to the state police anyway. Marty might not have been the best detective almost 20 years ago, but when he puts his mind to it he’s able to impress even a sardonic Rust with his ability to connect the dots and push deeper into the case. Things lead them back to a former co-worker and more talk of the man with scars on his jaw, with the legwork once again falling on Marty’s shoulders.

Marty, as he says, is a people person, so he doesn’t mind a round of golf or a day out on the bayou fishing with a guy that helped possibly cover up some child murders. The only thing is that for the second trip Rust decided to come along — and he’s packing some heat this time around. In the meantime our two modern day bumbling detectives are following up on some of the leads that Rust gave them only to find themselves lost and asking directions from a groundskeeper that seems awfully familiar, who is mowing a circle of grass and mumbling about his family being around for a long time. Possible scars on his face shimmer under the midday sun as we pull back to watch him mowing a circle.

We’ve got our possible suspect, we’ve got Marty and Rust holding a sheriff hostage for a very illegal interrogation and the stage is set for a dramatic conclusion. There was more talk of Carcosa and that death not being the end in this episode, with it being very clear that we’re going to get a real conclusion and that those digging deeper and deeper into the lore behind Carcosa and the Yellow King are cold on the trail, as the Yellow King simply serves as a part of the whole that is True Detective. Marty and Rust are two very flawed individuals and are going to hold course until this thing comes to a conclusion, by hook or by crook, we are all just bearing witness to it as it unfolds.

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