True Detective

Season 1 Episode 1

The Long Bright Dark

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Jan 12, 2014 on HBO

Episode Fan Reviews (6)

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out of 10
222 votes
  • The Long Bright Dark

    This show is unique while very familiar at the same time. The acting was a bit strange at times. It was too slow-moving, but it was still an okay start.

    I was a bit letdown, but we'll see where it goes from here.
  • Louisiana Detectives Martin Hart and Rustin Cohle investigate the bizarre murder of a seventeen year-old prostitute.

    When I saw the trailers for this "True Detective" I was immediately drawn to it. After watching the first episode I was not disappointed. Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaghey are terrifc in this episode and have great chemistry together. The actors and 100% believable in their roles and seem very real. This episode's well written script does a very good job at holding the viewer's interest. McConaghey's character is very well done. Not only will it be worth it to keep watching this series to see where the story goes, but also to learn more about Rustin Cohle and why he is the person he is. We were already given some insight as to why (His daughter), but I am sure there is more to tell. I intend to stay tuned to find out. You should too!
  • A Murder Enigma Inside A Riddle of a Detective Tied Together With A Straight Detective

    By the title you may be scratching your head, after watching the initial episode it's guaranteed. Darkness surrounds the seemingly occult murder of a young prostitute in a rural setting where you wished the light of sun would shine is the jumping off point of this decidedly off-kilter police drama. That, normally, is enough for a crime drama, but True Detective does not stop with that. No, what immediately defines True Detective isn't a horrific ritualistic murder, but Louisiana CID detective Rustin Cohle as played by Matthew McConnaughey. C Cohle is in one episode TV's most enigmatic detective ever. The sinister perpetrator of the grisly opening murder scene likely has nothing on the snake pit inside Cohle's mind. Cohle has largely become asocial in any normal sense of the term while, apparently, being a brilliant detail obsessed madman of a law officer. He's tragic, unlikeable, and compellingly magnetic for the viewer. Like paper and fire he's oddball matched with detective Martin Hart, the paper, played by Woody Harrelson. The pairing is combustible as Hart is just as committed in a much more conventional yet still edgy way. All they need is a sadistic complicated killer to pursue which appears on cue as the series begins.

    True Detective is absolutely dripping with ominous deepest mystery. Meeting detective Cohle drives it blacker with a question mark and apostrophe! Cohle is tagged "the taxman" because he keeps radical notes in a large ledger like notebook with articulate drawings he defers to in lieu of the usual photographs. The banter between Cohle and Hart not only defines their uneasy differences in working a crime, but their worlds. Cohle doesn't sleep in his self imposed hell while he sucks Hart into a place he struggles to attempt to do his job. Their partnership brings up as much uneasiness as the murder they are investigating. As a viewer one feels almost the same dread and that is what immediately sucks you in. Nothing moves fast and everything feels weird so you keep watching hoping to get a handle on anything. This has a kind of brilliance seldom seen on TV. I'm hooked!
  • Real people

    USA series tend yo be more and more sci fi Gorgeous people without flaws never smoke a cigarette Not even when the world is coming to an end ( revolution where women have no electricity but sure have found a way to make the most gorgeous curls) It is soooooooooooo utterly boring and stupid ! And now and than there is a gem coming up Yes mostly HBO _ STARZ I know But this is such a treasure ........
  • Good start. Build on it


    Excellent start to the series. A tad slow but it was warranted. Enough dialogue to keep my interest and wanting more, especially with the quote at the end.
  • Darkness Becomes You

    HBO continues to reaffirm itself as the home of quality as exemplified by its new series True Detective. Meant to be an anthology series much like FX's American Horror Story, the eight episode first season follows two mis-matched detectives in Louisiana assigned to an occult murder of a young prostitute. Now i know that sounds familiar in and of itself, and many like myself may only tune in for the first hour just to see the greatly reinvented Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson as the leads but let me tell you that True Detective is like nothing you've seen before. Taking elements of film noir and transposing them onto the small screen True Detective feels as lived in as its 90's Louisiana setting. The art direction and cinematography add a layer of aesthetic that few other crime shows can boast about (except maybe NBC's excellent Hannibal) but True Detective deals with much more than solving the case, in fact that's probably the least interesting part of the show. Delving into the psychology of its two leads and how living in an environment where they must solve such cases shows in the morose and introverted Rusty Cole (McConaughey) and the family man Detective Hart (Harrelson). The interplay between them in one hour is more dynamic than many shows of the same variety garner in a a few years on the air. Not to mention the greatness of the supporting cast: Tory Kittles (LaRoy from Sons of Anarchy), Brother Mouzone from the Wire, and even the actor who plays Lester Freeman pops up for a spell in the first hour. The narrative is particularly interesting as the first episode swings back and forth between 1995 when they're first assigned to the case as well as in 2012 when being interviewed by CID agents who had lost the case files in Hurricane Katrina. True Detective works on almost every level from mood, to mystery, to suspense, to atmosphere, to character, and just works as a piece of storytelling. What may come off as stunt casting of two big named actors feels like anything but and I hope to learn much more about the inner workings of both of the detectives in the remaining seven episodes of the season. I won't get too much into the plot details as I believe that if you read this I want the main thing you take away from it is to watch this show. If you're not impressed and slightly put off by the sheer quality oozing out of this new show, then I'm clearly crazy but seeing the genre given this good of a breath of fresh air is, for a crime show fan like myself (when the genre is already so saturated with shows like it) that this show I hope continues to stand out. The premise itself that each subsequent series would be a new case and new actors lets me see this as a franchise that could easily end up giving HBO a great start of the year drama which they need with Boardwalk Empire, the Newsroom, and Treme all bowing out soon the more great hour long dramas they can not force into existence the better. But you should really give this show a shot even if you're not a fan of the genre even just to admire the way the world in which these characters inhabit looks. My only bit of criticism is that the female characters (mainly Michelle Monaghan who play's Harrelson's wife) isn't really given a whole lot to do beyond cop wife cliches but hopefully that can be remedied in the weeks to come. Can't wait to see where this show goes from here.
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