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The Wessex Wire

The Wessex Wire

“True Detective: Night Country” makes its mark

Photo obtained from IMDB
“True Detective: Night Country” returns the anthology crime series back to the thrilling heights of the original season.

“True Detective” is HBO’s flagship mystery show. The series follows police detectives as they chase criminals in unconventional ways. It shows the officers dealing with their own personal struggles, all while attacking different cases. The first season was the strongest in terms of the storyline, but Season 2 and 3 didn’t follow that precedent. However, Season 4, released on Jan. 14, brought back the high quality of the writing and plot for a majority of the season, up until the ending which went in an odd direction.

The fourth season of “True Detective” has been titled “Night Country.” It takes place in Alaska, when a team of eight scientists mysteriously disappear from a remote research station. Two detectives with dark pasts, Liz Danvers (Jodie Foster) and Evangeline Navarro (Kali Reis) have to solve the problem at hand, all while facing issues in their personal lives. 

Danvers is a long-tenured cop who lost her son and husband in a tragic accident. Navarro is a former FBI agent who resigned after an accident that ended her sister’s life. Throughout the season the two struggle with mental health issues, but they don’t let that stop them from trying their hardest to solve the case.

Not long after, another officer, Finn Bennet (Peter Prior), joins the scene. He adds to the show as Danvers’ apprentice, a supporting character. Ted Corsano (Christopher Eccleston) is the police chief and aspires to run for higher office. He has a long history with Danvers, but is concerned with how this mystery will impact his image. These supporting characters are needed to add some diversity to the cast and make the show feel much more complete.

There is a lot of controversy surrounding the ending of the season.  The quality of the ending was debatable. While some viewed it as well done, others felt it was ambiguous and not definitive. The ending is open to interpretation. Some felt that this uncertainty was fine and didn’t mind it, but others felt it was a lazy way to end an otherwise great season. Personally, I am conflicted but feel that the ending overall is fine. For people who weren’t fans of the ending, it should not taint their enjoyment of the show too much though as everything else was extremely well done.

The mystery is captivating, with remarkable scenery in Alaska, which utilizes the environment to its full potential. The production, camera work, and music create a very eerie atmosphere. The suspenseful environment mixed with Navvaro and Danver’s mental health issues creates a chilling atmosphere and tone for the readers.

The strong acting from the main characters conveys feelings of desperation. They put their differences aside to finish the mission in order to redeem themselves. The acting adds a great element to the show, something not included in the previous two seasons. 

This season consists of six episodes and the plot unfolds at a steady pace. The themes of redemption, guilt and grief make for a very compelling and captivating show. “True Detective” hasn’t reached these heights since its first season. The fourth season is now definitely getting the show back on track.

Behind the Byline
Evan Hines
Evan Hines, Apprentice Editor
Evan Hines is an apprentice editor for the 2023-2024 Wessex Wire who specializes in arts & culture articles. He loves listening to music, watching movies/T.V. shows and hanging out with friends in his free time. He is a huge New York sports fan, supporting the Jets, Yankees, Devils and Knicks.
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