All one story
March 9, 2014 - Ray Eckenrode
We're not going to go to great lengths dissecting the "True Detective" finale because we feel very strongly that's for YOU to do. A writer only owns his creation until he shares it with you. Then, it becomes yours. Watching this show, or any great series or film, might seem like a communal experience, but actually it's very personal. It's now on you to decide how this show worked for you, entertained you, maybe even changed you ... or didn't.
That said, every answer you could have been looking for was there, including the answer to why you didn't (and can't and never will) get all the answers. But as Marty Hart noted, they got theirs.
Show creator Nic Pizzolato is a novelist by trade so it should come as no surprise the final 20 minutes of the show played out like the final chapter of a novel. Literary endings in TV and movies often are controversial (think "No Country for Old Men") and we expect this one will be, too. But, don't say that nothing happened in those last few minutes when we saw Rust Cohle, perhaps the darkest and most pessimistic "hero" we've seen in popular culture, come to terms with the realization that "light is winning." Darkness certainly became Mr. Cohle for seven episodes of TV time and 20 years' worth of his flat circle. But in the end, it didn't define him.