Previously on True Detective, ‘Down Will Come’
In the aftermath of last’s week’s shootout, episode Five picks up right where we left off last week. But it only stays there long enough to remind viewers just how much of a bloodbath the shootout was. It is then revealed through the newscast Frank is watching that it’s been 66 days since the event which is being blamed, along with Caspere’s death, on the Hispanic people running the cook house. It should be noted that Frank and his wife have downsized, yet not unpacked a single fucking box.
Two months later finds Ray working for Frank complete with a staff badge for his casino. Ray shaved his moustache and quit the Vinci PD. Unfortunately, this leaves him without a row house any longer because those are reserved for municipal employees only. He’s informed of this by one of the higher city employees who has come to try and figure out just how much Ray figured out before he quit. Ray then goes and collects rent from the poor people living in Frank’ hovel of an apartment building, but doing a crap job of it.
Ani is attending her required sexual harassment class with a fuckton of chauvinistic men. When questioned by one of the other rude attendees as to why she is in attendance, she reveals (I can’t even be absolutely sure it’s sarcastic) that she likes big dicks. But not just long dicks, the girth is the real kicker here. She wants to have a hard time wrapping her hand around that dick even. The teacher gets flustered and Ani has made her point when the guys ask her to keep going on about those dicks she loves.
Paul is in mediation with the lying actress and her lawyers are total dicks. He maintains that he didn’t do anything and she maintains that she just wants to put it behind her. I imagine that this is what mediation with Lindsay Lohan circa 2010 would have been like. Her lawyers ask how many people he killed in Afghanistan, or in the shootout. The state folks express their outrage, but in actuality nothing happened in this scene other than establishing that Paul is now working insurance fraud and is no longer on the streets.
Frank Embraces Mafiahood
Frank relaxes in one of his clubs when two men come in asking about their business arrangement with Santos, who is missing (his teeth, at the very least) and Frank is having none of their macho bullshit, so he kicks them out of his club and then goes to visit the Mayor of Vinci who is asleep at his desk. He tries to threaten the Mayor with his knowledge regarding how all of the land was polluted, but the Mayor gives him the same treatment he gave the drug dealers and kicks him out.
Ray attends the custody hearing with his lawyer. He has cleaned himself up, and agrees to submit to a drug test. Seeing that he has cleaned up his act, they ask for a paternity test because as is apparent to literally everyone, this kid probably does not belong to Ray. He loses his mind a bit at this, but he holds it together for a man who is seeing the end of his child custody rights. Once everyone leaves, his lawyer tells him to get more money because this will get expensive.
He goes to Frank to ask for more money, but Frank needs money too. He tells Ray to tail Blake (one of his assistants) and figure out what he’s up to because he’s up to no good. He also uses both the word “stymies” and the phrase “blue balls” in the same sentence establishing that the dialogue in this show is completely ridiculous.
Paul goes home to visit dear old mom who was much less handsy this time. He breaks the news that he has a baby on the way and is getting married. While his mom is not pleased, she doesn’t try to feel him up, she just tries to convince him that he’s making a mistake. He ignores her and retrieves his camo backpack that was filled with money and is no longer. He loses his shit on his mom for wasting his twenty grand when he has a family on the way. She helpfully points out that she knows he’s gay and thought that money was left (hidden) for her to use. He calls her a poisoned cooze, which I had to turn my captions on to figure out he didn’t call her a goose.
Ani, who has been demoted, visits with the lady with the missing sister. She hands over some photos and belongings that she has which includes pictures of important people, some blue diamonds, and an invitation to a party. Back in the evidence locker at the station, Ani studies the photos and figures out that one of the men pictured is a Senator. Her old partner comes for a visit and agrees to get her the address of the location of Vera’s last call.
Blake is Up To No Good
Ray follows Blake while recording a really depressing message about pain and it’s never ending capacity to torture a person for his son. He sees Blake at a villa meeting with Tony (the Mayor’s son) and picking up some hooker looking women. He follows them to a warehouse where they meet with Osip and turn over the girls and their luggage.
At the club, Frank watches the illegal activities occurring in his kingdom when his wife enters and tells him that the books are complete bullshit. Not only are the books bullshit, but their whole situation is bullshit and she doesn’t mean the money. She’s mad that he’s backsliding into being a gangster which is a word that offends him to the core. She reveals that she’s had three abortions and that she is unable to have children.
At home, Paul pours two airplane bottles in his tea before joining his fiancée and her mother at the table for dinner. They discuss the baby and mom drones on and on about how she knows everything and should come stay with them after the baby is born and a whole bunch of other things that I didn’t pay attention to because she was annoying.
Back at the club, Jordan reveals that despite everything, she does love Frank and she thinks that when he was vehemently against abortion when they discussed it before it had something to do with his own childhood. Frank teared up and decides instead of drinking alone in his club, he’ll go home to snuggle with his crazy ass wife on what looks to be the least comfortable couch in the history of furniture.
For a change, Ani and Ray meet at the same old bar and discuss their theories on the Caspere case as well as the new developments that Ani has discovered. It sounds like Ani has devolved into a true alcoholic and she’s also smoking real cigarettes for a change instead of sucking robot dick. They mention that Paul working fraud is ludicrous. Ani wonders how Dixon could have missed that the place he was surveilling was a cook house before leaving while being eyed down by the scarred waitress/bartender.
The Boys (And Girl) Are Back In Town
The next day, the three musketeers meet with the state investigator. She has decided to formulate a secret task force to continue to investigate what really happened with Caspere and the people involved in the shootout. She has to convince Ray to participate by promising to help him keep custody of his son and he begrudgingly agrees. As they head their separate ways with their respective assignments, the state lady reveals that they finally caught the dude who raped and assaulted his ex-wife. Ray’s mind explodes a little right there on the sidewalk, but he did an amazing job of holding it together until she drove away.
Frank meets with the head of Catalyst about his shares in the land deal. He again tries to use blackmail based on the waste company that contaminated the land, but the guy all but laughs at him. He does, however, have an offer. If Frank can get that missing hard drive that was located at Caspere’s house, then he can have five parcels as a gift.
Ray decides to take out his newly rejuvenated rage on Dr. Pitler, the creepy shrink. He pulls out some kind of club and threatens to beat him with it unless he reveals what he knows about Caspere – he and Chessani go way back and Ray shows the photo that he and Ani got from the Institute showing them decades ago together in the cult. Pitler continues to play dumb until Ray fucks him up a bit with his club. He finally admits that Chessani’s son Tony traffics women and Pitler does cosmetic surgeries on them to make them more attractive when needed. He also admits that he did everything he could to help Chessani’s wife, Helene, but that she couldn’t deal with her husband’s “inventive” means.
Ani meets with her sister on the beach and asks her to get back in touch with her contacts from her cam girl days and get invited to one of these exclusive parties that the girls disappear from. She is hesitant at first, but eventually agrees after Ani shows that she is proud of her for getting into Cal Arts. She tells her sister that she is heading back to Guernesville, which is where the complex they grew up on was located.
Paul’s assignment is run down the blue diamonds that have been stolen from evidence. (I had to look this up, but Paul and Ani found the blue diamonds in Caspere’s safe deposit box earlier this season). He interviews jewelers in the area and finally gets a lead when one of them tells him that another cop came by to ask the same questions a couple of months prior. He still has that officer’s card and it turns out that it was Dixon. Old dirty son of a bitch. He and Ani head to Guernesville to check out the address she has and discuss that Dixon was asking questions long before they found them in their earlier investigation.
Things Get Interesting
Ray meets with his ex-wife about the custody hearing and the revelation that her attacker was just caught weeks prior. She assumes that he lied about the whole thing back when he killed the guy that Frank pointed him toward. He stumbles over his words and is unable to express that he did kill who he thought the attacker was, but that it was the wrong person and he was set up by Frank. When he finally does stammer that out, she tells him that she doesn’t know what he means before storming off and vowing to prove he is not the father of Chad and will lose his custody.
Ani and Paul continue to investigate the address and find a boarded up cabin that appears to have been closed for a while as there are cloths covering all of the furniture. Ani notices carrion birds circling and cawing through the woods, so she and Paul head in that direction to check out what is dead. They find a shack that smells bad. They bust in to find a chair with duct tape attached and covered in blood. Ani points out that there is arterial blood spray on the walls.
Frank and Jordan relax in bed discussing adoption and their future. In the afterglow, they share a joint and she says that she likes it in this new house. He points out the lack of water stains on the ceiling and then suddenly there is some very angry banging on his front door. Frank answers the door to find a simmeringly angry Ray who asks if he’s alone. He lies and says yes and Ray tells him that they need to talk with a look that should make Frank’s skin melt off.
FINALLY! This is the episode I have been waiting all season for. I am invested in the storylines, the characters, and the outcome of whatever is going on here. I still think they could have gotten to this point two episodes ago, but if we have three more strong episodes to round out the rest of the season, I will no longer consider this to be a sophomore season flop.