I just felt obligated to write a review on Season 2. Coming off an almost flawless Season 1 filled with amazing characters created by Noah Hawley, does Hawley archieve what Nic Pizzolatto couldn’t with True Detective Season 2. Answer is…. Yes and it was even better!
Noah Hawley decided to have season 2 set in 1979 as a prequel with its focus on Lou Solverson (Molly Solverson’s dad). Where True Detective failed in its sophomore season, Fargo succeeded. The writing is superb with slow- building tension in the second season. Fargo surpasses expectations in its technical prowess. Everything from set design, cinematography, costumes and dialogue is meticulously arranged in great periodic detail.
It’s no surprise that Fargo would bring together an impressive ensemble of actors after its excellent first season. Wilson was a clear standout, as was Bokeem Woodbine as Mike Milligan, Kirsten Dunst as Peggy Blumquist, Jean Smart as Floyd Gerhardt and Jesse Plemons as Ed Blumquist. But even the less-central actors who didn’t get as much screentime like Cristin Milioti’s Betsy Solverson, Angus Sampson’s Bear Gerhardt and Nick Offerman’s Karl Weathers give amazing performances. The interesting Minnesota characters are masters of passive aggression. Polite exteriors cover a very violent displacement which makes for great characters and television.
Just when I thought there couldn’t be a better villain than in season one, the curtains lift to introduce us to Mike Mulligan (played by Bokeem Woodbine) who is absolutely brilliant and just as good with top notch dialogue and humor. The use of score, editing, cinematography, every component that allows a medium of entertainment to own its tone comes across here, and that’s a key part of what makes Fargo so clear in its execution of its intent.
There are many easter eggs in this season to connect to the first season and a wink at the film just as the first season. This season is superior to the first and has now been renewed for a third which is great news. Almost every episode is filled with laugh out loud moments followed by scenes with strong tension.
Fargo has the production values of a film but it still remains grounded. Personally I thought the film was okay, but I think the series is excellent. Fargo deserves all the acclaim and awards it’s getting. It is one of the shows that make the phrase “Golden Era of Television” plausible.
Fargo wasn’t perfect this year, but it got pretty close. Sometimes it became a bit too artistic, that it detracted from the overall story, but more often than not the risks the season took worked and I can’t wait to see what Season 3 will be about.
Fargo (Season 2) gets a 9.5/10.