BySean Erickson, writer at
Exploring the area between movie geek and film nerd.
Sean Erickson

The second trailer for True Detective Season 2 has recently and unlike the moody, dialog free first teaser, this one actually gives us a better idea of what to expect aside from more of the grim and moody atmosphere. Most of all the trailer confirms more than a couple things that have leaked out regarding the plot of Season 2 in the months leading up to the anthology series' much anticipated return on June 21st.

If there are going to be slogans for True Detective Season 2 - we have two prime candidates right from the start. For season one the phrase "Man is the Cruelest Animal" ended up on many pieces of fan art and posters. Now, the first two lines of dialog we get from True Detective Season 2 are "Sometimes Your Worst Self is Your Best Self" and "We Get the World We Deserve" - two things you probably won't be seeing embroidered on your therapist's pillow any time soon.

Colin Farrell as Detective Ray Velcoro

The nice overhead shot of Colin Farrell's bloody knuckles confirms that his character of Ray Velcoro is still dealing with the anger management issues that have gotten him into a good amount of trouble in the past and compounded by a nasty cocaine habit. It's expected that these past issues have put him in a compromised situation in his role as detective of the industrial City of Vinci in Los Angeles County. As in season one of True Detective we'll be seeing another corrupt police force and this time we'll also be seeing Colin Farrell's cop having to work from under the thumb of the mob.

Rachel McAdams as Sherrif Ani Bezzirades

Rachel McAdams is looking strong in these trailers as Sherrif Ani Bezzirades who, unlike Ray Velcoro is uncompromising and unwilling to roll over and not fight for what she believes in. As the new trailer makes clear - she's fed up with the lack of interest in injustice. Her righteous stance puts her at odds with cops (like Farrell's Velcoro) who have found their place by keeping their heads down.

Rachel McAdams as Sherrif Ani Bezzirades
Rachel McAdams as Sherrif Ani Bezzirades

The trailer also confirms a rumor that McAdam's character will also be investigating another mystery that may or may not end up being related to the central mystery of the dead business partner of Vince Vaughn's Frank Semyon. She's investigating a missing girl who has been reported in previous plot leaks as being a childhood friend of Ani's or perhaps related to a childhood friend. From the looks of things Ani has some of her own anger issues, likely to be compounded by her troubled upbringing, which she takes out by practicing her knife fighting skills.

Taylor Kitsch as Officer Paul Woodrugh

Part of the inter-agency task force that is tackling the murder of a powerful business man. It turns out California Highway Patrol officer Paul Woodrugh is likely on the task force largely because he is the cop who finds the dead body of Ben Caspar, sprawled out on the Pacific Coast Highway. We know Kitsch's character has his own demons that he's struggling with and the new trailer gives us a good look at the horrible scars his character suffered during his time in the military.

Vince Vaughn as Frank Semyon

This trailer may actually reveal less information on Vince Vaughn's Frank than the previous one. Though it looks like we did get out first look at Nails - Frank's right hand man who got his handle due to a nail gun accident (let's hope we eventually get more details on that). What we still know is that he's a guy who's looking to go straight and turn himself into a respectable business man but ends up having it all go down the drain when his business associate turns up dead and his shady past puts him as a top suspect.

Vince Vaughn as Frank Semyon
Vince Vaughn as Frank Semyon

A new plot synopsis for True Detective Season 2 ties this all together:

A bizarre murder brings together three law-enforcement officers and a career criminal, each of whom must navigate a web of conspiracy and betrayal in the scorched landscapes of California. Colin Farrell is Ray Velcoro, a compromised detective in the all-industrial City of Vinci, LA County. Vince Vaughn plays Frank Semyon, a criminal and entrepreneur in danger of losing his life’s work, while his wife and closest ally (Kelly Reilly), struggles with his choices and her own. Rachel McAdams is Ani Bezzerides, a Ventura County Sheriff’s detective often at odds with the system she serves, while Taylor Kitsch plays Paul Woodrugh, a war veteran and motorcycle cop for the California Highway Patrol who discovers a crime scene which triggers an investigation involving three law enforcement groups, multiple criminal collusions, and billions of dollars.

It's still expected that the "bizarre" aspect of the murder will be tied to the nature of the body when it is discovered - covered in satanic style carvings which lead the detectives to discover the man's penchant for S&M and dabbling in the dark arts. In a Q&A with HBO, True Detective writer Nic Pizzolatto distanced himself from some previous, early statements he made about the second season focusing on "the occult history of the U.S. transportation system" saying that he ended up moving away from that to be able to focus more on the central characters.

So we'll have to see how much of the "occult" remains when Season 2 of True Detective finally finds its way back onto the Sunday night HBO lineup on June 21st.

What do you think? Can the second season of True Detective live up to the first? How excited are you to see the show return next month? Keep the conversation going in the comments section below!


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