It was a very tough act to follow season 1, since it was one of the best, most intriguing and remarkable works on television. It included some of the best writing and most complex characters we have ever experienced. Season 2 tries to stick to the same formula in regards to the characters, with each of the main 3 detectives and a criminal having their own personal issues in addition to the case/s they take on, in addition to throwing them in a hellhole in the town of Vinci in California, where everyone is more likely corrupt.
The cast is more or less perfectly chosen; from those that have just a couple episode cameos to the regulars of the show. Colin Farrell shows greatness, his character’s portrayal is the best the season has to offer, and he is one of the reasons to watch the show, with a flawless performance throughout. One step down the ladder is Rachel McAdams and Taylor Kitsch, who also achieve great heights, only to leave Vince Vaughn a step further down, with what is a half decent performance, that won’t be remembered.
In terms of the story and how it developed, I have to say, it was quite pleasing as they took a neo-noir direction disregarding the hard-core detective work that led to them chasing a ghost all around the local area, which we saw in season 1 and opted for more gruesome interrogating, and a bit more violence, kind of a first shoot then ask questions approach. It continues in a similar way to season 1, with slow paced development to the investigation and the unhurried dialogue that is sometimes a bit hard to comprehend.
As I said in my review of the first episode of the season, this feels like a true cop show, with the detectives not being invincible heroes, but real human beings with problems, and of course they try to over-dramatize them to get the most out of it, but without stripping the characters from their integrity and authenticity.
Not as good as the first season, but closer than you’d think if you keep expectations at a normal level.