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How Do You Think ‘True Detective’ Will End? Logline For Season Finale Episode ‘Form And Void’ Revealed

How Do You Think 'True Detective' Will End? Logline For Season Finale Episode 'Form And Void' Revealed

While we’ve lived through “The Sopranos” and “Breaking Bad” becoming pop culture phenomena as the world wondered about the fates of Tony Soprano and Walter White in the lead up the finales of both shows, when was the last time such buzz has centered around how the first season of series will end? Indeed, “True Detective” has been surprising not just for how incredibly rich, accomplished and literary the show has been, but for presenting a truly haunting, gripping mystery—across three beautifully managed timelines—that is seared with tension, atmosphere and a genuine whodunit problem to solve. And with the finale fast approaching, a morsel of a clue has arrived.

HBO revealed today that the final episode, scheduled to air on March 9th, will be titled “Form And Void.” And even more, they’ve served up an appropriately vague logline: “An overlooked detail provides Hart and Cohle with an important new lead in their 17-year-old case.” What does it all mean?

We have our own thoughts, but we want you to tell us how you think it’ll go down. Is Rust really the monster behind the serial killings, with Martin set to be shocked that the answer to the “detective’s curse” was in front of his face the whole time? Is Rust’s oft-mentioned father somehow connected? What about Shea Whigham‘s preacher? How does the “flat circle of time” come into play? If anything, “True Detective” has proven not to play by traditional genre rules, so we’re sure whatever’s coming won’t be obvious. Share your theories with us below—the next three weeks are gonna be a helluva ride.

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Alright. Theories galore; here they come.

1) Rust and Marty are mirror images of each other's past and present escaping their sins. Rust could have been the alcoholic father coming home drunk and killed his daughter on the bicycle which would explain his relentless guilt…looking for his confession but never getting the chance to. Meanwhile, Rust is now sober yet Marty is the drunk one who already had his "religious" time and as we can recall during his cheating rendezvous, going over to the young women's house drunk and hitting a bicycle with his car.

2) Marty was the one who killed Rust's daughter while drunk driving. The clues being the drunk driving and hitting a bicycle on the way to cheat with the young women.

3) Marty not only killed Rust's daughter while drunk driving but it also the Yellow King. And this could explain Rust's obsession in a way of "solving" his daughter's murder.

4) Rust's daughter is not involved at all.

5) All the women who have been murdered in the "sacrificial" way, chose to be crucified on their own demise. And, Marty's daughter, Audrey, is next.

6) Marty is indeed the Yellow King. And so is his father-in-law.

7) Marty is the only Yellow King. He has been a step ahead of Rust from the beginning. In the first episodes, he took a great interest in the two things related to the crimes: the sex criminal minds books and the cross. Why did those two things peak his interest the most? Was there something he could relate to with it and was scared to be discovered? After all, "you can't choose your parents or partner." If he is indeed the Yellow King — Audrey was a victim or she may have seen a videotape of Marty's…similar to the videotape Rust found. Which may be why she's so plucked up and what she was showing her sister. Which might be why Marty act as loud and "enraged" as he did when he watched in the storage unit. Marty has a dual personality…two seperate lives. Where as Rust has just his one and he shows his abnormalities as they are.

8) Marty is the Yellow King and Rust is fully aware of it now. He is using Marty to lure him in more to the circle of the horsemen and get more information.

9) Just like the lawnmower boy has his scar of the flat spiral and could be the grandson of Tuttle and is now involved, Maggie has the spirals in her home and is the daughter of the man who could be the Yellow King. Maggie could now be involved as well.

10) Then there is Rust. Lawdddd, please don't let it be Rust. Please.

–Reasons and "evidence" for most of these theories aren't here due to the simple fact that the research has already been done by the others for the main ones like the father-in-law, Marty, and Rust as the Yellow King theories.

11) I've invested entirely too much time to this and I've finally come to realize this at #11. Goodnight.


I think that Carcosa is a place. I think the Yellow King is a bit trickier to put my mind around or flesh anything out. It could be an actual person, it could be a name of a boat that takes you to Carcosa or it could be a pagan god that these men sacrifice people too.

I think that the first scene of the dark figure walking with what appears to be a dead body then sets the place on fire may actually be the last scene of the story. Maybe Rust or Marty carrying Audrey. I just saw no evidence of a fire where Dora was found. There were no fire trucks, etc.


I predict the "Yellow King" will turn out to be the title of a monarch-like figurehead who (at this time) presides over the Tuttle "dynasty" (for lack of a better term). In my view, the grandfather (who was discussed by his former maid in episode 7) wore/wears that crown. He oversees the various rituals that take place and manages the various family/community interests. Like any monarchy, power and property are handed over to the up and coming generation of young adults (even if the "castle" is a rickety old house at the edge of a bayou). The Ledeaux bros, and the lawn mower guy with the scars, are nothing more than pagan versions of acolytes and alter boys; they find/prepare the sacrifices, the Yellow King leads the ritual, and in return those boys enjoy a certain amount of protection. It seems to me that the Tuttle family (assuming they're the ones holding the rituals) do so out of a bizarre kind of logic that leads them to think that as long as the sacrifices continue as scheduled, their wealth and influence will be maintained.

I predict that the lawn mower man will be arrested (or killed during the attempt). I think that there will be an attempt to arrest some of the higher-ups; there might be a suicide or two, but the frustrating ending will be that one or more key members will somehow avoid capture (no one said the ending had to feature a solved case).

Finally, I would like to re-watch the episodes once in a while, just 'cause of the mood and ambiance the show carries. I will not, however, be able to watch a single episode after Sunday night IF Rust or Marty get killed off for whatever reason.

Pleeeease, Marty and Rust don't get killed off!


I don't think rust commits suicide, I believe he allows himself to be killed to bring the killers out into the open. He sacrifices himself for the greater good. Episode one he said he meditates on the moment in the garden. He has said he is close to tying it off. He speaks of debts to pay. That said, I doubt we get that moment where the group in animal masks is assembled to murder Chole and then they are all outed and arrested. That would be too clean.

The land way down south with old stones where rich people go to kill appears to be a cemetery, the old stones being tombstones, probably portrayed in the finale of episode seven. Lawn mower man isn't the end all be all for this one. Like someone else said, he is responsible for obtaining the victims but he obviously isn't the rich powerful person involved.

I don't think hart's daughter said "uncle carl likes it" she said "other girls like it."

I don't know about the father in law if Maggie were a Tuttle we would know it already. That seems too obvious, I wonder how they can tie off the Audrey situation along with everything else in an hour. She may not have been abused, she may have just been talking to people who were who told her about things like that. Though I wasn't aware of Audrey using the spiral in her art. Again that would be an obvious hint that hart wouldn't miss.


Has anybody noticed:
1.When Maggie and Hart confront their daughter about the drawings she says' Uncle Carls liked it' . Who is Uncle Carls?

2.Maggie always seemed eager to distract Rust by wanting him to meet someone,settle down.
(Later.. Hart hasnt seen her or his daughters in 2 years, but than she shows up at the place where Rust works because she's worried? Worried that theyre back on the case?)

PS- Rust obliviously mawed their lawn to have a closer look in the Hart Family.
3. (ep3) Look at the picture in the last yearbook of one of the victims (given by grandfather of victim) there's one picture of a girl that doesnt seem to fit. 3rd girl on the left with striped shirt. Thats an odd looking picture of head and body!


Rust will commit suicide after solving the case. Possibly over guilt over what happend to his daughter.




I stopped reading this blog halfway through at Sarah Powers comment about Maggie's maiden name, because I think that she is on to something, but not exactly what I am thinking. I would think that obvious is too obvious for a "True Detective". I want to know what Maggie's Mom's maiden name is. Her being the one that is a witch or somehow involved with the Yellow King cult would be the left hook that many would never see coming. It would also explain where Audrey saw what she drew. Granted that does not explain it all, but I think that it would be a more simpler link to things and explanations moving forward in the mere hour that we have left. Anyone think that I could be on to something?


Hello all: I too really enjoy the show.
1. How did Maggie know where to find Russ in the last episode, it was never mention in the conversation between Maggie and Marty.
2. Maggie said that she had not heard from Marty in 2 years and he didn't really know what was going on with his daughters. It appears that Maggie and Marty have not carried on any long term relationship after the split , so what was her big concern over Marty's safety that she had to seek out Russ?


I agree Rust is deep cover. I think Rust's daughter was killed by Dora's father… his truck went off the road somewhere in TX… he died, so did Rust's daughter. Dora was killed on his daughter's birthday. That's all I got…


I think Rust is deep cover (FBI?) and Marty's father in law is definitely involved. Could his father in law be the governor? I think everything Rust has said about his daughter is untrue. The Yellow King isn't a specific person, but a group of people. I think Rust has suspected Marty over the years—that the reason he didn't leave dinner that first night was because of the fly fishing table, something there made him pause. I think Rust fakes his alcoholism. And I think, like Dora, that Audrey is being groomed to be a sacrifice… I think Dora had interactions with the killers from an early age (as evidenced in that photo at her mom's house). Her mom's migraine/headache was perhaps a result of brainwashing–same with her husband who drove his Peterbilt off the road. Perhaps he drove his truck off the road and killed Rust's daughter??


Nic Pizzollato reveals in the final episode, while he lived in Louisiana, and when he achieved "deranged enlightenment", that he was responsible for a series of similar murders.
Season two, Hollywood, in awe of his artistic achievement, comes to his defense and lobbies for a full pardon.
Hey Nic, great show.


Where there is a missing child, there is a missing parent. Dora Lange( missing father) Fontaneau (missing mother, possibly father) etc.
I think Maggie is running that family. She is not the victim in any of this. She may be getting girls from her position in the hospital, After seeing the image of the spiral drawn by one of her children and posted on the wall along with a bright yellow flyer in the living room, like the one found in Dora's diary, I think Maggie is heavily connected to the Tuttle churches.
Rust is still, always was, deep cover. I believe he was sent to LA and paired with Hart to get a beat on the scene.
I believe Hart knows things. This is especially apparent in his body language when interviewing Charlie Lange. I think he wrote something to him that he passed on the notepad when he asked for Dora's friends address.
I also believe that the officers are guardians of this 'brotherhood'. The chief at the time of the Fontaneau disappearance and report of the green eared spaghetti monster name was Childress which is also the name of one of the guards for Guy Francis in 2002.
I also am starting think that the loss of Cohles daughter is a cover story, part of his being undercover, to endear himself to Maggie. I do believe his parents history is linked or related to these events.


whatta we got:
1) dead girls from broken families
2) Drugs in their systems
3) devil nets at the scene of the crimes
4) Victims are blonde
5) Pagan ritual(s) [deer antlers, symbolic tattoos, devil nets, post-mortem positioning]
* Lawn mower man is a dead ringer for the green eared and bearded sketch.
*Marty's daughter has been abused since early childhood (pics and now group sex….more to follow I am sure.)
There is no way True Detective can wrap this up in a nice bow with one episode left. Hints of "santeria" and "the tall man with a shiny jaw [burns]".
In the end I think there will be an unholy bastardization of christianity mixed with santeria and child abuse/murder. Dark and unsolved!!! There will be blood.


Rust killed his daughter while drunk driving.
The dead girls were sacrifices. They agreed to die. They participated in their crucifixion.
We will never know the killer or The Yellow King which represents evil. Evil just beyond our reach or understanding but within all of us. Evil that we ignore, deny or mask. This is the inattention. Inattention to our own fears and truths, self-deception, masks we wear.
Both men will end up becoming what they hate and fear the most. Rust a lonely alcoholic who can't solve the crime, can't save his daughter. Marty a lonely loser who can't protect his daughters, sleeps with girls young enough to be his daughters. They each have a little evil in them. A little of The Yellow King.


In addition to below:
I think it will be discovered that Cohle
was not ever actually a police officer. There
is something about the way he described his
past jobs in robbery and narco. He probably
was heavily involved with drugs and likely
knows Ginger from the psychiatric hospital.
He has been impersonating an officer Cohle
who likely died and the files have been locked
up so no one really knows his past. I think 'Cohle'
did have a psychotic break from some event
with his daughter. In the end, Hart and Cohle
will discover together the truth about Cohle.
I think it will be incredibly sad but will not end
violently. They will find that there actually has
been killings of women and children – like everywhere.
What made these 2 murders special was the attention
brought to them by the extreme posings of the bodies.


8 years is a very long time to be working
on this case – as it's thought that Cohle has been doing
from 2002 to 2010. Something is wrong
with this. It's not like there are no suspects and
no one knows where to begin to look. He suspected
Police, LA govt and the religious leaders.
How could 8 years go by and he's still digging
up 'overlooked clues'. But, then again what else has
he been doing this long. I hate to say it because Cohle
has some incredibly mesmerizing things to say and great
insight, but he appears to be a split personality. I think
he has something to do with the murders and has been
back in the psychiatric hospital last 8 years. He just
got back out in 2010 and now there is another weird murder.
I am not sure is actually killing but he is the one creating
the posings with all the antlers and artistic stuff. I watched
episode 1 again and when he tells the other detectives " it's a crown"
to explain the antlers to them – it really struck me that it was somehow
personal to him.

Doug Brunell

What if Marty and Cohle are one in the same person, and these "occult" killings really is nothing more than child molestation (and maybe murder) that led Marty to have a psychotic break due to guilt?


It's gotta be Hart. All of those tampons? I know he has two girls but that was for stocking up elsewhere. He shot a 10-point buck a year before the first murder. He may have used his own daughter to get into the Yellow King (cult… not person). Remember gangbang barbie? Gross. Yeah, detective's curse.


I don't really have exact ideas of the ending but would like a few things answered. Rust tied up the bike gang member on his way to the meth lab. They never had closure on that and as well there were mentions of the main leader of the bike gang. I forget his name but member who made the deal with rust wanted to hide it from the leader. Also when rust and the bike gang member met the other cook at the restaurant. The other cook again mentioned that if he came again he would tell the leader. I would like to see a look back on what rust had to do with the bike gang, while he was undercover. And maybe there is a connection with his daughter being the girl injected with meth. Since this biker gang sells meth. Also when rust mentioned tasting colors, I feel that was an important part, especially being that they are looking for the yellow king. And if I'm not mistaken his date asked if it ran in the family. Which may mean rust's father could be it.


Agree with every comment Nna has made. I too think the falling out was staged -Rust and Marty have been working it since 2002 -Rust was working this whole case before going to Louisiana.


The dude that's mowing the lawn in episode 3 is named Errol. He also plays Remus on boardwalk empire. It's says he's in 3 episodes and has thus far only appeared in 1. He's a legit actor so they probably have a much bigger role for him. Not sure if he's the yellow king or not but he's definitely gonna resurface somewhere in a shady manner


I think Audry (Martys daughter) is some how involved in the devil worship and Cohle just discovered some evidence that proves it.

That lawn mower guy has to be involved some how…Cohle has a gift of knowing someones guilt and clearly wasn't happy with Marty beeping the horn.


Whomever owns the fast food restaurant or whatever business it was that had the big gold crown sign in the background of Episode 5 must be behind this. By the way, how the hell is it possible that we've all noticed the spiral artwork in Marty's house (his children's drawings proudly displayed on the wall), but the meticulous and detail oriented (and obsessed) Rust has not?


Lawnmower man with green earmuffs ("green ears") on
flavorwire dot com/441484/a-brief-up-to-date-guide-to-internet-theories-about-true-detective/


This may be out of left field… I think the TWO lawn mowing incidents are connected. I believe Marty IS a company man who went along with department's conspiracy but maybe unknowning of how large it's scope went. I think he freaks out on Rust mowing his lawn b/c unmowed lawns are the ID of people loyal to the "company." Unmowed lawns also represent houses unprotected by a man of the house and therefore the children are vulnerable. The company sends out this lawnmower man to pick up kids from these types of houses knowing it's hard to recover a kidnapped kid from the bayou. I think Marty knows that "law mowing" is a company tool but I don't think he suspects they take "good" kids. That's the type of tunnel vision logic Marty would have: "I'll go along with a bad thing if that's how the system works as long as it doesn't hurt good kids." Marty's oldest learns about sex from this lawnmower man which seems to be deliberate but I'm not sure why… Also why didn't Marty talk to the lawnmower man? Marty's in on the scam b/c his loyalty is to "the company," because that's how men get warped, they "always short change the wrong things." (like Marty's family)


Could Maggie's Dad be involved? She lied with such ease about not knowing what happened between Cohle & Hart. Is she covering for both Hart & Cohle because she knows all about the "important people" involved & wants them to be brought to justice? Hart always eludes to the fact that things kept happening "right under his nose"? I too think Cohle's daughter has been in an abusive relationship. Possibly the grandfather? Unusual they developed Maggie's parents on their weekend visit. Especially conversation Marty had w/her Dad.
Unhappy spiteful wife (Maggie's Mom) & arrogant Dad. I think Maggie's Dad may be involved in this "cult" thing. Just a feeling. Something has to come out again about Cohle's daughter & how her death pertains to all this. I'll be sad when this series is done. So intriguing & Matthew's acting is incredible. Hope he wins an Oscar this Sunday night for Dallas Buyer's club. He will surely win an Emmy for True Detective


Ya know, I don't think it's _C0hle's_ infidelity with Maggie. It was _Maggie's_ infidelity with Cohle. She used him, the little witch-with-a-b. And how calmly she lies about the part she played in driving the two of them apart in 2002.


Also, remember the "mowing the lawn" metaphor can apply not only to Rust mowing the lawn and the infidelity with Maggie, but to the creepy guy mowing the lawn at the school. I think there is a possibility that the cult is incestuous, and the ritual involves fathers and daughters. This might further suggest that Cohle either intentionally or sub-consciously killed his daughter to avoid the incest, or "sin of being a father."


Killer is blonde haired male scarred face riding lawn tractor at shut down school. Just a guess


Ok, at this point, I have no idea. And I will just lean back and enjoy the ride, the last two episodes. Great show, great writing, phenomenal acting…HBO, Nic, Cary, cast-we thank you!!


I think Rust is undercover. I think the killings are staged by him as a part of his cover, i.e., they aren't real killings. I think there is no Yellow King, and Rust has studied serial killers to create an elaborate narrative that will distract law enforcement from his investigation. I think he is trapped in a perpetual state of having to be undercover at their beck and call in order to avoid prison for killing the meth head who injected his baby. I think he's trying to bring the corrupt law enforcement down which will lead to his eventual release from having to be undercover. I think that he stages a fight with Hart so that his going off the grid will appear real. I think he holds his staging equipment in his storage locker along with the proof that it has been all staged. I think his plan is in danger of being uncovered, so he goes off the grid. I think that law enforcement then takes up his mythology of the yellow king to cover up their illegal dealings and distract from some kind of drug sale/movements. (hiding the evidence in the midst of another "crime". I think he is stalking the crime scenes to find a way of bringing the whole operation down. I think Marty is pissed that Cohle has been spying on him without him knowing it- and that is why I think Cohle explains to Marty that he would be nothing without him.


it will end with emmys


I know this may sound a little too simplistic reading all the creative theories submitted by the followers of the series, but here goes; in episode two when Cohle and Hart visit Preacher Theriot, their lead comes from a Yellow Flyer with a picture of the Lord/Savior/Jesus/KING? on the advertisement. I understand about Chamber's stories and his "Yellow King", but could it possibly be a very obvious clue, however contrite? After all, one thing we do know, is that Dora visited that rival tent ministry accompanied by a tall man with a possible scarred face. (actual contact with the ministry) The drawing of the antler wearing being, at the burned down church; Theriot claimed was done by the children,(stolen drugged children?) but looking very much like the antlers Dora was found wearing, as well as the spiral of birds over the swamp grasses at the burned church(Theriot's church) resembling the tattoo's found on Dora's back, and reported by Dora's husband to be worn by Ledoux as well.
I agree with the person's opinion that if there is a king,(Yellow?) there must be followers, implying some type of cult, with undertones of very important people being involved.
The latest clip I saw deals with tonight's episode, it features Marty and Rust in a sort of heated confrontation, apparently Marty is getting pressure because Cohle is questioning some of these influential people and Marty is catching the flack. Cohle keeps repeating write the report Marty.
Whether this has to do with the breech in their relationship is yet to be seen, but it looks as though it occurred before Rust went rouge and started showing up at all those unsolved murder scenes.(detectives pictures placing him at the crime scenes)
Once more HBO said the last episode deals with an overlooked detail that provides Cohle and Hart a lead in the 17 year old case, to me it sounds like it can't be the detectives however corrupt or dark they may have become.


Nina, all very good points and yes, I agree. He knows so much about what is going on because he has been exposed to it prior to the Lange case. Also, "why the antlers?" Never thought about it but I believe you're spot on as if it's a new thing they began doing.


Ok, I know I may be the only one that thinks Rust's Dad is involved in this thing. I still think there are many data points to suggest this:

1. Ledoux saying "I know you. I've seen you in my dreams" Would explain if he has seen Rust's Dad but was in a drug haze so they look alike

2. Dora Lange was found on the anniversary of Rust's daughters death. Who would else would have known about this? Could be coincidental but…..

3. Rust's dad is talked about a lot. We know Rust and his dad moved to Alaska but Rust moved back to Texas. Rust said his dad considered him "disloyal".

4. It was said that Rust's dad hasnt been seen in 30 years. I dont recall who said this.

5. When they are tracking Ledoux and Marty is telling the cops about it, he says "Rust's dad taught him to track". Again, why mention this, his dad, yet again.

6. When going undercover in the biker gang, Rust mentions going to see his father. Again, why use the father as an excuse/device.

7. When Rust talks about his daughter dying without pain and it being beautiful, really, he says that she spared him "the sin of being a father". I believe that sin would be because fathers in his family do terrible things to their daughters. I think it's telling that he says the "sins of 'being' a Father. After all, Rust talks a lot about people needing to be around to procreate as a good thing(their only purpose), not as a bad thing.

8. Lastly, and this one just struck me, Dewall calls Rust "Son"; “And I don’t like your face. It makes me want to do things to it…There’s a shadow on you, son.” Maybe a stretch, but why would Dewall call him 'Son', doesnt seem like a huge difference to refer to him that way. Also, as much as it's 'cool' to say that "your face makes me want to do things to it", it is strange, why 'his' face.

And I think the circle that keeps getting referenced is "the cycle" of abuse. Literal, not metaphysical, the cycle of continued abuse that happens in families. I dont believe his dad is the only one involved, but he's involved. Too many mentions of someone that should be unimportant. Things continuing 'again and again and again' is this cycle.


It's really difficult at this point to come up with a solid case on who has done it but here are my thoughts so far:
– The killer's nickname is the 'Yellow King'. As a king, he must have subjects. Therefore the 'Yellow King' heads a cult with several followers, some highly influential in the state of Louisiana.
– This cult most probably mixes Christian, Satanist and Paganistic rituals, and as a result the 'Yellow King' must offer human sacrifices to whatever they worship.
– Reggie Ledoux was a member of this cult. Tuttle and Theriot too.
– The 'Yellow King' attended reverend Tuttle's religious school.
– Hart and Cohle eventually figured out that Ledoux was not the killer, and faked their fall-out so that Cohle could leave the force, get off the map and investigate in the shadow and do whatever needed to be done to get to the 'Yellow King' (e.g. killing Tuttle). Remember that Cohle used to be an undercover cop.
– As far as who the 'Yellow King' is, I really have no clue. Some say it's Cohle's dad, but I'd go for the weird dude that was mowing the lawn in episode 3.

Lucas Isely

Choles survivalist father turns out to be the killer.


The King in Yellow in the Chambers stories was a dynastic line, as I remember. Could it be that Reginald Ledoux (second king) was the King in yellow before Marty killed him and assumed the title for himself. Right after the killing, we see his daughters fighting over a diadem with tattered streamers (the King in Tatters). The Ledoux leads were pretty much all Hart- ran the police check while Cohle was investigating the Light of Day school, tracked down the the crank dealer who led them to the Iron Crusaders. Also, tons of crown, yellow, spiral, antler allusions in his house.

Sarah Powers

Here's something nagging at me: we don't know Maggie's maiden name, right? Marty never addressed his in-laws as "Mr. & Mrs. So and So" at any point… I wonder if that may mean something. Just spitballing ideas based on what we haven't seen or heard yet.


I think it's Cohle's dad who did it. cohle had exposure to the cult when he was a kid. repressed the memories. left. now he has to face it.


I don't think Cohle or Hart are part of the cult, or whatever this group is. I think Hart is unwittingly related to it, but is too willing to ignore what's under his nose because he wants life to be easy and uncomplicated. I think Cohle has been investigating this cult since long before he showed up in Louisiana. I think Hart and Cohle have been secretly working together since their "altercation" in 2002. That altercation may have been about Cohle waking Hart up to the realities of what's been going on right under Hart's nose, and I think that may also be what drove Maggie and Hart apart for good. I think something very bad happens to Audrey and that's why Hart agrees to secretly help Cohle, who goes off-grid, to work the case.


I totally think Rust's Dad is involved. I agree, he is mentioned way too much. Also< I think it explains why Ledoux said " I know who you are". In a drugged haze, Rust's dad would appear to be Rust.


I hope it's not supernatural . . . I would be insulted . . . really. I think the clues so far are too obvious and over thought. If as those speculating Hart and Maggie, her father and the Governor and the priest are all involved . . . . and Cohle not catching on, or if he did allow it to continue for so many years . . . I'd be disturbed by that. Especially since with conspiracies, as they go, are challenging in that you rely on all involved to keep their mouth shut . . . unlikely given our human behavior. No . . . . there's a surprise here. I hope.


This show has a weird disconnected quality to it, although it raises some interest philosophical questions. I think Marty is involved somehow but I'm not sure to what extent. There are just too many signs to ignore: his last name, the deer symbolism, his hair, the poster, the spiral drawing in his home, the list goes on. Maybe he's the Yellow King in a metaphorical sense. Perhaps there's a supernatural revelation to conclude the season, but I think that's unlikely.


HBO, states that the last episode deals with an overlooked detail that provides Hart and Cohle with a new lead in the 17 year old case. I would gather, that sort of implies that neither is truly the "Yellow King" nor involved directly in the serial killings.
I believe it was an insult to Cohles intelligence that "he" was unaware the killer was still out there until his interrogation of the robber/murderer. The confessed information about the "Yellow King" became his sort of wake-up call, and set him once more on his quest to see this thing through to a final conclusion, that coupled with the realization that there have been many more victims then he, or Marty first thought.
I think the biker episode was intended to show the audience to what extent Cohle and Marty would go to, to get their man, no matter what it takes; even if they have to lie to get it done; the proverbial question; does the end justify the means was surely implied in both episodes four and five, and maybe the underlying theme of the whole series.
Whether we have been introduced to the killer/killers/cult members or not, doesn't seem as important as wanting to see someone, anyone brought to justice, or should I say punished, for the atrocities committed over the seventeen year period. Speculate all you want on who did it; we just want someone to answer for the crimes.
Perhaps that's the point, two imperfect detectives trying to make things right even though they themselves are not. I sure wouldn't be shocked if the story line ends with the death of one if not both detectives both dealing needless to say, with their own demons.


Oh and I forgot about the ten point buck Marty says he hunted. (The antlers on Dora Lang have ten points). Also, Marty makes up that theory about the mentally disabled man at the tent church group, possibly to try to distract Rust.


I think there's a good chance that Marty is the Yellow King. I've been doing some reading online and here is some of the evidence for that theory:
-A similar spiral shape to the one on Dora Kelly Lang's back was spotted on Marty's wall.
-Marty's hair is yellow, and in a poster for True Detective, they cut off the image of Marty at his CROWN on his head.
-Marty shot Reggie Ladeau, maybe to close the case so the murders wouldn't further be investigated, or maybe Reggie Ladeau knew about Marty being the Yellow King.
-The title: "True Detective" There are two detectives, but it's singular in the title, meaning either Rust or Marty is not "true." It would be too obvious to have Rust be the untrue detective and the murderer.
-When Rust was going to investigate the school near where the lawnmower was mowing, Marty pulled him away with more evidence about Charlie Lang and Reggie Ladeau.
-Marty's daughters fight over a princess crown that then goes up into the tree. If are princesses, and Marty is their dad, then Marty is the king.


I think rust is still undercover for the DEA and investigating that department. I think hart knows this as well and they haven't really stopped talking. Based on the first episode of that girl that was chased, I think the lawn mower at the school (matches her description) is the murderer, not sure who runs operation though.

Paul Raley

The writing is so fine on "True D." Especially in the scene where Rust stops by Marty's house and mows his lawn. When I was in college in Pittsburgh, PA, "Mowing a friend's lawn" was a phrase that meant "Stealing a buddy's girlfriend." Could that have been what Marty was referring to when he found Rust t his house when he was off somewhere? Was he accusing Rust and Maggie of having an affair? Great writing, guys. Paul Raley ( sitcom writer in Hollywood).


1) Reggie DOES have the "spiral" mark on him but it's branded and you have to look hard….you can see it a lot better in HD.

2) Rust asks Marty if he's ever been deer hunting. In fact he has! 10 pointer 2 years ago…..what did Dora have on her head? 10 point buck antlers.

3) The Promise Keepers, Maggie, the daughter and the grandfather (Maggie's father) are all involved in some way but I can't piece it together.

Also, if you look at the original posters they put up just before the series started, the poster shows both Marty and Rust. The top (or crown) or Marty's head is cut off by the top edge of the poster and then appears on the bottom half making it look like someone made a mistake and should have moved the picture down more. But Marty is a toe head….blonde….yellow…..and that top portion of his head that shows at the bottom poster the "crown" of his head. Check it out.


Kimball – Thank you. I still wasn't able to see it, don't know how Charlie did and, for me, doesn't make sense . . . . I'll keep watching because, frankly, I'm stumped. I don't think it is Cohle and I don't think it's Marty either. I am enjoying this show. The writing is great and I'm enjoying the performances of all the cast. Thank you.


I noticed after going back and watching episode 1 for third time that the majors name is Quesada. Quesada was an alternate surname for Don Quixote. With Cohle's sense of reality I have to wonder if this just a nod to a literary great or is it a clue to our story. Is Cohle's "tilting at windmills"? I don't believe the name is just coincidence. With the superb writing on this show it would seem that every detail has meaning.


Has anyone else noticed that Reggie didn't have the spiral tat Charlie reported to Rust and Marty when they questioned him the second time?


Don't know how it ends but I think present day Cohle is undercover either with a branch or on his own and his lock up is where he is conducting his investigation into the murders, cult and how deep it goes. He probably only got himself saw at the present day murder so they would drag him in an he could get close to the files and 'get a read' on the officers conducting the investigation.


I'm say it. I think its possible there will be some kind of supernatural ending. An end of times type scenario. The story takes place in 2012 and not 2014. Reggie Ledoux was shot in the right side of the head and has all those satanic tattoos, and Ledoux said you’re going to do this again. The seven years of relative peace from 1995 to 2002.


Is the detail the bit about Cohle, while doing undercover work in Texas, kills a drug dealer who injected his own daughter with crystal meth to "purify her"?

I've seen the Cohle's father theory and I'm not buying it. I think it's an unfair ending and I don't think these writers would trick their audience like that. I can maybe believe that Cohle starts recalling his father's ramblings and they're similar to the crazy-talk re the Yellow King/Carcosa he's hearing in this case, and then goes back to research that faux-mythology based on Chambers' stories and realizes that that's the key. If it's Cohle's father — if he's alive and driving this, I'm gonna be pretty disappointed, though.

I think this all has to come back to Hart's personal life somehow, and in no small part to Maggie. The connection between the killings and the Barbie doll scenario and drawings and later acting out and sexually degrading behavior is too strong and has been repeated too often to be just a red herring.

Also, the school photo from the Light of the Way school where Cohle finds all those devil-catchers is going to be a big clue — did all those kids grow up to be characters we've seen so far — Maggie, Hart, Theriot, the Fontenot girl's parents, et al.?

Plus, this all leads to powerful people, and I don't think Cohle's father sounds like he somehow became a powerful person unbeknownst to Cohle.

Jo Ann Somers

WOW….brilliant work on every level! I am loving it and will cry to see it end in just 3 weeks.
Here is what I think about and where I believe the story going from here.
One of the most important aspects is that Audry was sexually abused and is now acting out . Most likely by someone in the group that is responsible for all of the murder and abuse. A likely person in this group is Maggie's father. Maggie may have also been abused when she was a child . I think that Russ was sent to La specifically to work on this case because the group of perverts goes so deep and wide that it includes high state government and the church. No one from inside the state could have been trusted or would have had the skills needed to do the investigation of this magnitude. Russ had all the right stuff to do this job. He had just worked under cover for four years. Russ is a true detective and likes to work "off the grid". That way he can do what he thinks needs to be done without having to answer for his actions. No doubt he is a wounded man, which may have started with the death of his daughter. Her death may have been an accident, but Russ may have been responsible for the car accident himself.
About the king. I have more questions than answers. I'm thinking it could have been a costume worn during a ceremonial ritual. Dora writes about it in her diary during the time before her death when she was so excited about going to church. But why did the pharmacy killer know about it and why was Russ angry enough to risk the loss of a double murder confession to act on his anger. Russ used words to break Dora's ex-husband at the end of that interrogation. Did he call the pharmacy killer and say something to him that caused him to kill himself? Lots of questions.


While not conclusive evidence that they've been working together the whole time, HBO did a behind the scenes of True Detective before the season started and there is a one second clip of Rust and Marty in what looks to be present day. Rust has long hair and Marty has almost no hair. It appears the have some old case files out while drinking a couple of cold ones.


Francisco N- I agree that there has to be some connection between Marty's daughter creating inappropriate sexual scenes with dolls and drawings. In real sexual abuse investigations, this is a dead giveaway that the child is being abused (or more innocently, has seen parents having sex or snuck a look when parents watching porn.) Marty talked about being "inattentive" to what was going on at home. Whether this leads back to Marty or possibly father in law will be interesting.
OK, another way out theory/possible clue I have not seen mentioned. Tattoo on Reggie Ledoux's right breast could be a younger Cohle. (Do Google image search for "Reggie Ledoux.")

Francisco N.

CONTINUED- Marty's father in law was introduced, but why? He is characterized as rude, and also seems to have wealthy connections like are suggested by high up officials being involved. Also, I believe he scenes with Marty's daughter Audrey are important; how did she see the crimes scene she created with the dolls? Or the dead, naked Barbie? Possibly something at her grandfathers house? Michelle Monaghan's recent interview should be considered; the women in the series (especially Maggie) need to be taken seriously. Is there a filial conspiracy going on in the Deep South? 3 episodes left until we find out.

Francisco N

I never considered Rust as the perpetrator; when interrogating the pharmacy shooter in 2002, the shooter wouldn't talk about the Yellow King TO THE YELLOW KING!
Secondly, I wanted to consider Marty as the killer with police officials and government officials in on it, but I would be surprised if the show went this route because it is likely too much of a stretch. Also, LaDoux's reaction when he sees Marty before he is killed is not telling enough to make this a possibility. And finally, Marty talks to Cohle about wanting to call LaDoux in to the station instead of going straight after him.
My take on the murderer is that it is right under Marty's nose; just in the other direction.


Can't believe that all tidbits of evidence and information gather during the interviews and investigations leading to shooting of Ledoux were ignored, kicked to the wayside and overlooked; especially by Rust. Seems to me, being so detail oriented he would have wanted everything to fit, and fit snugly.
Dora's husband told Marty and Rust that Ledoux had a spiral tattoo on his shoulder, not evident when Ledoux was supposedly shot (in the head) by Marty. Sooooo, was it in fact Ledoux; or is he a twin; do they have the right bad guy????
Where is the scarred face man reported to have accompanied Dora to the tent rivals?
I'm just a little disappointed it took the interrogation/confession and the references to the "Yellow King" for Rust to get suspicious, and not sooner.
As for Marty; what about his daughter? At any point did he suspect she was being abused; after all, at a very early age she was acting out scenes of rape with her dolls.


I'm starting to think it was Marty! He's the one that lead Russ to Reggie LeDoux. The one who led him to that biker bang. The one who shot Reggie right after Reggie looked at him. He's volatile – look at how he treats his former mistress – his daughter is acting out as if she knew something, he looks contemplatively into his locker right after the scene where Russ learns from that double murder guy that the case has not been solved. Marty seems reluctant about getting fingerprints off the phone from which the call to that prisoner was made. I think Russ has gone off the grid to pursue this mystery, and it's taking him right back in a circle to Marty. In Russ's locker are probably clues about the investigation. But it's all gonna end with Marty as the killer, in my opinion.


Russ says something to the detectives when they point the finger at him in the interview/interrogation – "You guys know people in high places?" It is my belief that Russ purposely finds a way out of his job to completely disconnect because he knows this is something way above all of their heads, i.e. government officials, guards from the prison, a massive occult group that has tentacles far reaching. Someone else wrote here, and I like it, that Russ and Marty have been working together all these years – that would truly be a great twist – and further having relevance to the name of the show "true detective" – but even if they have not worked together, Russ is the true detective – and there is no doubt in my mind he has been stalking these murders as a citizen because NO ONE can be trusted, and he knows that!

Marty makes a comment at one point to the detectives something like "Are you sure Russ wasn't sizing you two up?" — there is no way Russ did not know exactly why he was called in to talk to them. He's known all along they suspected him. This is the guy who was the best interrogator in the state, and could get confessions from anyone. the show purposely makes a point of showing Russ is very smart, thoughtful, and purposeful in his methods. Yes, he's willing to do what has to be done (Setting up crime scene after Marty emotionally shot that creep), but like he said, that guy was a piece of shit and deserved to die anyway!

Russ's past is a slow boil, but we know his daughter died. We know he is very well versed in theology … why? My guess is Russ was a very good family man, religious, and live within the lines of morality, and then his daughter was taken from him, and he watched his live unravel and spiral downward taking him to a place of hatred toward a God that would allow such a thing in a good man's life – it is why he is judgmental toward Marty's life, and also why he stood up and left on Marty's wife when she snipped at him about what kind of man he was – He didn't say a word, he simply stood up and left – silence is golden. She knows not a thing of what he's been through or his life, and he's not gonna share it with anyone.

This is going to be good, but I have to say I'm upset that Woody and Matthew will only be in the first season, and then it's a whole new story. I mean, one season of these two incredible characters … they will never matched such a team and my prediction the show will suffer because of it. Forever people will say, this season was good BUT … the first was the best!

I thought I had found my Breaking Bad for the next four years, but once again I'll cry when True Detective ends this season.



Can't wait to find out.

I think Rust and Marty have continued to work together from 2002-2012 in secret. They will remain partners until the end. Theirs will be the "truest" relationship on the show.

Episodes 3-5 were mostly a wild goose chase.

Of primary importance are the report of the one girl describing a "Spaghetti Monster" and the other missing/moved girl whose playhouse had the sculpture in it from episode 1, as well as all of the missing person reports "filed in error" shown in episode 5.

What's up with the 1987 billboard "Do you know who killed me?" Is this when the murders started? Is this when Rust's daughter was killed (likely accidentally by him)?

Keep thinking of that opening scene…fields being set ablaze and two people making their way out…Marty helping an injured Cohle after the final showdown?

Can't wait to find out.


This series is blowing my mind!!!! I'm loving every second of it :)


Here's my theory: Tuttle (the preacher guy from early in the show) dies in 2010, but the newest murder happens in 2012. Since it's two years apart, there is someone involved even higher than Tuttle, which leads me to believe it's his cousin, who is the Governor of the state. To me, this becomes much more obvious as the show keeps going, but the thing about this show is that they're going to keep feeding us information to pull us towards this conclusion, which may be correct, but there will be another surprise involvement from someone "right under our nose." Marty? Maggie? Maggie's father? Rust? No way to tell. Regardless, this show is great and I'm excited to see how it ends.


I haven't seen episode 5 yet, so maybe I'll change my mind, but at the moment, I think that the 2007 murder was perpetrated by Marty, in an attempt to frame Rust for all of the murders. His motive is probably whatever it was that destroyed their partnership. Whoever it was that said nearly everything Marty says is a lie, I totally agree – at least, with reference to the 2007 police interview. Almost all of it seems calculated to throw suspicion on Rust, despite his feigned respect.
Mr. Massengale, I believe Rust did, in fact, notice the spiral in the flock. The snippet of the 2007 interview used there as voiceover indicates that he thought it was an hallucination – an hallucination that he thinks may have pointed him in the right direction (towards the painting in the burnt church).


i am guessing there is a massive occult group run by the christian church/gov officials that Ledoux was suppling children for. maybe maggie bought into it through her father or something…

Harold Massengale

Did anyone else notice when the two were out in the country looking for the church, I believe, that when the flock of birds that were scared skyward that their flight path looked exactly like the 'swirl' marking? I was really surprised Rust didn't pick up on that as he looked straight at them.

J Cana

Maggie is involved, when the little girl throws the crown into the tree , it has the same spiral as the tattoos and marks on the deceased. Great show , I can't wait for each new episode.


They never spoke to the girl who escaped from the Yellow King and gave the description for the police sketch. That is who they missed.

Cohle is the True Detective in this program and has been working on the case since 2002. Maggie knows something about what has destroyed Audrey, but I don't know if it involves Marty or her father. Marty joined Promise Keepers, which is not a good sign. And yes, Shea Whigham will return as a central character.

Best television show ever. I needed research to understand each and every camera frame. This is a thinking person's script, and hallelujah for the brilliant writing, directing, and acting. Thank you for not dumbing it down.


I believe Marty is in on the Yellow King cult killings. I think nearly everything he says is a lie


Wow! What a genius of a show. I believe the ending will be the not so obvious…meaning the killer is right there in front of us. It's either Maggie or her father or both. Love the show! Six feet under, Dexter, Homeland, tremendous, now this… TD!

Tim w.

Obviously, the daughter has something to do with the ending
Why else would u randomly make her a 'main' character out of the blue?


I can definitely see the fall being something to do with Maggie, I guess this season is going to end with even more questions , I'm loving every second of it though.


supposedly – don't know if it's true, or not. but I'm hearing that apparently a lot of things are going to be explained as the show comes to a close.


I think the falling out between Rust & Marty has got something to do with Maggie. Maybe Rust sleeps with her or tells her Marty is cheating again. Whatever it is, it will be pivotal to the ending.


I have no clue where it will lead and that's why I'm so impressed and excited. I saw a screen grab where a tattoo resembling Cohle is seen on Ledoux's chest.. I read the io9 article on the literary references of the show and am violently excited about the conclusion of the season. I doubt anyone can guess the outcome of this narrative, and the thought of someone spoiling it makes me queasy. Hell yes for quality TV.


True Detective is genius. Writing genius. Acting genius. Production Design genius. And cinematography genius (especially the extended tracking shot on the fourth episode), the whole series is mind blowing.


I am crazy to think that season's opening image was a field being lit on fire? I think the finale is going to to see Rust & Martin just finally destroying everyone. Honestly have not been this engaged in a TV show since LOST.

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