**SPOILERS AHEAD** No, “True Detective” is nothing like the first season with Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson — but that’s not a bad thing. Season two is shaping up to be its own fascinating beast, and two episodes deep, there is still so much more to unravel. And one character that is still somewhat enigmatic is highway patrolman Paul Woodrugh.
All we know thus far is that he’s been sidelined from his job thanks to a celebrity making a baseless accusation that he requested sexual services to get her out of a jam. He’s broken up with his girlfriend with whom he’s been emotionally distant, and there’s a strange undercurrent in his relationship to his mother. However, chatting with The Daily Beast, Kitsch teases that we’ve only scratched the surface with his character and that there’s tough path he’ll travel as we go deeper into the season.
Before we to that though, Kitsch clarifies that yes, Paul was popping Viagra in episode one before having sex with this girlfriend. And there’s even more to come as Paul’s futher layers are unpeeled.
“Who we are comes from our past—our upbringing (or lack thereof), and fatherhood, and what it is to be a man,” the actor said. “With Paul, you really do see how much shame he carries, and it slowly unfolds throughout. I will say that in Episodes 4 and 5, you really see this guy fall. And the deeper we get into the season, the more desperate Paul gets for having to hold that secret and hide who he really is. It’s pretty fucking tragic to not be able to be free, or to hold shame about something like that.”
“We see beats with my mom of where Paul has come from, and where the wounds started,” Kitsch continued. “It’s pretty diabolical, man—living and growing up with a woman in a one-bedroom trailer who was a dancer in Vegas. There’s a scene in Episode 5 that completely unwinds everything, including his entire relationship with his mom. He’s like a 10-year-old kid in that scene, though, if you think about it. It’s a beautiful thing when you see what happens when he goes back to his mom and tries to tell her certain things, and her reaction is basically what he’s been dealing with for the past 30 years.”
And it really sounds like Paul is going to become the emotional center of the show, with Kitsch also revealing an intriguing sequence on the horizon. “There’s a scene in Episode 4 where Paul just melts down in front of Farrell’s character, and I came out of that wishing we had more scenes like that between these characters because they’re both so fucked up and could seek help within one another. There’s a relatability factor there that’s really fuckin’ intense,” Kitsch said.
Speaking of stuff to come, there’s still Colin Farrell‘s fate after that surprising ending to last week’s episode. And the logline for this Sunday’s episode “Maybe Tomorrow“: Paul (Taylor Kitsch) works the prostitute angle, while Frank (Vince Vaughn) receives the first casualty in a secret war, and steps back into a world he’d left behind.
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