Grab your trapper hats and your thickest Minnesota accents everyone because “Fargo” is back!
We’re in 2010 this season so you can resume yelling “just use your cell phone!” at the screen and not feel anachronistic.
“The Law of Vacant Places” is a probability method used in bridge to determine the location of any particular card across the hands of all players. It is not the right to live in an empty apartment rent-free if you are able to break in, as the police so helpfully informed me.
I’ll be your tour guide through the twisted world of Noah Hawley’s brain. Please keep your hands inside the Corvett at all times.
Make sure you’ve covered up any dairy products because we’re about to get hip deep in SPOILERS:
1) Picture It: East Berlin, 1988.
I know the show never actually takes place in Fargo, ND but we are WAY off the map here.
This opening scene doesn’t connect yet to the rest of our story but it does, thematically, serve to underline the “Fargo” approach to storytelling. Most people discuss the idea of “truth” when talking about this show but it’s a lot more about “perception.” The only “truth” in “Fargo" is death. Hawley’s work, even on “Marvel’s Fox’s FX Presents Legion,” explores how perception can alter reality; change what is real into something entirely new; reshape the world in one’s own image.
Or maybe it’s just about fun accents and cold weather IDK gang. Why stuff always gotta be so heavy?
2) Starring Ewan McGregor…
Acting schools: fire your teachers and just run this season for students. The subtleties in McGregor’s two performances, how he’s able to convey the insecurities of both men in different ways, is a master class in screen acting. Emmit is all extrovert and projection, hoping his shine will distract people from his darker deeds.
3) …and Ewwwww-an McGregor
Ray, meanwhile, is put upon and powerless. “Fargo” is propelled by small men with lofty dreams who feel the world is holding them back, and this year that is Ray. It pushes him, to paraphrase poet laureate Chester Bennington, one step closer to the edge. And he’s about to break. But in the end, it doesn’t even matter. He’s become so numb. Something something Collision Course ft. Jay-Z.
4) ACE HOLE
Ray’s Corvette is a thing of beauty. It’s one of those character accessories that silently tells you all you need to know about a person.
Can we get a spinoff of the Corvette? Ray can always be “on vacation” or “taking a bath,” that’s just how spinoffs work. Maybe he moves in with Maurice? Toss in a Geo Tracker as its best friend and a wise old Mac Truck - HELLO FX I AM OVER HERE PRINTING MONEY FOR YOU JEEZ.
5) Nikki Nikki Nikki…
Everyone will be talking about Ewan McGregor all season but Mary Elizabeth Winstead is going to be the actor I’m watching until the finale. She’s damn good in this role, slowly collecting momentum across the episode until she’s literally raining death on her enemies.
Ray may have come up with the game plan but Nikki is the woman who’s going to run the ball into the end zone. Or the A/C into the brain.
6) Pee Break
I’ve never been more turned on by men peeing than I was during this sequence, and I’ve never been turned on by men peeing.
Hawley directed this like it was a meet cute at a Parisian wine bar.
Sometimes art has something big to say about the world and sometimes it just wants to make a beautiful joke about bodily functions.
7) “Some people call me Maurice”
Everything about this doofus is pure gold. Scoot McNairy is great. His delivery of “Allegedly” made me laugh every time I rewatched this episode to write this recap (20). I’m not at the end of the episode yet but I really expect this character to make an impact.
8) “A stamp.”
All of this over a stamp? See, this is why I got rid of my comic books. I don’t need some meth’d up nerd breaking into my home to steal my CGC graded 9.8 copy of “Amazing Spider-Man” #300.
If any meth’d up nerd is gonna handle my comics, it’s me.
9) TFW You Realize The Creep That Loaned You A Miliion Dollars Is A Real Creep
A lot of the episode centered around poor choices that Ray has made but come on, Emmit, why would you ever borrow a million dollars from a guy that makes this face:
10) “Happy birthday or whatever.”
Here ya go kid, hope you like crap!
11) It’s All Connected, Maaaaan!
OMG ENNIS STUSSY WAS WATCHING SEASON 02 OF FARGO WHAT DOES IT MEAN WHO WATCHES THE WATCHMEN
(h/t to Redditor Wonsan)
12) Eden Valley =/= Eden Prairie
This is an honest stoner mistake. I grew up in Western PA where they are obsessed with the word Beaver (Beaver Valley, Beaver Falls, South Beaver, Beaver) so I get it.
It’s like getting stoned, making dinner, eating it, and completely forgetting you’d already ordered a pizza until your doorbell rings. I’ve most definitely not done this.
13) Butt Is It Art?
THIS IS WHY WE PAY FOR CABLE.
You’re not gonna get this kind of hot business on CBS, no sir. If you wanna know how long a man’s ass crack can be, come to FX!
It also begs the question - does Emmit’s butt look the same?
14) “Cuz I speak on the pompatus of love”
Ah, Maurice. The gift that keeps on giving. His impromptu appearance during Ray and Nikki’s bath led to my favorite exchange of the episode:
I’d love for him to pop up through the rest of the season and comment on whatever is happening in whatever room he’s in. This is the character find of 2017 for su–
15) Feel The Breeze
Air Conditioner: you should find yourself a safehouse or a relative close by. Lay low for a while, because you’re probably wanted for murder.
16) Creepy Tibetan Gargle Music
Fargo is full of great music. This week’s bangers:
Crazy On You
17) “Mommy’s gotta work now.”
AKA: “Ray, you f*cked.”
Police officers in “Fargo” have the dogged persistence of Instagram reminding you that your Facebook friends are on Instagram. They will not stop until they get their man, or until you are following your childhood pediatrician on Instagram.
The clock is now ticking on both of the Stussy boys. Only seven days ’til our next episode; until then, GIT OUT!