True Detective Season 3′s finale was tonight and it was disappointing.
If you don’t want to know the spoilers for the season, read this review instead.
Episode 8 Finale
Wayne is now in trouble with his superiors because of the article that Amelia wrote. He’s given a choice–write a statement calling her a liar or be demoted to the public information unit where he’ll be a glorified secretary. He chooses the demotion and proposes to Amelia.
Hoyt takes Wayne out into the woods to “talk” but basically he wants to find out how much Harris James told them. Wayne doesn’t tell him anything so he leaves Wayne in the woods to walk home. But before he leaves he tells Wayne that as long as the police are looking for Julie she won’t be safe because then the bad guys are looking for her too. The best thing would be if everyone stopped looking.
After the District Attorney closes the case for a second time (blaming Tom Purcell), Wayne quits. We seem him years later working as Head of Security of a small community college where Amelia is a professor. They’re very happy.
Wayne and Roland talk to Harris James’ widow. She tells them a black man with a milky eye and scar named Junius came to their house several weeks after Harris’s disappearance and asked if he found the girl. At the time she was scared of Junius and thought he was talking about Harris being unfaithful.
Wayne and Roland break into the Hoyt compound and find the basement room that’s all pink. It locks from the outside and has two beds inside, consistent with the belief that Hoyt’s daughter Isabel kidnapped Julie and kept her in the ‘pink rooms’.
Roland has a friend in the DMV who locates an address for Junius Watts. They go there and he tells them the entire story. First, he’s been waiting for them to find him because he was the car parked in front of Wayne’s house that night when they came outside. Second, Julie is dead. Ellen Hoyt got sick so Junius helped raise Isabel then as an adult Isabel’s husband and daughter died in a car crash. Isabel stopped talking. Then one night she runs out and gets in a car crash. Harris James was a highway patrolman at the time and covered up the car crash. After that he went to work for Hoyt. In 1979 there was a Hoyt employee picnic held at the compound and Miss Isabel spoke for the first time in years. She’d seen Julie Purcell and thought it was her daughter Mary. So Hoyt approached Lucy Purcell and asked that Isabel be allowed to play with Julie. Lucy demanded money and that Will be there to protect Julie. On November 7, 1980, they were playing hide and seek in the park with Isabel and Junius. It was Will’s turn to find them and when he found Julie with Isabel, Isabel pushed him away and he fell on a rock and died. Julie was hysterical, so Junius put Will in the cave then took Julie home with them. Harris James covered up Julie’s disappearance by putting her dress and Will’s backpack in Woodard’s furnace and house. They paid Lucy for her silence. From then on she lived in the basement in the pink rooms with Miss Isabel who called her Mary (like her daughter).
What Junius didn’t know was that Miss Isabel had stopped taking her lithium and was giving it to Julie. That’s why Julie didn’t fight and was so confused about what had happened and who she was. She’d been given a regular does of lithium since the age of 10, but as she grew older her memory resurfaced and she wanted to leave. Junius discovered this in 1990 and left the door open so Julie could escape. She was supposed to meet up with him at his place, but she never showed, and although he searched for her, he couldn’t find her. Harris James covered up Julie’s disappearance a second time. After Julie ran away from Isabel, Isabel took all of her lithium pills at once and killed herself. Junius eventually found Julie at a recovery center for girls run by nuns (the same place Amelia went in 1990). They took care of Julie and then she worked there for awhile but she had HIV and eventually died. She was buried as Mary July in the convent graveyard.
Wayne goes home and Amelia’s ghost tells him what really happened. The student who loved Julie, Mike Ardoin, thought he’d marry Julie someday. Although Amelia tried consoling him he was inconsolable. Mike’s dad ran a landscaping business that included free work for the local convent. Then one day, the now adult Mike Ardoin runs into Julie at the convent and recognizes her. He marries her and they have a girl she names Lucy after her mother. The nuns did what they could to protect Julie–they made up a story that she had died. So Wayne gets the address for Ardoin Landscaping and goes to Mike Ardoin’s home. But when he gets there he forgets why he went there. He calls his son who tells him to ask someone where he is. And he asks the little girl Lucy’s mother, who is Julie Purcell all grown up and happy. The little girl is the same girl he ran into at the convent when they saw Mary July’s grave. And they met her father too who told them his dad started doing free landscaping for the convent years ago and he kept up the tradition.
Every week there’s been an “inside the show” after each episode. For episode 8, the show’s writer spent 15 seconds saying this final episode tied up all the loose ends. No, it really didn’t. It was like a story dump pasted into the last page of a novel after stringing you along with junk the first 400 pages. :0
4 out of 10 stars. This was a disappointing season. There wasn’t much to the actual story and the characters were really unlikable.