Did True Detective Borrow Details From This Episode of Unsolved Mysteries?

Slate's Culture Blog
Feb. 26 2014 4:40 PM

Did True Detective Borrow Details From This Episode of Unsolved Mysteries?

mcconaughey_mysteries
Is this a young Rust Cohle?

YouTube

Earlier today, the Daily Beast published an interview with True Detective director Cary Fukunaga. Discussing Matthew McConaughey’s brilliant performance on the HBO series, Fukunaga asked his interviewer, Marlow Stern, “Have you seen McConaughey in Unsolved Mysteries? Even back then, it’s a great performance! And he’s mowing the lawn.”

Mowing the lawn, you say? That sounds familiar. Fortunately, Vulture was able to dig up the pretty wonderful clip from the long-running show. But it raises more questions than it answers.

Advertisement

Note that this case from Unsolved Mysteries involves not only murder, but the sexual violation of children. Is it a coincidence that this segment features a woman named Dorothy Lang, while True Detective centers on the death of a Dora Lange? And what about that red truck, which looks an awful lot like the one that Rust Cohle drives? Spooky. (Interestingly, McConaughey himself talked about this early performance in another interview about True Detective.)

Or perhaps these connections between the two shows are not intentional allusions by Fukunaga and company, but just more proof that time is a flat circle, and that everything we’ve ever done or will do, we’re gonna do over and over and over again.

David Haglund is a senior editor at Slate. He runs Brow Beat, Slate's culture blog.

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

The Democrats’ War at Home

How can the president’s party defend itself from the president’s foreign policy blunders?

Secret Service Director Julia Pierson Resigns

Piper Kerman on Why She Dressed Like a Hitchcock Heroine for Her Prison Sentencing

Windows 8 Was So Bad That Microsoft Will Skip Straight to Windows 10

Homeland Is Good Again! For Now.

Politics

Cringing. Ducking. Mumbling.

How GOP candidates react whenever someone brings up reproductive rights or gay marriage.

Music

How Even an Old Hipster Can Age Gracefully

On their new albums, Leonard Cohen, Robert Plant, and Loudon Wainwright III show three ways.

The U.S. Has a New Problem in Syria: The Moderate Rebels Feel Like We’ve Betrayed Them

We Need to Talk: A Terrible Name for a Good Sports Show by and About Women

Trending News Channel
Oct. 1 2014 1:25 PM Japanese Cheerleader Robots Balance and Roll Around on Balls
  News & Politics
Crime
Oct. 1 2014 4:15 PM The Trials of White Boy Rick A Detroit crime legend, the FBI, and the ugliness of the war on drugs.
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 1 2014 2:16 PM Wall Street Tackles Chat Services, Shies Away From Diversity Issues 
  Life
The Eye
Oct. 1 2014 1:04 PM An Architectural Crusade Against the Tyranny of Straight Lines
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 1 2014 4:05 PM Today In GOP Outreach to Women: You Broads Like Wedding Dresses, Right?
  Slate Plus
Behind the Scenes
Oct. 1 2014 3:24 PM Revelry (and Business) at Mohonk Photos and highlights from Slate’s annual retreat.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 1 2014 3:02 PM The Best Show of the Summer Is Getting a Second Season
  Technology
Future Tense
Oct. 1 2014 3:01 PM Netizen Report: Hong Kong Protests Trigger Surveillance and Social Media Censorship
  Health & Science
Science
Oct. 1 2014 4:03 PM Does the Earth Really Have a “Hum”? Yes, but probably not the one you’re thinking.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 30 2014 5:54 PM Goodbye, Tough Guy It’s time for Michigan to fire its toughness-obsessed coach, Brady Hoke.