• Network:
  • Series Premiere Date: Jan 12, 2014
  • Season #: 1
True Detective Image
Metascore
87

Universal acclaim - based on 41 Critics What's this?

User Score
9.2

Universal acclaim- based on 1108 Ratings

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  • Starring: Michael Potts, Michelle Monaghan, Woody Harrelson
  • Summary: A 17-year hunt for a serial killer in Louisiana begins with Detectives Rust Cohle (Matthew McConaughey) and Martin Hart (Woody Harrelson) joining the search in this eight-episode anthology series.
  • Genre(s): Drama, Action & Adventure, Suspense
  • Creator: Nic Pizzolatto
  • Show Type: Between Seasons
  • Season 1 premiere date: Jan 12, 2014
  • Episode Length: 60
  • Air Time: 09:00 PM
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 41
  2. Negative: 1 out of 41
  1. Reviewed by: Jeff Korbelik
    Mar 27, 2014
    100
    The drama is quite riveting.
  2. Reviewed by: Robert Lloyd
    Jan 10, 2014
    100
    True Detective runs slow and steady without ever seeming to drag. Even minor characters get room to breathe, and seem independently alive; the briefest scenes seem to imply life beyond the frame.... The dance [Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson] do together here is work of a very high order, and all the reason you need to watch.
  3. Reviewed by: Tim Goodman
    Jan 2, 2014
    100
    The acting--by Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson--is off the charts. The writing and the concept, by series creator and novelist Nic Pizzolatto, undulates from effectively brash soliloquies to penetratingly nuanced moments carried by sparse prose. Lastly, director Cary Joji Fukunaga has created a beautiful, sprawling sense of place (the series is shot and set in Louisiana).
  4. Reviewed by: Terri Schwartz
    Jan 13, 2014
    100
    True Detective proves to be everything the HBO marketing has promised it to be: a gorgeous, stylized and dark exploration into the worst parts of the human psyche.
  5. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    Jan 10, 2014
    90
    The crime they're investigating often takes such a back seat to the show's tricky structure and the all-pervasive angst you may once again wonder what exactly HBO has against the notion of narrative urgency. But be patient with this slow-burner of a disturbing, demanding drama. These detectives are truly fascinating.
  6. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    Jan 10, 2014
    80
    Happily, Harrelson and McConaughey play the characters well enough, and the script is crafted ingeniously enough, that we want to know where it all goes next--and don't focus on the likelihood it will be no place good.
  7. Reviewed by: Emily Nussbaum
    Mar 27, 2014
    30
    Whatever the length of the show’s much admired tracking shot (six minutes, uncut!), it feels less hardboiled than softheaded. Which might be O.K. if True Detective were dumb fun, but, good God, it’s not: it’s got so much gravitas it could run for President.

See all 41 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 21 out of 177
  1. Jan 13, 2014
    10
    Just another lover of "True Detective". Yes, it does remind me of several other detective/procedural series on TV but it is so much moreJust another lover of "True Detective". Yes, it does remind me of several other detective/procedural series on TV but it is so much more subtle, so much better acted. Harrelson and McConneghy are far from being among my favorite actors but on "True Detective", they simply show how it is done. Excellent! Expand
  2. Jan 26, 2014
    10
    The plot is good, but it's the acting that's worth the watch. There are truly fine performances in this miniseries.The pacing is part of theThe plot is good, but it's the acting that's worth the watch. There are truly fine performances in this miniseries.The pacing is part of the amazing stuff. It's atmosphere just works. I'm glad they came to the small screen for a bit and gave us this little gem. You can't watch it like a TV show, you've got to watch it like a movie in a theater. or at least understand that's what it films like. It;s brilliant! There have been perhaps other shows with similar themes but this one is leading much more so than following. It's smart, slick and with performers like these guys honoring us on the small screen? You can't get any better. Thank god and just in time too. I thought all was lost when "Breaking Bad" ended. To bad it's only a miniseries and one can only hope it ends with a big bang!

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  3. Mar 24, 2014
    10
    Quite simply, magnificent. HBO's latest phenomenon, True Detective, is the best new tv show around. It's debut season is sensational from theQuite simply, magnificent. HBO's latest phenomenon, True Detective, is the best new tv show around. It's debut season is sensational from the start to it's excellent end. It's a package that offers everything in it's entirety. It's dark, intelligent, intense, riveting, powerful, smart, suspenseful and unique. A truly tremendous piece of television. The premise immediately captures the imagination and lures you in, grips you and never lets go throughout. The series follows two Louisiana State Police homicide detectives (Matthew McConaughey & Woody Harrelson) and their hunt for a serial killer in Louisiana across the span of 17 years. McConaughey's recent renaissance hits almighty new heights here. His performance as Rustin 'Rust' Cole is masterful! An actor at the top of his game and it's evident in abundance. Harrelson is also in terrific form as Martin 'Marty' Hart. Infact, the pairs relationship is the heart of the first series and the chemistry the two have on screen in there for all to see. It's two stellar performances. Michelle Monaghan and Kevin Dunn also add to an already awesome series. True Detective is unmissable. It will have you hooked from the start! And whilst at times it can be slow burning, it all pays off and comes together in an unexpected climax. And to round it off, the shows theme tune is instantaneously a hit and you will be replaying it over again. I'll be astonished if you see a better series of television this year, the only shame is that McConaughey and co won't return for the much anticipated second season! Expand
  4. Feb 28, 2014
    10
    Breathtaking genius. A gripping story, amazing cast, and a journey into existential crisis. I'm blown away by the quality and pacing of thisBreathtaking genius. A gripping story, amazing cast, and a journey into existential crisis. I'm blown away by the quality and pacing of this show, it's the best TV show of at least the last five years. Expand
  5. Jan 25, 2014
    9
    This is what happens when writers are allowed to fulfill their vision. Finally, we get to watch a drama that hasn't been written to beThis is what happens when writers are allowed to fulfill their vision. Finally, we get to watch a drama that hasn't been written to be stretched out to 5 ridiculous seasons or to fill auditoriums with 13-year-olds. So far, it stands up there with the best dramas in any medium. Superb writing and Oscar level acting.

    Mike Hale of the New York Times called the dialogue "writerly." Read some of Mr. Hale's other tv reviews and you'll understand how ironic and cheap that shot is. Hale would have whined about Flannery O'Connor being "too obvious" because he's the kind of critic who won't let anyone forget he writes for the New York F***ing Times. He should write for Pitchfork. If average folk have already found it, it can't be good. He panned Breaking Bad, so that should tell you something.
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  6. Mar 15, 2014
    8
    One of the better shows this year. Really good acting and good story line. Perhaps a bit slow during the first three episodes, but after thatOne of the better shows this year. Really good acting and good story line. Perhaps a bit slow during the first three episodes, but after that it picks up great! Expand
  7. Aug 18, 2014
    0
    While McConaughey and Harrelson do the best they can with this awful script, they can't save this show all by themselves. I found this show soWhile McConaughey and Harrelson do the best they can with this awful script, they can't save this show all by themselves. I found this show so boring and pointless that I couldn't finish the series. The characters are are unlikable and not terribly interesting (Harrelson is basically an **** and McConaughey is just ridiculous), and the supporting characters are pretty much cardboard cutouts of supposedly real people. The women exist merely as props or bouncing **** and ass, and after a few episodes it was really hard to care what was going on. Don't bother with a second season, because I can't imagine anyone could possibly still be awake after watching the first season. Expand

See all 177 User Reviews

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