Review of "Fargo" on FX From The TV MegaSite

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Ted Danson and Patrick Wilson

"Fargo" review by Suzanne 10/12/15
Returns Monday October 12, 10/9c on FX

If you liked the first season of the show, you'll mostly likely enjoy the second season. It's just as good, with the same great writing and acting. Like the first season, there are bad guys (career criminals), good guys (the police) and those in-between, caught in the middle.  People have family problems, marital problems, mental illness, and more, making them very realistic characters. Yet there's always a touch of quirk or humor or just plain oddballness. It'll make you gasp and laugh in equal amounts. The dialogue is fabulous, too.

The first episode has a horrible murder in the small town of Luverne, which happens almost as an accident, in 1979. The crime is investigated by State Trooper Lou Solverson (played in the first season by Keith Carradine as the long-retired Lou Solverson, father of Molly) and his father-in-law Sheriff Hank Larsson (Ted Danson).

Most of the rest of the cast are mobsters. There's the Gerhardt Family of Fargo, headed by the mom, Floyd (Jean Smart). She has 3 sons -- Rye (Kieran Culkin), Dodd (Jeffrey Donovan), and Bear (Angus Sampson). Dodd thinks he should lead their mob. In the meantime, a rival crime organization from out of town wants to take them over.

Meanwhile, a young couple gets inadvertently caught up in everything that's going on. I can't tell you more without spoiling it!  Let's just say that the Vietnam war looms over many of the people in this show. I'm not sure that people back then really talked about it the way they do in this show, but then again, I was in high school in 1979, so I might not have been aware of it in the same way.

I will say that they do a pretty good job of the 70's hair and costumes, but the dialogue seems to throw in 70's political references occasionally in a kind of odd way that doesn't quite seem realistic for me. I was around back then, and people just didn't make random references to Pol Pot or Love Canal.  Not to mention, there was a really strange mention of John McCain. I never heard of him until he ran for president. I doubt most people had heard of him at that point.

Other than this little nitpick, though, it's really a good and entertaining show.  You should make sure to tune in because it's awesomely good.   Everyone you know should watch, and probably will. I watched four episodes, and I can't wait for the rest.

Watch for a strange sort of scifi-moment or two as well that will make you wonder what the heck is going on. There are some strange lights in the first episode. The second episode ends with a quote from H.G. Wells' "War of the Worlds", read by Richard Burton (from a musical adaptation in the 70's). What are they trying to tell us?


Video Clips:  Coming This Season OK Then Agree Cuckoo We hit 'em

Aw jeez, here we go again!  The all new “true crime” case in Fargo’s new chapter takes you back to 1979 in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and Luverne, Minnesota. “Lou Solverson” (Patrick Wilson), a young State Trooper recently back from Vietnam, investigates a case involving a local crime gang, a major mob syndicate and a small town beautician “Peggy Blumquist” (Kirsten Dunst) and her husband “Ed” (Jesse Plemons), the local butcher’s assistant. Helping Lou piece things together is his father-in-law, “Sheriff Hank Larsson” (Ted Danson). The investigation will lead them to a colorful cast of characters that includes “Karl Weathers” (Nick Offerman), the town lawyer of Luverne, Minnesota. A Korean War vet, Karl is a flowery drunk blessed with the gift of gab and the eloquence of a true con artist. Three-time Emmy winner Brad Garrett will play “Joe Bulo,” the front man for the northern expansion of a Kansas City crime syndicate. The new face of corporate crime, Joe’s bringing a Walmart mentality to small town America. His number two is “Mike Milligan” (Bokeem Woodbine). Part enforcer, part detective, Mike is always smiling – but the joke is usually on you. Bulo and his crew have their sights set on the Gerhardt crime family in Fargo, currently led by matriarch “Floyd Gerhardt” (Jean Smart). With her husband at death’s door, Floyd takes over the family business, frustrating her eldest son, “Dodd Gerhardt” (Jeffrey Donovan). An impatient hothead with a cruel streak to match his ambitions, Dodd can’t wait for both his parents to die so he can take over and expand their business from kingdom to empire. “Bear Gerhardt” (Angus Sampson) is the middle son, an intimidatingly large man who, although inarticulate, is the most decent of his clan. “Rye Gerhardt” (Kieran Culkin), the youngest of the Gerhardt clan, views himself as a big shot, but in reality he’s just a small dog who barks big.

Emmy Award winning Executive Producers Noah Hawley (showrunner/writer/director), Joel & Ethan Coen, Warren Littlefield and John Cameron all return for the second installment. Fargo is produced by MGM Television and FX Productions, with MGM Television serving as the lead studio.

Episode 1 / Production #201 - "Waiting for Dutch" (Airs October 12, 10:00 pm e/p) - In 1979, an unexpected turn of events at a diner disrupts the lives of the citizens in a small Minnesota town. Written by Noah Hawley; directed by Michael Uppendahl / Randall Einhorn.

Episode 2 / Production #202 - "Before The Law" (Airs October 19, 10:00 pm e/p) - The Gerhardts get a surprising offer, and two unlikely murderers do their best to clean up their mess. Written by Noah Hawley; directed by Noah Hawley.

Episode 3 / Production #203 - "The Myth of Sisyphus" (Airs October 26, 10:00 pm e/p) - The Gerhardts' search for Rye intensifies, Lou takes a trip to Fargo, and Peggy overhears a new theory about the Waffle Hut shooter. Written by Bob DeLaurentis; directed by Michael Uppendahl.

Episode 4 / Production #204 - "Fear and Trembling" (Airs November 2, 10:00 pm e/p) - Floyd responds to Kansas City's proposal, Hanzee takes a road trip, and Lou has a realization. Written by Steve Blackman; directed by Michael Uppendahl.

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