True Detective: The Western Book of the Dead

truedetective_title

FADE IN:

INT. RO SEQUENCE

A GLOOMY LEONARD COHEN TRACK accompanies some DOUBLE EXPOSURE PHOTOGRAPHY of the LEAD ACTORS and a set of INDUSTRIAL CALIFORNIA BACKDROPS. Everyone immediately ANALYZES BOTH THE SONG AND THE FOOTAGE for CLUES. MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY and WOODY HARRELSON are listed in the CREDITS as EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS and PERMANENT REMINDERS OF HOW AWESOME THE FIRST SEASON WAS.

WOODY HARRELSON
Yeah, good luck with this season! I’m sure the first one wasn’t a lucky one-off or anything!

MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY
I don’t know why you’re even bothering! Then again, why does anyone bother with anything? We are, after all, creatures that should not exist by natural law. Consciousness is a joke played out on a cosmic scale.

WOODY HARRELSON
Wasn’t all that nihilistic banter great? Well, it’s GONE now.

EXT. SCHOOL

TRUE DETECTIVE COLIN FARRELL is sitting in his CAR alongside his SON, TREVOR LARCOM.

COLIN FARRELL
Okay, dark and grim. Grimdark. I am a broken man and everything sucks. Goddamn, crap.

TREVOR LARCOM
Dad, if you’re trying to help me deal with being bullied at school, this isn’t really doing the trick.

COLIN FARRELL
Oh sorry. Uhh, good luck, slugger! Keep your chin up!

TREVOR LARCOM
Which one?

COLIN FARRELL
Now son.

When TREVOR gets out of the CAR, COLIN does his SAD EYEBROWS THING so hard that they almost FOLD BACK ON THEMSELVES.

INT. MOLLY HAGAN’S OFFICE

Later that day, COLIN is talking to DIVORCE ATTORNEY MOLLY HAGAN.

MOLLY HAGAN
This scene perfectly excuses the amount of backstory we need to dump on viewers, so take it away, Colin.

COLIN FARRELL
Yeah, my wife? She was raped nine months before Trevor was born.

MOLLY HAGAN
Whoa there, your wife hasn’t even been introduced yet and she’s already been raped? And an immediate questioning of parentage to boot. Are we looking to outdo Game of Thrones here?

COLIN FARRELL
Trevor is my son, I don’t care what the DNA test I refuse to take says. I want more visitation rights.

MOLLY HAGAN
How is your relationship with your son?

COLIN FARRELL
We’re totally cool! Look, we leave each other heartfelt messages on these digital recorders, which isn’t weird at all.

MOLLY HAGAN
Oh, that’ll work great as a confessional plot device somewhere down the road.

COLIN FARRELL
Yeah, that’s what I was thinking. Anyways, let’s cut to the chase. Here’s a giant wad of cash. Make my problems go away already.

MOLLY HAGAN
Bribery? This bodes well for when I’ll have to paint you as an upstanding citizen.

COLIN FARRELL
I welcome judgment, although here’s a flashback that illustrates why I really shouldn’t.

truedetective_westernbook_grim

Go on, judge me. But be warned: my mustache and my American accent are off limits!

INT. BAR

SEVERAL YEARS EARLIER, COLIN walks into a BAR and meets with VINCE VAUGHN of all people.

VINCE VAUGHN
Ah, good thing you ditched that ridiculous mustache. That’ll inform everyone that this is a flashback and make them wonder whether we’ll be bouncing across different time periods again.

COLIN FARRELL
Vince Fucking Vaughn? If you’re trying to redirect your career in the footsteps of Matthew McConaughey, it might be a little too late for that, buddy.

VINCE VAUGHN
Hey, I can play a convincing bad guy. Have you ever seen Domestic Disturbance?

COLIN FARRELL
That John Travolta movie? I think I speak for everyone when I say no.

VINCE VAUGHN
Anyways, as per your request, I found the man who assaulted your wife so you can take care of him. Nothing like a little street justice!

COLIN FARRELL
So I suppose I’m now indebted to a career criminal?

VINCE VAUGHN
Actually, I’m going to put a pin in that. I may call on you in the future, I may not.

COLIN FARRELL
Good thing I’m such a fan of crippling uncertainty.

INT. VINCE VAUGHN’S HOUSE

Back in the PRESENT DAY, VINCE VAUGHN is standing in front of a MIRROR checking out his ACTING RANGE. KELLY REILLY walks in.

KELLY REILLY
If it isn’t my freakishly tall husband! How does it feel now that you’re going straight, like this season of True Detective is apparently trying to do?

VINCE VAUGHN
I was trying to bring across inner conflict with my mugging in front of the mirror just now.

KELLY REILLY
Well, don’t worry if you still have to dip your toes in the life you’re trying to leave behind, Vince. I’m the type of wife who’s completely supportive of her husband’s wrongdoings.

VINCE VAUGHN
More Robin Wright than Anna Gunn, got it.

INT. VINCE VAUGHN’S CASINO

VINCE and KELLY meet with VINCE’S ASSISTANT, CHRISTOPHER JAMES BAKER.

VINCE VAUGHN
I look forward to this lucrative railway project in collaboration with Russian businessman Timothy V. Murphy and the city manager.

CHRISTOPHER JAMES BAKER
Are we just laying out the story arcs plain and simple? I guess that makes things a lot more straightforward.

VINCE VAUGHN
Ah, it seems my fetish for redheads extends to my personal assistant as well.

CHRISTOPHER JAMES BAKER
Timothy’s arriving at the airport today. Did you want me to go welcome him personally?

VINCE VAUGHN
No, that’ll make us seem too eager. Never do anything out of hunger, not even eating.

CHRISTOPHER JAMES BAKER
Dude, what? Did you crib that from the Big Book of Depressing Aphorisms or something?

KELLY REILLY
Yeah, that might’ve sounded deep coming from Matthew McConaughey, but you just make it come across as utterly ridiculous.

VINCE VAUGHN
Will everyone please stop with the comparisons to the first season of True Detective? Oh who am I kidding, that’s never gonna happen.

truedetective_westernbook_hunger

“If you could compare it to Fred Claus or Delivery Man, I really think I’d come off a lot stronger in comparison.”

CHRISTOPHER pulls out a NEWSPAPER.

CHRISTOPHER JAMES BAKER
We may have a problem. A reporter just published the first of an eight-part series on corruption here in Vinci.

VINCE VAUGHN
Vinci? What the fuck is that?

CHRISTOPHER JAMES BAKER
It’s what we’re calling the actual corrupt business community Nic Pizzolatto based the story on.

VINCE VAUGHN
Oh okay. Get Colin Farrell to rough up that reporter, that should take care of everything.

CHRISTOPHER JAMES BAKER
Won’t that lend credence to his article?

VINCE VAUGHN
Hmm, good point. Do it anyway.

INT. RACHEL MCADAMS’ APARTMENT

TRUE DETECTIVE RACHEL MCADAMS is getting DRESSED while thinking about KNIVES. RILEY SMITH walks in.

RILEY SMITH
Hey, so, uhh, about that hardcore sex act you just initiated without any, hmm, preamble. I just wanted to, ahh, say I wasn’t prepared for, umm, err.

RACHEL MCADAMS
What’s going on here? I know the first season of True Detective caught some flak for its lack of empowered female characters, but introducing me entirely via implied unorthodox sexual behaviour is not the right kind of compensation!

RILEY SMITH
Can’t we just talk about our, ehh, relationship? I mean, uhm, if you’ve got, like, a minute, yeah.

RACHEL MCADAMS
And now we’re weakening the men around me to make me seem even tougher? We’re on a fucking roll here!

RILEY SMITH
(pouts)

RACHEL MCADAMS
Pack your shit and get the fuck out.

INT. SEX HOUSE

RACHEL takes part in a RAID on a SUSPECTED BROTHEL, but it turns out it’s a TOTALLY LEGIT WEBCAM OPERATION. She confers with her PARTNER, MICHAEL IRBY.

MICHAEL IRBY
All these girls are American and the proprietor even has a business license.

RACHEL MCADAMS
Fuck, that’s totally something we could have checked before busting in there with guns drawn! Damn this overpowering need to appear tough!

MICHAEL IRBY
So why do you suppose we’re here at all? We seem to be all over the place with these plotlines.

LEVEN RAMBIN, who is one of the CAMGIRLS, walks up to RACHEL.

LEVEN RAMBIN
Hello, SISTER!

MICHAEL IRBY
Ah, there we go.

RACHEL MCADAMS
Leven, what the fuck do you think you’re doing here? This isn’t healthy!

LEVEN RAMBIN
That’s rich, coming from you! Riley Smith is still cowering in a corner because of whatever deviant sex kink you sprung on him, but I can’t masturbate in front of a camera?

RACHEL MCADAMS
That’s my point! You’re another woman introduced solely by her sexual proclivities!

LEVEN RAMBIN
Right, then you’re not going to like this next scene.

truedetective_westernbook_cam

“I never should have lowered myself to doing television.”

EXT. CALIFORNIA HIGHWAY

TRUE DETECTIVE TAYLOR KITSCH — no wait, JUST PATROL OFFICER TAYLOR KITSCH has pulled over ASHLEY HINSHAW for RECKLESS DRIVING.

ASHLEY HINSHAW
What seems to be the officer, problem?

TAYLOR KITSCH
First off, I apologise for uttering all my lines in a grim, haunted tone and making it seem like I fucking hate my job. Now, license and registration, please.

ASHLEY HINSHAW
I, uhh, I actually don’t have my license on me, but it’s at my house, which is just a mile up the road.

TAYLOR KITSCH
Driver licenses don’t work that way, ma’am, You can’t keep it within a certain radius of you and expect that to suffice.

ASHLEY HINSHAW
Maybe we can go get it together? Hint hint, wink wink, nudge nudge. I’m offering sexual favours, is what I’m getting at.

Before he can decide what to do, ASHLEY runs to the TABLOIDS and claims TAYLOR ACCEPTED A BLOWJOB. He is IMMEDIATELY SUSPENDED pending an INVESTIGATION.

TAYLOR KITSCH
What just happened?

INT. CITY MANAGER’S HOUSE

COLIN FARRELL and his PARTNER, W. EARL BROWN, enter the house of THAT CITY MANAGER VINCE was on about.

W. EARL BROWN
The city manager hasn’t been seen in a couple of days. We’ll probably find him snoozing in his backyard, I’m sure.

COLIN FARRELL
No such luck, the place has been ransacked. Also, this doesn’t look like a house as much as it looks like an above-ground sex dungeon.

W. EARL BROWN
At least now a man’s being characterised by way of his sexual preferences. Score one for equality I guess.

COLIN FARRELL
Hey look, in addition to naked imagery everywhere, he’s got a skeleton wearing a crown in the corner.

W. EARL BROWN
Great. When we find him, we can bring him in on several counts of symbolism.

TRUE DETECTIVE: The Western Book of the Dead

“I didn’t realize we had Nicole Richie on this season.”

An INSERT shows the CITY MANAGER, who looks like a GAUNT JACK NICHOLSON, being loaded into a CAR. The DRIVER has a BIG RAVEN COSTUME HEAD in the PASSENGER SEAT OH MY GOD WHAT COULD IT MEEEEEAN?

INT. VINCE VAUGHN’S CASINO

VINCE is giving a SPEECH to ALL THE SHADY PEOPLE INVOLVED IN HIS RAILWAY DEAL. KELLY REILLY is in the AUDIENCE checking out her ACTING RANGE.

VINCE VAUGHN
As you all know, next year we start work on the construction of a railway up Central California to the tune of 68 billion dollars. Isn’t that an exciting proposition? Much better than the inescapable dread of Lovecraftian mythology, right?

TIMOTHY V. MURPHY approaches VINCE.

VINCE VAUGHN
Timothy, how are you? Still enjoying your tiny giraffe?

TIMOTHY V. MURPHY
Opulence, I has it. Vince, I vish to tell you dat I am no longer sure I vant to be part of deal.

VINCE VAUGHN
What? Okay, I realise it’s hilariously insincere of me to go legitimate with a business deal that involves corrupt politicians and the Russian mob, but you can’t back out of this now!

TIMOTHY V. MURPHY
I am sorry, Vince, but I haf you under my fumb and I vould like to vatch you squirm while I pretend to fink it over. Also, please excuse dis ridiculous accent. I am really Irish, you see.

EXT. PANTICAPAEUM RETREAT

RACHEL MCADAMS and MICHAEL IRBY visit a NEW AGE SPIRITUAL RETREAT, which looks exactly like the one where JON HAMM HAD HIS EPIPHANY AT THE END OF MAD MEN.

MICHAEL IRBY
What are we doing here, Rachel? Is this an actual case or is it another family affair?

RACHEL MCADAMS
Actually, it’s both. I’m investigating a missing girl case and she used to work here.

MICHAEL IRBY
Sure, another plotline to add to the pile. And the family connection?

DAVID MORSE, who is an AGING HIPPIE, walks up to RACHEL.

DAVID MORSE
Hello, DAUGHTER!

MICHAEL IRBY
Right, I’ll be in the car.
(leaves)

RACHEL MCADAMS
Dad, are you aware that Leven is doing online porn?

DAVID MORSE
What is porn, really? At least she’s expressing herself creatively while you’re just a tool for the Man. I know your mother walking out on us is partly to blame for that.

RACHEL MCADAMS
Hold up, did we just cover our entire father-daughter relationship in our first scene together? Why is all the character exposition being plainly front-loaded like this? We could also, hear me out here, allow these things to become apparent through our actions instead of just spelling it out?

DAVID MORSE
Hey, at least my character being a spiritual guide sort of excuses the fact that I’m explicitly stating what’s going on in everybody’s heads.

truedetective_westernbook_flighty

“I was also Russell Crowe’s stunt double in ‘Noah.'”

RACHEL MCADAMS
Just talk to your daughter, alright?

DAVID MORSE
I just did.

RACHEL MCADAMS
I MEAN YOUR OTHER DAUGHTER!

RACHEL and MICHAEL drive off. For a moment it seems like they’ll be having a PHILOSOPHICAL HEART-TO-HEART IN THE CAR, but then the SCENE ENDS.

EXT. SCHOOL

As TREVOR LARCOM is being picked up by HIS STEPFATHER, CHRISTIAN CAMPBELL, COLIN walks up to them. He is PHENOMENALLY WASTED.

CHRISTIAN CAMPBELL
Colin, are you drunk?

COLIN FARRELL
Maybe YOU’RE drunk, you Rob McElhenney-looking motherfucker!

CHRISTIAN CAMPBELL
Well yes, technically I am fucking Trevor’s mother.

COLIN FARRELL
Shut up! Trevor, why aren’t you wearing those new shoes I got you?

TREVOR LARCOM
I, uhh —

COLIN FARRELL
You piece of shit! Did someone steal them? Did someone SHIT IN THEM? You tell me right now!
(shakes Trevor around)

TREVOR LARCOM
Dad, you’re responding to my being bullied by bullying me some more! Don’t you know that violence only begets violence?

COLIN FARRELL
I’ll leave an apologetic message on your digital recorder later, but right now you’re gonna tell me what happened!

CHRISTIAN CAMPBELL
Colin, back off! Some kid stole his shoes out of his locker and cut them up.

COLIN FARRELL
What? Seriously, there’s no way in fuck I could have ever spawned such a little bitch. Any son of mine would have responded to that like a FUCKING LEGEND!

CHRISTIAN takes TREVOR home. COLIN decides to go BEAT UP THE BULLY’S FATHER IN FRONT OF HIM.

COLIN FARRELL
Fuck yeah, violence.

INT. TAYLOR KITSCH’S APARTMENT

TAYLOR KITSCH enters his APARTMENT and finds his GIRLFRIEND, ADRIA ARJONA, lying suggestively on the BED.

TAYLOR KITSCH
Whoa whoa, she’s not my girlfriend! When did we start to label this, jeez.

ADRIA ARJONA
Whatever, I’m a highly sexual woman, so get over here and fuck me until I can’t see straight!

TAYLOR KITSCH
Another woman defined by her sexuality, wonderful. I’m just gonna hop in the shower first.

TAYLOR retreats to the BATHROOM, where he surreptitiously pops a VIAGRA.

TAYLOR KITSCH
And now we wait for my dick to get hard. Yep. Just gonna sit here and work up a boner. That’s what you’re watching right now. Taylor Kitsch sitting on a toilet and willing himself an erection. Acting, bitches.

When he’s GOOD AND READY, TAYLOR goes back to ADRIA, who initiates a BLOWJOB. TAYLOR makes a FACE like he’s remembering JOHN CARTER.

truedetective_westernbook_orbattleship

Or maybe X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

INT. BAR

COLIN FARRELL and VINCE VAUGHN are sitting in THE MOST DEPRESSING BAR IN HISTORY, which is mostly due to LERA LYNN SINGING IN THE CORNER.

LERA LYNN
Thank you, that was “My Least Favorite Life,” also known as the song that should’ve been the opening title track.

VINCE VAUGHN
Colin, we’ve been moodily staring at each other and making trailer faces for about an hour. Want to tell me how it went with that reporter?

COLIN FARRELL
I kicked the shit out of him and stole all his files. The story’s buried.

VINCE VAUGHN
Awesome, here’s your blood money. So, how’s your son? Does his gorgeous red hair still catch the sun like a fiery mane?

COLIN FARRELL
That useless little — I mean, he’s fine. We’re fine.
(guzzles scotch)

VINCE VAUGHN
You ought to find yourself a good woman and make more kids, Colin.

COLIN FARRELL
Hah, apparently it’s not just women who badger each other about starting families!

VINCE VAUGHN
Kelly and I have actually been trying for a while. We’re thinking about IVF now.

COLIN FARRELL
Waaait a minute, my wife and I were trying for a long while too before Trevor was born.

VINCE VAUGHN
What are you driving at?

COLIN FARRELL
We both seemingly can’t conceive, Taylor can’t even get it up, Rachel’s father is a passive ass. Oh, and I did beat up a father in front of his son! Vince, I think emasculation is going to be a running theme.

VINCE VAUGHN
Yeesh, that probably means the men in this season will be acting out in all sorts of ways to prove their manhood. Anyways, I’m off. Take care, Colin. Or continue getting hammered, that’s fine too.

EXT. CALIFORNIA HIGHWAY

TAYLOR is speeding his MOTORCYCLE down a DARK HIGHWAY. He keeps going FASTER AND FASTER and tries to communicate SUICIDAL TENDENCIES with his FACE.

TAYLOR KITSCH
CUT MY LIFE INTO PIECES! THIS IS MY LAST RESORT!

He CHICKENS OUT and slows down to a STOP. In doing so, he comes across the BODY OF THE CITY MANAGER sat up on a BENCH with his EYES BURNED OUT and his DICK MISSING.

TAYLOR KITSCH
Looks like we’re not being subtle about that emasculation theme anymore.

TAYLOR CALLS IT IN, which brings COLIN and RACHEL to the CRIME SCENE.

COLIN FARRELL
I was slumped over in a bar when I got the call, but I railed a line of coke on my way over, so I’m fired up and ready to go.

RACHEL MCADAMS
And I just got thrown out of a casino for drunk and disorderly behaviour, but I’m good too. Yes, I have a gambling problem. Am I the most compelling character or what?

COLIN FARRELL
So this is it? The story can actually start? We are the two soul-sick detectives who’ll throw themselves on a high-profile murder case and learn to appreciate each other along the way?

RACHEL MCADAMS
Looks like it.

TAYLOR KITSCH
What about me?

COLIN FARRELL
It appears you’ve stumblefucked your way into this investigation, so welcome aboard.

They spend a while GRIMLY STARING AT EACH OTHER.

FADE OUT

TV Show: True Detective

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