If there’s one thing the teasers for the long-anticipated second season of True Detective have told you, it’s this:


Sure, True Detective has never been an open book. The teasers for season one didn’t exactly scream ‘occult murders, the Yellow King is nigh!” either.

But aside from shots of characters who’ve forgotten how to smile and Colin Ferrell’s mustache from every angle, HBO’s summer blockbuster is keeping its details pretty hush-hush before the premiere on June 21st.

Which is pretty soon.

So I did a little research and found what one can find out about the upcoming season (which was a bit of a detective job in itself).

Whether you’re going to be in need of a replacement for Game of Thrones and/or Silicon Valley, or just can’t wait to see what the hell is going to happen this time, it’s about time we get prepared for Round 2.

With that said, here’s the main things we do know going into the new season of True Detective.

8. Who Are The People Brooding In The Trailer?


A stare is worth a thousand words (youtube, HBO)

While we had two buddy (kinda) cops last season, this season features four main players – three law enforcement officials brought together from different states to solve a murder, and a criminal leader.

Sheriff Ani Bezzerides (Rachel McAdams): A determined cop who doesn’t care what people think and continues an investigation after her superiors brush it off (we can all safely assume it’s the missing girl she talks about in the teasers). But her dark past has also driven her to the bottle and gambling.

Detective Ray Velcoro (Colin Ferrell, aka mustached Brad Pitt quasi-doppelganger): Velcoro is a cynical, disgraced cop with a criminal connection by day and an angry coke addict by night. Despite that, he’s ultimately a good man at heart who’s made bad choices and is now stuck between the mob and corrupt bosses.

Frank Semyon (Vince Vaughn): A criminal dabbling in the (legit) entrepreneurial world whose business is threatened.

Paul Woodrugh (Taylor Kitsch): A war veteran and motorcycle patrol cop wrapped up in a controversy involving sexually exploiting a female suspect that, supposedly, never happened.

7. It Might Involve The Occult


From season 1…if you don’t know that, go watch it right now (bizarrocentral, HBO)

A few months ago, the tagline “Bad men, hard women, and the secret occult history of the US transportation system” was released for the show. But in a recent interview with Medium, show creator Nic Pizzolatto said, “there’s nothing occult in this season” and that the rumor stems from an early outline of the show’s script.

But then just this week, a promising plot summary that had a heavy focus on occult-y type things was leaked.

Not to mention, multiple sources say the victim that kicks off this whole investigation is carved with occult markings.

Your move, Pizzolatto.

6. It Also Might Have Satanic Sex Societies 


No idea what’s going on in this scene…but it has a fancy party sex vibe, am I wrong? (youtube, HBO)

After the occult intel debacle, I’m taking plot details with a grain of salt. But supposedly, there’s an Eyes Wide Shut inspired masked orgy scene and a satanic underground sex society that the now missing girl was wrapped up in. Both are likely true when you consider the show hired a bunch of porn stars.

Let’s hope they are, purely for the sake of good storytelling.

5. Something Old, Something New


I like to pretend this is the showrunner keeping the plot secret from us all (youtube, HBO).

It’s obvious that as an anthology series, the second installment is going to be apples to the first season’s oranges. Farrell already said that it’s very different aesthetically – taking place in California and tying in Hollywood and the celebrity world rather than bayous and swamps.

But it’s also different behind the camera, with S1 director Cary Fukunaga leaving the helm to make way for a rotating crew of directors. Considering there’s double the main characters, some varying creative vision could be a good thing – but will it have the same atmospheric quality Fukunaga spun?

They’re also ditching the non-linear, time-jumping storytelling – so time is no longer a flat circle.

However, Farrell says that the characters struggle with the same existential issues of meaning, dark pasts vs present, what makes a person good, etc.

4. Stronger Character Focus 


If this shot isn’t in the cool opening credits, then I don’t know what will be (youtube, HBO).

While season one was all about the Yellow King, S2 is going to dig deeper into the characters and the aforementioned struggle of being a good person with a dark past. Pizzolatto notes, “I think there’s a disconcerting psychology to this world, and its characters have other kinds of uncanny reality with which to contend.”

3. A Tagline 

Season 2 looks even broodier than the first. The tagline – which has changed about three billion times – is described by Pizzolatto as: “3 police officers and a career criminal who investigate a web of conspiracy in the aftermath of a murder.”

If that’s not heavy enough for you, check out the first two episode titles: “The Western Book of the Dead” and “Night Finds You.”

2. Badass Chicks


Rachel McAdams is a badass sheriff. Nice. (youtube, HBO).

After taking some heat for the lack of female main players last season, this season is featuring a bunch of strong lady characters. Hell yeah.

1. Male Victim

And speaking of gender-switching, unlike last season starting with a murdered girl, Season 2 kicks off with the death of Ben Caspar (Frank Semyon’s business partner). The corrupt manager of a fictional California city, he apparently dies a bizarre death the day before a potential highway deal that would permanently change traffic patterns in Cali. Which is obviously a huge deal in LA.

And that’s everything you need to know before June 21st – or everything we do know before we have to start putting the pieces together every week.

Welcome back, True Detective.