Sepinwall said:Saw, and enjoyed, the Fargo s2 premiere today. A very promising start.
Goodman said:An absolutely trippy, bloody and funny first episode of #Fargo S2. Just got back from the screening. Cant wait to rewatch. Plus more eps.
Brian Gianelli said:Loved the #Fargo S2 premiere. Took me awhile to recognize Jean Smart, but finally figured it out. #TCA15
Gwen Reyes said:Guys. I just watched the S2 premiere of #Fargo and it is soooo good. Like, why are we even talking about #TrueDetective anymore? #tca15
Jason Lynch said:Very happy/relieved to report that #Fargo S2 is off to a rousing start in its first episode, which I saw today.
Screening #Fargos superb S2 premiere for critics in the midst of True Detectives implosion was a brilliant move by FX.
Is True Detective S2 that bad?
Its a complete reinvention, said Hawley during yesterdays TCA panel where the cast and crew previewed the second season, which takes place in 1979. Its a completely new story. It evokes the things you remember from the movie and at the end of the first year. He described the second season as bigger but still in tune with the Fargo name.
When I first went in to meet with everyone at FX, I said Why is this movie called Fargo? It takes place in Minnesota But now its evocative of a story, a true crime story that isnt true, where truth is stranger than fiction, said Hawley before elaborating on the series structure. This has to be the way you tell the story: you meet the criminals before the crime is committed its not a whodunit, theres no mystery and you dont meet law enforcement until the crime is committed.
Then theres a certain moral spectrum that youre on, where to use the movie as an example you usually have a character who is basically a very purely good person and on the opposite pole, theres usually some element of monstrosity, Hawley continued. Then I think in the middle theres usually some characters who could go one way or the other. And thats the interesting moral dynamic.
This year, Kirsten Dunst and Jesse Plemons characters pretty much exist in that middle ground, the same area where Martin Freemans character hovered over Hawleys Season 1 and William H. Macys lived in the movie version. The fun lies in seeing which side they all shake out to by the end, Hawley said.
If there's one cast member who can pull off his '70s wardrobe with style, it's Patrick Wilson And Hawley knows it
"He's the only man who can wear a maroon uniform for 10 hours and you think, 'He's just so handsome,'" Hawley says with a laugh.
As for that super thick Midwestern accent, the cast couldn't wait to take on the challenge.
"The dialect was definitely intimidating," Plemons says. "But luckily we had a great dialect coach and it's all already in the writing. So you get a really good sense of who these people are just reading the scripts."
"The words are great," Danson agrees. "If you have a dialect that is purposeful, you try it on, and it just takes you someplace. I would have had no idea where my character is going, and I didn't have to worry about it. The words were so good, I could just follow the path that Noah had written. There's an earnestness to it. It really was like following the dance steps that had been set up by Noah."
Started watching this yesterday. LOVED episode 1. And the accent, oh man!
I am so hyped for this. S1 was just better than it had any rational right to be.
More via the link.On joining the show:
I can think of maybe a handful of times that youre in a show that has the commercial success, the critical success, the support from the studio. And its backed up by good talent, You dont feel like, Well, were kind of a crappy show but a lot of people watch us. I really felt like Noah Hawley, who is our showrunner and creator luckily he had a great team of writers that helped him out so he did not shoulder the entire load for 10 episodes but his vision of this show and the way that he can map out this entire epic and it really is epic this season.
On how season 2 is similar to and different from season 1:
The way of storytelling is similar. [Noah] hits the tone in that sense maybe its similar to season 1. I think its a much different thing when you set it in 1979, so you can go back and see everything that sticks out in the late 70s and the fabric of Reagan coming into power and the oil crisis and guys back from Vietnam. And you can take those and they really inform our character. Whereas I dont think they had that luxury with season 1, because it was set just a few years ago. I love season 1. Its a much, much different feel in that it becomes a time capsule of what the country and the world was going through in 79.
On if he tried to mimic Keith Carradines speech and mannerisms:
Not a ton, to be honest with you. And that was a conversation. And I love that kind of stuff, and for Conjuring I listen to Ed Warren tapes, and I love the nerdy actor things I was very specific with Noah in that, How much do you want? When does the limp come into play? And I wont give that away. But you also know that theres a big life between 79 and  when the first season was set. So theres a lot of life in there. Im not gong to have the same speech pattern. Nor would a 30-year-old Lou versus a 60-year-old Lou.
There are a few things. I remember one scene specifically where Im going trough it like the way he sits on a chair with a shotgun. Those kinds of things that I kind of nerd out with and go and freeze frame. Something like the way a man sits, yeah, he may sit the same way for a long time And the way he crosses his legs and the way he holds a gun that I was very specific with. But the speech patterns and even some of the dialect, Noah said, this is a different Lou, its okay. Theres a freedom that we had because hes at a much different place in his life.
While filming the first season of FXs Fargo in Calgary in 2013, it was so colda reported negative-35 degrees with wind chillthat stars Billy Bob Thornton and Martin Freeman risked frostbite if their skin was exposed for more than 10 minutes. Production was canceled several nights when even the Canadians deemed the arctic temperatures unbearable. Thornton joked that conditions were so extreme he started sympathizing with the Donner party.
About a year later, filming again in Calgary, Fargo executive producer Warren Littlefield estimates that temperatures were often nearly 70 degrees warmer when wind chill was taken into consideration. Many days, he recalls, did not even fall to the freezing point. It was a nightmare for a television series named for a city synonymous with dread-inducing whiteout landscapes.
We were sending trucks into the mountains to load them up with snow and bring them down to our locations, Littlefield tells VF.com of the second-season shoot. Theyd bring back these huge blocks of snow and then we had kind of a wood chipper that worked through these blocks of snow and ice and then just spit it out into a spray. Its wildly effective if the temperature drops later in the day so you dont lose all the snow that you trucked in. . . . We would have a huddle of producers, director, A.D.s, and somehow everyone had different weather apps and everyone had a different kind of sense of what was going to happen.
When weather-dependent productions do stray outside of California and its sound stages, and find themselves atmospherically screwed, they seem to be increasingly relying on expensive means to create their own weather. In addition to trucking in snow from the mountains, the Fargo team also made snow from scratch using machines. But, Littlefield says, running the rented equipment night and day over the course of a weekend cost about $100,000.
Thats a lot of money for something that you didnt have to pay for the year before, he says.
There was also competition for the snow guns with the Revenant crew, which was also filming in Calgary at the time. There was one point when we needed to get back snowmaking equipment but Revenant had tied it up for the rest of the winter, so it wasnt even available to us, Littlefield says.
1) Don't worry, "Fargo" fans. We're 3/4th of the way through the second season of "True Detective," but it was a muddled, murky disappointment from the vary earliest moments. Anything could happen as "Fargo" progresses through its season, but the first episode back is a confident continuation of the show's Emmy-winning form. It sounds like "Fargo" and it moves like "Fargo" and the characters speak with a voice that's surprisingly unique given that it's Noah Hawley transposing the voice of the first season, which was already a transposition of the voice of a Coen Brothers classic, onto a new decade. Watching the pilot of the first season was uncanny, because it was The Coen Brothers' "Fargo," but it wasn't. Then Hawley went on to do it for 10 episodes. Watching the second season premiere isn't the same sensation. It's reassuring. The first premiere was, "Whoa. Can he do this?" The second premiere is, "Whew. He did it again."
2) But it isn't Season 1. As Huey Lewis and the News once sang, we've gotta get back in time. The first season was, of course, a period piece in its own way, but not quite as demonstrably, since 2006 is different, but you don't trip over the differences. Season 2 goes back to 1979 and the production designers are positively giddy with the period details, from the cars to the costumes to the facial hair. But it's also paying stylistic homage to the movies of the period, with periodic split-screens and a gritty, roughed up cinematography that instantly sets Season 2 apart. The premiere is full of visual cues that harken back to Season 1 and to the film, but that have been filtered through this new aesthetic. The same is true of the score. It's just so much fun.
3) The "Fargo" casting department is second to none. OK, maybe they're second to "Orange Is The New Black." I put "OITNB" in its own category because of how much of its remarkable cast was unknown before the show premiered. "Fargo" casts stars, or people who are stars to TV fans, and it's amazing how instantly these people all fit into the Noah Hawley/"Fargo" universe. It's a stylized world and requires a stylized form of acting and it's impressive how nobody stands out as discordant within that world. Figuring out the true standouts will take a few episodes, but Patrick Wilson, Ted Danson, Kirsten Dunst, Jesse Plemons, Jean Smart, Jeffrey Donovan, Nick Offerman, Cristin Milioti and more just take their places and creative performative continuity with the first season. Like everything else, they look right and sound right. [I'm not going to abandon my mental image of Joel Kinnaman as Lou Solverson, but my objections to Patrick Wilson are nil.]
4) Don't miss a second. The first scene of the premiere is a funny, meta treat and I assume it will ripple throughout the season. It's not the inciting event for what's to come, though that sequence is also a comedic nightmare. "Fargo" is a show about the violent intersection between people, both driven by fate and by decisions, and Season 2 looks like it could raise the ante on the first season on violent intersections.
The first season had no business being as great as it was, given the singular nature of the original "Fargo" film. But somehow, Noah Hawley managed to stay true to the Coen brothers' spirit without seeming like a bad impersonator. The premiere of season 2 a period piece about young Lou Solverson (Patrick Wilson) investigating a series of crimes in 1979 is terrific, and features a host of actors (Ted Danson, Jean Smart, Jeffrey Donovan, Kirsten Dunst, and Jesse Plemons, among many others) who fit instantly into this Coen-esque universe.
The story Lester tells to get his brother arrested makes no sense even at the most basic level. He tells a story that contradicts forensic evidence of how the police officer was shot. All anyone would have had to do was look at the crime scene notes and Lester's story falls apart. He isn't very bright. I kept thinking this would happen but it never did, so they get some taped confession that didn't exist until the final episode.