*Warning: Spoilers ahead.*
If you’re all caught up on True Detective, you’re still scratching your head as to who the killer could be. With so many suspects (The Purcells! Brett Woodard! That pedophile guy! The old farmer! The teenagers!) we feel like we’re grasping at straws. But one theory we couldn’t help but salivate over: Amelia Reardon (Carmen Ejogo) is Will’s murderer and Julie’s abductor.
Here’s why it makes sense. For one, Amelia’s past is murky. In 1980, at the bar, she tells Wayne (Mahershala Ali) she went out west and “was in the scene—San Francisco,” and got mixed up in some bad stuff before moving back, possibly around the time of the infamous Zebra murders that terrified the Bay Area. Maybe Amelia was somehow involved? She also says she pretended twice last year that she was someone else during two separate trips to St. Louis, meaning she has a little bit of a hidden agenda that should be a red flag to viewers.
Then, of course, we’ve just seen that sh*t has truly hit the fan in season three’s main love story between Wayne and Amelia Hays. But there’s something deeper, and knowing show creator Nic Pizzolatto’s storytelling style from seasons one and two, it’s not just drama for drama’s sake. It all stems from Amelia’s book about the case, and one redditor even posited that maybe this is what motivated Amelia to kill and kidnap the Purcell children.
Think about it: Amelia has always wanted to be an author. She could pen a bestselling novel describing details so close to the case only the killer would know, while also sleeping with, not to mention being married to, the main detective of the investigation in order to stay one step ahead. That also explains why, in episode three, Amelia is so intent on finding out more about Julie’s whereabouts from the cops. Not just to better her book, but also to make sure Julie doesn’t survive and live to incriminate Amelia.
Could this also be why 2015 Wayne is having flashbacks to Amelia and repressing details of the case? Maybe it’s not his dementia acting up, but rather his PTSD of finding out that his wife was in fact the killer all along. And what was with her ominous presence? She seemed to almost be teasing Wayne, telling him he “left something in the forest.”
She has a fondness for children, which could explain why there were games in the forest where Will went missing. Maybe she was playing with them and passing those little notes to Julie during class.
While past seasons of Pizzolatto’s show have been criticized for their narrow-minded treatment of female characters, Ejogo specifically said to E! News, “I feel like women are something that he’s really worked hard on making three-dimensional in this season, and my character is certainly no exception.”Certainly? Is that to say, she has deeper (perhaps, darker) layers than we’ve seen so far?
So, evil mastermind or frustrated sidekick? We’re counting the minutes ’til we find out.