All the Burning Questions Following the Season 3 Finale of ‘True Detective’

The season three finale of True Detective aired earlier this week on HBO, and while we finally know whodunit, that doesn’t mean we don’t have questions. Here’s what’s still bugging us after Sunday night’s grand finale, and our thoughts on why things were left dangling.

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What Was The Point Of Revealing Tom’s Sexuality?

It was the 11th hour that we discovered Tom’s sexuality and, seemingly, for no apparent reason. As far as we can tell, it only served the plot once, with Wayne injecting the line, “I did not believe he was fabricating—not about this,” to make us think Tom Purcell was lying about something that could alter the course of the case. It didn’t. Was it to hint at Roland and Tom getting closer than just friends? Roland never married, and Tom’s feelings were extremely hurt when Roland insinuated he might have something to do with the case. We still don’t know where Tom was at 6:30 p.m. the night his kids disappeared. Now we never will.

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What Happened Between Julie And Her Father?

When we were told something happened between Julie and Tom in 1990, what exactly was it? There was a call to a police hotline from Julie saying the man looking for her, acting like her father, needs to leave her alone. That’s not exactly a “happening.” “I know what he did—the man on TV acting like my father,” Julie said on the call. Did she think it was Tom who sold her to the Hoyts? Next thing you know, Tom’s dead, and we’re left shrugging. Mind you, she was sold to a lithium-addicted woman by her mother, so suspecting her dad played a part in it is maybe not unreasonable.

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What Happened To Cousin Dan?

I mean, he’s not the most pivotal character, but it still remains to be seen who took cousin Dan. He obviously didn’t leave town without his wallet or car. We know he was eventually found in a drained quarry, but who put him there. Hoyt? Harris? This also raises questions about whether or not Lucy was killed by Harris. To what end? She went eight years without making a fuss, having sold her daughter to her boss at the chicken factory. If we had to wager this bet, Dan and Lucy likely got greedy and wanted more money, then—poof—they were gone. But sometimes, when you’re writing a TV show, it’s nice to spell things out.  

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Why Wouldn't Freddie Just Tell The Cops Who Was With Will?

Freddie, Freddie—if you’d had said something in 1980 about seeing a blonde woman and a black man with one eye, would this case not have been solved an awful lot faster? Would we even have a show? And when a teenager, in his testimony, says “they” repeatedly, maybe the cops should ask him who the other people were. Maybe? Like, imagine how “he was with his mom and this crazy woman,” would have sped things up. Why did he lie? Our guess is that Freddie and his friends were up to other nefarious things, maybe selling drugs to the neighborhood kids. There has to be a reason he cried so (very) much when interrogated.

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What Was The Point Of The Creepy Dolls? 

So, after all the buildup, Isabelle and Mr. July just liked the town fair? The dolls were such an important clue from the beginning that we thought it would surely mean something. In the end, it was used to tie season one to season three, which was fun for fans of the series, but this wasn’t a case of organized pedophilia nor human trafficking on a larger scale.

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What Was With Julie Drawing A Married Couple?

Almost all the drawings were clues, and among them were Julie’s doodles of a couple getting married. It couldn’t have been her parents. Isabelle had long been a widow by the time she started playing with the Purcell kids in the forest. No one we know got married on the show. Are we saying sometimes a doodle is just a doodle? Maybe she was just drawing the creepy dolls. Kids do the darnedest things. We do know that Julie ended up happily married to her childhood friend. Maybe having a happy family was all Julie ever wanted, and even as a child she drew the fantasy of her and Mike getting married. We’re glad she finally got her happy ending.  

Will we ever get the answers we’re looking for? Guess we’ll have to leave the rest up to our imagination.

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