Previously, the boys were able to link a meth cook named Reggie LeDoux to a previous serial killing by this cult or whatever it is, and then from him back to Dora's ex-husband Charlie, resulting in a big shootout with a gas-masked, jock-strapped man. But this week we don't find out about that. Instead, we revisit more events between those two things, such as a barely connected race crime outside of Houston that takes up the bulk of the episode, and how many drugs it required Rust Cohle to ingest. Very exciting stuff.
Once Marty's ex-girlfriend Lisa goes to his wife Maggie about their affair -- remember that he went apeshit on her in her own home, and now doesn't have the manners to let her go apeshit on him in return, in a courthouse where they are employed -- Maggie throws Marty out. Because Marty has no friends, he immediately goes to live with Cohle, who runs interference in their marriage because he also has no friends. Marty spends the first few days flipping out, but then Cohle distracts him with an amazing game of dress-up bad-ass, in which they get to wear leather jackets and inject paprika in their veins and beat up on bikers and also get beat up by them. That does the trick! Marty is cheered right up.
After Charlie explains out loud and literally that the Yellow King Cult is full of old rich white men and their privilege, solving the case a good four episodes early, they go meet all of Reggie's acquaintances. A savory lot. Marty chases a stripper to a rave, where he chases a gross man named Weems to a peeing area, and then knocks the gross man Weems around for news of Reggie. It turns out that Reggie, in addition to being an avant-garde fashion icon, is of an entrepreneurial bent, and that he has contracted his drug services exclusively with this one biker gang.
Cohle is pleased, because he used to break bad with these same bikers and he knows everybody in the gang -- and because he gets to whine endlessly about being the DEA's stalking horse and whipping boy and whatever some more -- so they head to Beaumont Texas, a horrible place, to have a reunion of sorts. While Marty gets beat up for being square by the bikers, Cohle does all the drugs that there are in this world, and to prove his loyalty or something, agrees to go shakedown a crackhouse in the projects. He kind of has a feeling this is going to go poorly, and you know what, he is right!
The part where Cohle is running around with a biker by the hair, putting people in bathtubs for their own safety and ducking around through lines of laundry and row houses all over the place, that part was pretty good. But in the end, the mean bikers are beaten to hell by the gangsters of Beaumont, Texas, and Marty arrives at a precise place and time recommended by Cohle's psychic powers, just in time for him and his biker hostage to jump in the car and zoom away from the chaos they caused.
So yes, it was pretty good. 1995 Marty is always so appealing, especially when he is acting a mess, and up until Cohle gets him out of town he does that pretty much non-stop, it's his main way of being. And Cohle, well, Cohle is the kind of person who hurls himself off the wagon when it's time to do so, and also owns an entire foot locker with ordnance in it, up to and including grenades, and who doesn't mind stealing a kilo of coke from the police station in order to reestablish friendship with bikers and celebrate the moments of our lives with them.
On the downside: Nothing really happened? I mean a great deal happened, but not really. Cohle has some very disturbing ideas to share, as usual. Marty always looks like he is storing nuts for the winter. Nobody seems to hear Maggie talk even though she is the only person on the entire show with even a slice of knowing what the fuck is ever going on. Future Cohle continues to be repulsive on every single level, so that's gross and interesting, although I must say Old-Timey Cohle this week looked pretty rough himself. Maybe this is the episode that turns him into that. I would imagine after all the drugs, racism, and running around people's yards he must be pretty tuckered out.
Next Week: A creep sees the "shadow" on Cohle's soul, which will no doubt engender much monologuery about what even is a soul and whether a shadow is the absence of light and so on, while in 2012 the Boys finally figure out that Cohle is a/the suspect.
Dora Lange got killed! Maybe it was by a cult. Her ex-husband certainly was in jail with a man who was maybe the leader of the cult. The Boys went to the guy's compound where he was bonkers, and something weird happened. Got all that? Good, because none of it matters. This episode is not about that. This episode is about how Marty Hart ruined his marriage -- fairly efficiently -- and found domestic bliss with Rustin Cohle -- also fairly efficiently -- and how Cohle then dragged him backwards, screaming, into the entire mess of his life back in Texas.
Rust stands by the door and knocks on it so the guards outside close even the little window. Marty and Rust act like they are not charmed by Charlie the Ex, even though he is oddly charming.
Marty: "You fucked with us, Charlie!"
Charlie: "No, you just weren't listening. Also, what are you talking about?"
Marty: "You were friends with Reggie Ledoux in jail."
Charlie: "Not what I think of as friendship, per se. Wait, are you saying I sent him to torture my wife and prop her antlered naked body against a tree? Why would I do that?"
Marty: "That's not what we're talking about right now. Did you have pictures of Dori he might have seen? So he would know who to murder?"
Charlie: "She gave me some Polaroids on my way in. For masturbating, you see."
Marty: "If I weren't into yelling at you right now, I would give you a long boring speech about the importance of family."
Cohle: "What was your relationship with Reginald Ledoux?"
Charlie: "He made drugs out of cleansers and potatoes. Necessity is, as they say, the mother of invention."
The Boys: "You admire this?"
Charlie: "Kind of but I also thought he was a pedophile, or 'short-eyes.'"
The Boys: "That's giving away a free pass to murder you when you say it in jail."
Charlie: "No, but in private he would tell me strange things. While sharing drugs."
"He said that there's this place down south where all these rich men go to, uh, devil-worship. He said that, uh, they sacrifice kids, and whatnot. Women and children all got murdered there, and um, something about someplace called Carcosa and the Yellow King. He said there's all these like old stones out in the woods, people go to like worship. He said, uh... He said there's just so much good killin' down there. Reggie got this brand on his back, like in a spiral? He says that's their sign."