Reading Too Much Into ‘True Detective’: Clues You May Have Missed From ‘Hunters In The Dark’


Welcome to our weekly breakdown of the minutia of Nic Pizzolatto’s True Detective. While Brian Grubb provides his always excellent coverage of the series (here’s his write-up of the most recent episode), here — as we have in the past with Breaking Bad, Mad Men, Better Call Saul, and Mayans M.C. — we will look at some of the details viewers may have missed; references to other shows, movies or books; and theories on particular suspects. We scour Reddit threads, social media, and podcasts in an attempt to curate the best intel about each episode.

— The biggest clue came in the final seconds of the episode, and while it didn’t give away the whole ballgame by any stretch, it certainly did clue us into what we suspected: That Mr. Hoyt is involved in the disappearance of Julie (and might be her biological father). Tom found the “pink room,” which is a bunker in the basement of the Hoyt Home. Remember Mary July, aka Julie Purcell, told the street kid she used to hang with that she was a “secret princess … from the pink rooms.”

Behold the pink room:


Knowing that clicks a few pieces into place. We know that Hoyt (or someone working for him) abducted her. We can assume that Lucy was aware of Julie’s abduction (and probably blessed it or participated in it, as a means to give her “a better life” or for money). It also seemingly confirms that Lucy wrote the ransom note, designed to give Tom some closure. We can also assume that Will’s death was both a separate event and that Lucy could not survive the guilt.

Mr. Hoyt, by the way, will be played by Michael Rooker.

— We also officially know that it was Julie who left the message with the police (her fingerprints were on the phone in Russellville). Let’s re-examine the message she left in light of what we know:

“I saw him on the television. Leave me alone. Make him leave me alone. That’s not my real name. Tell him to leave me alone. I know what he did. The man on TV acting like my father! Where’s my brother? Will. I don’t know what he did with him. We left him resting. Tell him to leave me alone. It—he took me, and I’m never coming back. Just leave me alone.”