Following whatever transpires tonight on HBO, we should make one thing abundantly clear: There are no official plans for a True Detective season 4. Yet, that is not stopping us from taking a panoramic look at the future of this franchise.
Throughout the promotion of season 3, there was never any indication that it would be the final one to air. As a matter of fact, we’ve remained confident that creatively, there is so much more gas left in the series’ tank. That is a sentiment corroborated by the remarks of series creator Nic Pizzolatto, who has stated both in interviews and on social media over the past few weeks that he does have an idea as to what a season 4 could look like.
Now, of course, comes a reminder that an idea does not a television show make. You need to have the scripts, the commitment from the network, and a solid plan for production. There are budgets and casting and locations to consider. There’s also coming up with a proper timeline that suits both the network and the creative team involved.
Judging from what we’ve seen and heard, HBO would be open to a True Detective season 4, as this current season serves as a creative rebirth for the franchise. Season 2 had great individual moments but was a cumulative dumpster fire marred by some questionable casting (Vince Vaughn?) and a by-committee approach to furthering along the story that just didn’t work. It also felt rushed in order to capitalize on the success of the first season. If there was more time between season 1 and season 2, maybe it would have been less time before season 3. The show almost had to enter TV purgatory before proving this year that it could come back out and deliver something beautiful.
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So when could True Detective season 4 premiere?
We’d argue that, if it is renewed, you’re still looking at a 2021 launch, at the earliest. HBO has to decide first that they want it, and then Pizzolatto then has to write it. There’s not going to be a hurry to shoot it, and the network does have a crowded schedule. Think in terms of Watchman, Westworld, and the upcoming Game of Thrones prequel series that could be airing as soon as late 2020 or early 2021, depending on how the pilot ends up faring.
Sometimes, patience is a virtue and distance makes the heart grow fonder. Do we need to insert even more cliches than this in order to emphasize our point?
As for what the story could be, the one thing we know is this: Pizzolatto has zero interest in turning True Detective into the crime Avengers with season 1 and season 3 characters joining forces. He’s intrigued by the shared universe but does not want to steep his thought-provoking franchise into super-silly, corny territory.
Are you hoping for a True Detective season 4?
Beyond this, when would you like to see the series premiere? Be sure to let us know in the comments. (Photo: HBO.)