“We see what we believe, not the other way around.” (Varga)
I was very excited about this series as I really loved the first two. Set in Minnesota, which along with North Dakota has the highest percentage of Scandinavian Americans per state in the USA, series 3 did not disappoint. On a basic level this American series was about the eternal subject of good and evil. It reminded me a lot of the book The Master and Margarita by Russian Mikhail Bulgakov. Themes of corruption, greed and the work of the devil. It is also similar in the sense of confusion the work causes in the viewer/reader. All of this done with some wit, excellent acting and a degree of cynicism towards life in the USA.
“A lie’s not a lie if you believe it’s true.” (Emmit)
Ewan MacGregor was cast in two roles, brothers Ray and Emmit Stussy. Surprisingly this worked well. Cop Gloria Burgle (Carrie Coon) provided a character which let us keep our feet on the ground. She was the light. The good. David Thewlis, on the other hand played the dark. The Devil. Fargo’s Palpatine.
“Feminine hygiene, deployed as a weapon?” (Sy)
The soundtrack to this show was complex and influential with Oskus Urug by Radik Tyulyush, a Tuvan throat singer, standing out as a very unusual, eerie piece used to effect perfectly in episode 1. Other great tunes by Django Reinhardt, Bing Crosby, Gogol Bordello and Santana were included. The tunes and the way they are used in Fargo are similar to how Tarantino uses music in his films. They add so much to the scene and often replace dialogue. They can elevate the horror, make you laugh, add speed or make the viewer feel sentimental.
“There’s violence to knowing the world isn’t what you thought.” (Gloria)
Overall in the Fargo series, season 3 stands out as different from seasons 1 and 2 and is nearly as good. Series 3 works as a stand alone whereas I would suggest watching series 1 and 2 back to back. The shows occasionally ask the viewer to suspend their disbelief but all three make a great box set views if you like a slow building, dark, twisted, beautifully framed show set in a snow covered landscape.
“The shallow end of the pool is where the turds float.” (Varga)