Season 3 of True Detective, starring Mahershala Ali, has people approaching the debut of the show with a mix of excitement and dread.

When True Detective first premiered on HBO, crime drama fans and enthusiasts for television excellence were floored. Viewers praised the quality of the production, the eerie, modern gothic setting, the world created by Nic Pizzolatto and David Milch, and the excellent performances by everyone involved, but especially Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson.

Before Season 2 dropped, it seemed promising. With a cast including Colin Farrell, Rachel McAdams, Vince Vaughn, and Taylor Kitsch, the sophomore series dynamic had incredible potential.

But then it premiered. There are a lot of reasons why True Detective Season 2 turned out to be just an average and sometimes awful show: viewers didn’t know what decade we were in — it looked at first like the late ’70s or ’80s, but then someone would whip out a smartphone. There wasn’t a compelling mystery, and many thought Vince Vaughn was “miscast” in his role. But HBO executive Vince Lombardo says he’s all to blame: he rushed the second series to production.

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