Aw jeez, we didn’t think that FX’s hit series Fargo was really going to run for just one single season, don’t cha know, but it sure is exciting to hear that we’re getting more of the good stuff, you betcha! (End bad slang usage.) Hot on the heels of some major Emmy nominations — 18 total, the most for any FX series ever — the cable channel has renewed their beloved series, based on the Coen Brothers’ film of the same name, for ten all new episodes. And they really will be all new, thanks to a new setting, a new cast of characters, a new actual cast, and a new crime to follow. But, rest assured, this Fargo promises to still feel like both of its predecessors.
So what does the second season of the series hold for us? Well, probably plenty more winter jackets. But this time, they will be vintage winter jackets.
Deadline reports that the new season will be a prequel, tossing us back to 1979. The series will specifically take place in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, with some of the action also playing out in Luverne, Minnesota (so no actual Fargo, and no Bemidji — Luverne is about six hours away from Bemidji, while Sioux Falls is just about half an hour away from Luverne). The use of Sioux Falls should be no real shock to sharp-eared viewers, as creator Noah Hawley noted at the TCA Summer Press Tour, “If you were paying attention to Season 1, we made a lot of references to Sioux Falls.”
But who exactly will we be hanging out with in Sioux Falls? Turns out, it’s someone we already know. Well, kind of. Although the first season of the show focuses on local Bemidji cop Molly Solverson (Allison Tolman), her father Lou (Keith Carradine) pops up a lot, too — which is interesting, because Lou also used to be a cop. Does Lou have some stories? You betcha! (Sorry.) The new season will be all about a thirty-three-year-old Lou (so, no, not Carradine), back in South Dakota after a tour in Vietnam.
And, no, that time period is not random. As Hawley tells it, “That time period is interesting — post-Vietnam, post-Watergate … the best of America versus worst. That sense, I think, that this war had come home with people, and the violence and brutality of it…Lou Solverson went to Vietnam and came home, but now he’s come back and it’s here — it’s domestic.”
And, yes, that means that our beloved Tolman will not be back for more. Sorry, I just need a minute. Sniff sniff. I’m okay! This also means that Billy Bob Thornton — in my mind, the worst part and weakest link of the show’s inaugural season — will also not be back. That lessens the sting a little bit (and feel free to debate the merits of his Lorne Malvo in the comments, but play nice).
We will meet plenty of other people in the new season, however, including Lou’s wife (and Molly’s mom), who was dead before the first season kicked off. (And, despite some apparent urging by TV critics, Tolman will not be playing Molly’s mom on the show — also, you guys, come on.) Guess who else will be there! A young Molly — like, four-years-old Molly — so we do have some lil Molly stuff to look forward to. (The first season of the show memorably cast Joey King as its sole kiddo, a role she pulled off with grace and maturity.)
As the first season of Fargo tied back into Fargo the film, it looks like this next season won’t have a similar thread (the action of the film plays out in 1987, so while it’s not impossible that the series will flow back into the film, it would need to serve as a prequel to it, not a loosely-connected sequel, as the first season was), but the tonal connections and general spirit remain intact.
When it comes to the central crime of the next season, well, that’s been kept under wraps, but the show will indeed again focus on one major crime. Lord knows, Lou sure talked a lot about his time on the force during the first season, so we may be getting to hear more about things that were previously just hinted at.
The one thing we don’t know — if our own Chris Campbell will be recapping this new season. Chris?