This isn’t the first time Noah Hawley’s show has trespassed into a realm that isn’t too keen on keeping a healthy, amicable relationship with beings of flesh and blood. But this may just be the first time that Fargo is truly terrifying. We’re done with the chucklesome flying saucers and antagonists who seem practically otherworldly. Frankly, none of that had the air of menace that surrounds the main villain of this season—Ole Munch—holding us hostage in the limbo where we’re unsure as to what it is we’re dealing with here. The bloodcurdling fear that Hawley associates with the otherwise much-played-out theme of debt is what keeps the air heavy in the third episode of Fargo season 5. God might’ve checked out already. Who saves Dot and the people after her?
What’s Inside Roy Tillman’s Can Of Worms?
The Tillmans couldn’t have owed more than they do now. But most importantly, and disastrously, for the bunch, is the person (?) they’ve chosen to owe to. Donny’s body can be taken care of. The threat from the ginormous man in a kilt they’ve messed with? Not so much. Gator’s trying, though. What more can you expect of a no-good sloppy dude with a jacket and cap for a personality and a Confederate flag flat above his headboard? His father, nonetheless, is aware of how far this wobbly foal can run. But he certainly overestimates his loser offspring’s ability to protect himself against a storm of terror like Munch. Or maybe he just doesn’t care enough to do the needful that’d save his son’s life. He’s got a new and sketchily young wife, though. It’s improvised sweetness that helps Karen play the part of the doting wife in front of company like Odin and in the privacy of the bedroom, which is the only place where Roy takes his conservative mask off. But neither the illegal weapon laundering business he’s got going on with the man of bitter, nasty truths nor the handcuffs Karen pulls out of their bedside chest of secrecy can keep his mind from wandering off. He longs for his Nadine, long after she’s taken the form of Dot and made a family and a safe place of her own.
What’s Dot Doing To Protect Her New Life?
Dot’s a one-of-a-kind woman. And her methods, be it making breakfast for Scotty or securing their house against the evil of her past, are one-of-a-kind. She’s found the perfect partner in Wayne. Living the majority of his life by the gospel of his terrifying mother, Wayne’s got a lot of practice being puppeteered by powerful women. And perhaps it’s living in denial for so long that makes him gobble up any crumb of an incoherent narrative Dot throws his way. Dot not only runs the house, but also the actions and decisions that the members of her family will take. And once authority like that has been set in stone, convincing Wayne to get on board with the changed plans for the Halloween costumes is a piece of cake. Electrified wires hugging the window frame might keep her home safe. But it’s the makeshift weapons Dot and Scotty can carry if they dress up as zombie hunters that would at least give them a measly shot at warding off Roy’s men. Who’s going to notice Wayne anyway? And if that’s not enough, she’d make her plan bulletproof by slipping away at night and climbing a ladder three times as tall as her to switch up the street signs to confuse the people who’d come hunting for Roy’s lost bride. Talk about improvisation!
How Are The Cops Faring In This Mess?
Indira’s certainly not having a great time in the weird, almost dystopian office that sits the terrifying Lyon matriarch. Getting Lorraine to cower and admit that her feisty little daughter-in-law was not only kidnapped but involved in a gas station massacre that cost two lives is obviously impossible. Even Indira’s experienced superior officer has naive dreams about the cooperation they can expect from the Lyons. What keeps all-powerful families like the Lyons going is the united front they put up. No matter the vicious claw-out fights behind closed doors, in front of the law and the public, Lorraine’s a loyal mother-in-law defending Dot’s nutty claims. After all, much like the way Wayne’s all too eager to buy whatever nonsense Dot concocts, the cops in that town are bound by the power hierarchy to let things slide when it comes to this family. Lorraine’s got a clear idea of what purpose the enforcers of law serve. When the law itself serves the likes of Lorraine, its keepers have no other choice but to follow.
What Happens In The End?
There comes a point in every peculiar season of Hawley’s show where you find yourself inadvertently looking forward to seeing things go absolutely bonkers. You know that the narrative is going to take a route that’s bound for something crazier than what’s been going on. In season 5, the wait wasn’t long. The first episode itself gave you a false impression, only to shatter it with unhinged chaos in no time. It’s in episode 3 that you have that bingo moment where the mask of relative sanity slips and you see the season take its true, ghoulish shape. It was always going to be Munch, I guess. The man on the street is making the surroundings look Lilliputian. His mother didn’t see him coming and claiming the room upstairs as his own.
And what we didn’t see coming was the impulsive time-travel fiasco that brought us back 500 years, making us confused mourners at a Welsh lord’s funeral. I don’t know about you, but the wicked sin-eating trivia did catch me off guard. There’s a lot to unpack here. But foremost, as a longtime fan of the show, I’d advise you to refrain from trying to figure out whether the raggedy man consuming the lord’s sin is Munch or a freakishly similar-looking ancestor. Knowing Hawley, Munch might just be a centuries-old being who sold his soul to get a plate of food and a few coins. His self-admitted nihilism would make sense if he’s the same man whose debts were pardoned in exchange for him ensuring safe passage to heaven for the late lord. And wouldn’t that make it all the more plausible that debt is something he’d take more seriously than anything else, even in the present? The man hasn’t been reimbursed for all the pain and suffering that he had endured. And no matter how bulletproof Tillman thinks his dynasty to be, it stands no chance against the mud-covered man, his self-inflicted ritualistic wounds, and the floating runes blessing his mission. Munch is coming to collect. And if the ending scene is any indication, Tillman’s family will be hit before Gator and his trusted army can break into Dot’s fort. Is it the last we see of the son hankering for the self-proclaimed alpha father’s stamp of approval? If he’s foolish enough to mess with Witt when he’s caught red-handed stealing Donny’s wallet from the evidence, he’s foolish enough to underestimate the measures Dot would take to protect her new life.