Navarro In ‘True Detective,’ Explained: Did Navarro Leave Ennis?

It’s all over now. True Detective: Night Country has made its exit after enthralling us for six weeks with one of the most exciting stories that we’ve seen in recent times. And they’ve mostly managed to answer every possible question, neatly tie up all the loose ends, and deliver an ending that should be considered a satisfying conclusion. But there’s one thing that the show has purposefully left unaddressed. And that happens to be something as big as the fate of its lead character, state trooper Evangeline Navarro. Easily the most interesting character of this story, Kali Reis’ Evangeline Navarro was certainly the heart of the season, and she complemented Jodie Foster’s detective Elizabeth Danvers so well. We’re going to talk about the character and what happened to her by the end of the story, but let us do a short recap of the season (or series here) finale first.

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Spoilers Ahead


What Happened In The Finale?

Picking up from exactly where things left off last week, Danvers and Navare went deep inside the icy cave (which we can now refer to as Night Country), only to find out that it was beneath the Tsalal station. In fact, there was a proper, very methodical lab setup, and most importantly, the detective finally found missing scientist Raymond Clark, who had been hiding inside all along. It did take a lot of effort to get the terrifying story of Annie’s murder out of Clark, which confirmed that the now-dead Tsalal scientists indeed murdered Annie K. in an extremely brutal, unforgiving manner. And the reason for that was that Annie was hampering their “saving the world” research, which needed the Silver Sky mining company to deliberately poison the town. 

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Clark, who was in fact the one who actually killed Annie—in spite of claiming his “true love” for her—got froze to death, just like his buddies. As far as the deaths of other scientists, Danvers and Navarro did eventually realize that it was the women of the indigenous community who took justice into their own hands to take revenge for Annie. The detectives, however, let this go. Danvers got back to her job like nothing happened, while Navarro vanished in the wind. For more information, check out the detailed recap.


Was Evangeline Navarro A Good Detective?

There shouldn’t be any doubt about the investigative skills of Evangeline Navarro. Without her hunch and the burning desire to find the answers, we would have never known the truth about Annie K’s murder as well as how the scientists died. Her partner Liz Danvers might be more methodical and pragmatic and was a better detective if you go by the book, but the brash attitude of Navarro is also probably something Danvers needed. In many ways, Navarro actually pushed Danvers into solving the case(s). So, to answer the original question, Evangeline Navarro was a great detective, for sure.

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Why Did Navarro Come To Ennis?

If we go by what Danvers said in the end, Navarro, like most people, came to Ennis to get away from something. For her, it also meant coming back to her roots. Ennis was the place where her Inupiaq mother originally belonged before moving to Boston. Given her strained relationship with her abusive father, it is evident that the mother was clearly the favorite parent, and going back to Ennis was Navarro’s way of getting to know her mother and maybe staying close to her after her death. Navarro not only settled in Ennis but eventually joined the law; she effectively became a local. The Evangeline Navarro we saw over the course of this story felt like someone who had spent her entire life in this Alaskan town. It only indicates how attached she got to the place.


Did Navarro Really See Holden?

Before going into that, let us address the supernatural angle of True Detective: Night Country one last time. Throughout the season, we kept wondering whether there was something out of the ordinary going on or not. The show’s decision to not provide a clear answer to that question might bother some of you, but in my opinion, that was the right way to go. Because if a show or movie somehow manages to start a conversation that goes on years after it’s over (just like the first season of True Detective or something like Twin Peaks,  for example), then that should be considered a huge success. So, we can always come up with theories like Hank Prior, Raymond Clark, or someone else being the one behind randomly putting Annie K’s severed tongue on Tsalal’s floor. But considering the possibility of Annie K herself doing that wouldn’t be too much of a stretch either, right?

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The reason I am bringing this up here is that Navarro seeing Danvers’ dead son Holden is something that’s theoretically not possible. I mean, yes, it was a vision, but even then, Holden saying exactly what his mother needed to hear to Navarro is impossible. Not to mention, the teddy bear only makes the whole thing harder to believe. So there can really be two explanations here. The first is the logical one, which says Navarro somehow hallucinated the whole thing, and the story is something made up by her subconscious. Considering she’s an inherently good person by herself, isn’t it obvious that, realizing Danvers is suffering inside, she would actually like to do something to relieve her partner from the pain?

The other theory is based on her Inupiaq name, which I’m failing to pronounce, but in English, it translates to the sun that comes after the long and dark night. This is obviously associated with Ennis being in the Arctic Circle, where night and day can last for months at a time, unlike the rest of the world. Maybe Navarro indeed possessed the power to take away the pain of people, just like she did with Danver. Although I do think this is quite far-fetched and would have made more sense if she could save Julia.

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What Really Happened To Navarro?

Once everything was done and dusted, Navarro had no reason to stay in this line of work anymore. It clearly took a toll on her, which we could all understand. And considering what happened to Julia, staying in Ennis would have been way too painful. So Navarro did the only logical thing she could do: go away. But she didn’t go far, as we saw Danvers visiting her at a cabin, which is probably just a drive away from Ennis. Maybe Navarro didn’t want to leave Danvers, the only living person she now considers a real friend. The friendship between Danvers and Navarro seemed extremely unlikely in the beginning, but considering the existence they shared, it only made sense in the end. Evangeline Navarro did go away from Ennis in the end, but life clearly didn’t end there for her. As far as what she will do after this, I bet Issa Lopez wants to live that up to our imagination.


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Rohitavra Majumdar
Rohitavra Majumdar
Rohitavra likes to talk about movies, music, photography, food, and football. He has a government job to get by, but all those other things are what keep him going.

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