AndersonVision Best TV of 2017: #1 – Fargo: Season 3 (FX)


The third season of Fargo is about a year away from looking like the most prophetic work of American fiction since World War II. I’m going to be purposefully vague on that statement, as we discuss the series. But, think about where Fargo went this year. Breaking away from digging into the lives of the Solversons, the show does something new. It takes us close enough to the present day and asks to examine contemporary crime.

This year focus on twin brothers Emmit and Ray Stussy. It’s a typical fight of one having a better life than the other. When Ray’s life starts to improve, he demands his fair share. This puts him at odds with Emmit, but Emmit has his own problems. Emmit is the Parking Lot King of the Twin Cities, but he got himself in a bind with V.M. Varga. Varga represents an international consortium who has arrived to call in a debt.

If you’re familiar with mob tactics, this is called busting out. Varga and his cohorts arrive to the Stussy Business HQ to get to work. They setup new offices, open new lines of credit and use the business as a front to hide their activities. Emmit is promised an out from the hectic nature of his business, but then he has Ray pounding on his back. Ray wants a stamp that he was promised, but Emmit refuses. It means nothing to Emmit anymore, but it’s Ray way of reclaiming his dignity.

Does it matter? No. Ray is dead before getting what he’s owed and Emmit moves onto the next person to manipulate. Watching as laws, boundaries and decent are broken for Emmit’s personal gain…it’s enough to make you mad. Luckily, Ray Wise works as an Angel of Vengeance. He follows Carrie Coon and Mary Elizabeth Winstead through their journeys. He knows they are good people that will punish the wicked. Sometimes, that’s enough.

Ewan McGregor as Emmit Stussy is the villain that makes this series work. While David Thewlis kills it as the bulimic V.M. Varga, he’s the typical heavy for a crime tale. Yeah, it’s pretty much corporate crime, but it all belongs in the world of Fargo. However, Emmit Stussy is the kind of criminal that allows misdeeds to profit in an unfair world. He takes advantage of trust and ruins those that choose to partner with him.

Emmit stomps on people to stay one step ahead of justice, while everyone who helps him just falls away to misfortune. When vengeance finally finds him, it’s only when he’s hiding out in the safety of his family. After he kills his own brother, gets Varga to take the heat and leaves Nikki to her fate….this man deserves every bad thing in the world. It’s the mindset of a man that has no problem destroying the world to save his niche that just makes this season seem so vital now. I would love to hear Noah Hawley discuss the creation of this season’s storyline. There has to be something hidden under the surface.


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