I tried to watch The Walking Dead after seeing the fourth True Detective episode, and it just ain't cuttin' it. So I came here to think it out at the expense of your attention.

Something about this episode seemed very Inferno-esque, as in Dante. At first it was the clubs that struck me, the strip club, the rave and then the biker club — each club scene was a step lower down the scale, getting seedier and weirder on the way down.

But then again you could probably count the prison and court in the opening and the police department as well, and the hospital — they're all structured places where people gather for a specific purpose, structured human congregations, and every time the scene cuts from one of those places and they come up for air, Marty and Rust's lives on the outside are that much more unraveled. It even becomes non-linear in the montage sequence before they go see the Iron Crusaders.

Not sure if the projects would count as something like a club, but it's another example of that sort of structured human congregation that seems to make up the framework of the set pieces in this episode — except it's not one they come up for air from, only the helicopter does that by the scene's end.

Actually, those structured human congregations seem to mirror each other in opposite ways:

  • In the beginning of the episode is the prison and the court, which is all about law, and the end of the episode is the projects, which is like a different kind of prison and everything we see there is lawless;
  • The strip club seems to mirror the biker club, complete with strippers, except one operates within the law and the other is outside of the law and full of outlaws;
  • And the rave scene mirrors the hospital scene, complete with pharmaceuticals, with Marty in control in the rave scene and being controlled in the hospital scene.

Dammit, this show...

True Detective and Structured Human CongregationsS