Story By: G. H. HARDING
Rachel McAdams

TRUER --- In True Detective’s first season, music director T Bone Burnett helped elevate the show’s intense drama with a rather scintillating mix of haunting, original “roots-rock” tunes and classic tracks by acts like Captain Beefheart. Burnett is back at the helm for the much-anticipated second season, which has relocated from the Louisiana bayou to the wilds of Los Angeles and stars Colin Farrell, Vince Vaughn, Taylor Kitsch, and Rachel McAdams. The show’s creator, Nic Pizzolatto, has been tight-lipped about the new season. But we do know that there’s a new director (make that directors) on board this time around.

Cary Fukunaga, who directed all the episodes in the first season, will be an executive producer this time out. This second season will have multiple directors. Justin Linn, who directed the Fast & Furious movies, has directed the first two episodes of the eight-episode season.

I absolutely adored the first season; Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson were both spot-on perfect.

The show didn’t score as many Emmy Awards as hoped for, but I think this HBO show was among the best things on TV I’ve seen—certainly, the finale of Season One was reason enough to tune into this amazing show.

And McConaughey’s signature line (“Time is a flat circle”) still resonates.

The previews, so far, have portrayed somewhat the same moody and mystical atmosphere (with a great song featured, written by Lera Lynn and Rosanne Cash and called “The Only Thing Worth Fighting For”) that was evidenced in Season One. And that season had a great theme song: “Far from Any Road” by The Handsome Family.

In a recent interview Burnett said, “It has really strong characters. It’s like a hard-boiled detective [novel]. The first read like a Faulkner novel. But this is more in the James M. Cain and Ross Macdonald kind of world. Nic is a very studied writer.”

I am hopeful that Vince Vaughn’s portrayal of the mob villain will prove to be a highlight. He remains a terrific actor, in my opinion, but to me his talents have been squandered or wasted in many of those terrible film comedies he’s done.

Me? I can’t wait. June 21. Check out the trailer here:

WITHER ENTOURAGE?--- After a massive amount of hype—more than any movie so far this summer season—it turns out that the feature film of the HBO series Entourage was not the movie everyone wanted to see. I was in touch with HBO twice about a pre-release press screening, only to be told that they had nothing to do with it. Being that the original series was a major HBO staple, I wonder how that’s even possible.

With a much-hyped media tour, as well, the picture has so far fallen way below anyone’s expectations. I still want to see it, but I wonder what went wrong here. Stay tuned . . .

RAVEN ON THE VIEW --- With thirty-seven guest spots behind her, Raven-Symone has officially been chosen as the newest co-host for The View on ABC. Along with Whoopi, Nicole Wallace, and Rosie Perez, she’ll attempt to help the struggling show. I saw a show last week with Brian Wilson as a guest—and as I reported, she barely said a word. Good luck!

WILLIAMS GONE? --- I hear it’s all but a done deal that Brian Williams will not be returning to his earlier NBC Nightly News post. Lester Holt, who I’ve always enjoyed, is locked as the new host. The only remaining question is: Does he stay with the network or leave with a hefty paycheck? I guess we’ll see . . .

Meanwhile, I wonder who would get his first major-exit interview should it happen—Barbara Walters or Diane Sawyer?

CLOSING NOTES --- There was a widely-circulated story this week that Disney’s Tomorrowland (created through the collaboration between Brad Bird and George Clooney) could lose upwards of $140 million. This would be Disney’s second disaster epic after Johnny Depp’s clunker The Love Ranger back in 2013.That film lost an estimated $150 million-dollar loss. What’s really interesting is that this story said that, since Disney had The Avengers and the forthcoming new Star Wars sequel from J.J.Abrams, it’s not really an issue. How can it not really be an issue, though? Those folks better keep up attendance on the East Coast at Disney World and the West Coast’s Disneyland . . . and while at it, they might want to star wishing up a star (and I mean the ones in the night sky, not the ones on the silver screen) …

The season’s debut Hannibal episode was exquisite …. More Monday …

Lots of mixed reviews for Love & Mercy, the new feature film epic about Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys. As I said Monday, I saw it and liked it . . . but there was a lot of information left out. I think, depending on your own knowledge base on all things Brian, there’s a chance that you’ll feel a little underwhelmed by it. I don’t remember for sure, but the character of Van Dyke Parks (who was and is a major Wilson reference over the years) is barely there. He’s in the movie, but is only referred to as Van . . . and then promptly disappears. I’d still go see it, but be forewarned—the die-hard Wilson fans may feel like this is merely a retread of what they already know. What they don’t yet have, though, is the mega-inspired performance of actor Paul Dano, who plays Brian Wilson during the period of late 1965 through to early 1967 like a man nearly possessed to the point of madness as he tries passionately to capture the music in his mind.

While talking about the new Love & Mercy film about Brian Wilson, I would be remiss if I didn’t share some feelings from others about Wilson’s new album No Pier Pressure as well.

An anonymous source, upon hearing the new album, reports that “those songs on the new album that embody the vintage Brian Wilson ‘sound,’ created especially for the Beach Boys and evocative of the sweetest summers past, are often led astray by what sounds to me like a collection of synth-drenched and decidedly half-baked songs that seem all the more appropriate as the cheesy background music in a low-priced Chinese buffet-style eatery.” My source goes on to celebrate songs like the first track (“This Beautiful Day”), the third “What Ever Happened,” and the seventh track (“The Right Time,” featuring Brian’s fellow Beach Boy Al Jardine). Weirdly, the best songs seem to be the odd-numbered tracks—while the even-numbered tracks (especially “Runaway Dancer,” which feels further away from what Brian is supposed to be doing than anything on the album—with an absurdly out-of-place ‘80s-style and synth-heavy instrumentation, I find it impossible and depressing to know that the young man who wrote “I Just Wasn’t Made for These Times” is now writing trite tripe like “Runaway Dancer” and that just distracts the entire listening experience. At this point, I still prefer the Beach Boys more recent album, That’s Why God Made the Radio – I love Brian Wilson, but this new material doesn’t stand up to that new Beach Boys’ album from 2012.”

Whether you love or hate Wilson’s music and the new feature film, it seems pretty clear to me that Brian and his music will maintain presence “All Summer Long” (a great Beach Boys hit from 1964 used in the end credits of the 1973 George Lucas hit, American Graffiti) . . .