If I was heading off to live on a desert island or, more likely, fleeing the imminent nuclear apocalypse brought on by Donald Trump v North Korea, Fargo is one of the five movies I’d take to fill my lonely days.* I just love it that much. It’s a little bit about the script, it’s a lot about the performances (Frances McDormand! Bill Macy!) and it’s an insane amount about the fantastic accents.
It goes without saying, then, that when Fargo the series debuted a couple of years ago, I was pretty damn intrigued. Would it be as good? Would it be as funny? Would it be as twisted? The answer in every case was “Yah, yah! You betcha!”
Fargo the series is great. If you haven’t seen it, you should be binging it right now. Or you could just tune in when season three begins on SBS. The good news is, since each season is a stand-alone story, you don’t need to watch the first two to understand the gist. (Small towns. Grisly murders. Lots of weirdos. Perplexed cops. It’s damn cold.)
But in preparation for season three, let’s look back at some of the craziest moments of the first two seasons.
When Lorne Malvo went nuts and did a bunch of murders in one long take
Because let’s face it, Fargo wouldn’t be Fargo without some grisly murders.
When Malvo repairs his own shattered leg with nothing but a bit of anaesthetic and some window cord… and makes us want to vomit
When Lester falls through the ice
Fargo also wouldn’t be Fargo without someone finding themselves alone on a frozen tundra, attempting to outrun a madman (or in this case, a lawman) with a gun.
When Peggy Blumquist insists on politeness from her hostage
Even if you are bound up and being held captive in a creepy mountain lodge, it’s important to remember your Ps and Qs. Especially if the lady of the house is offering you beans.
When those UFOs showed up
It’s not my favourite part of the season… but it’s certainly one of the weirdest. Crazy UFOs descending over the Minnesota sky and distracting everyone from committing crimes, or from running away from the scene of them.
When Ron Swanson, attorney at law, drunkenly speechifies at the police station
If you need a lawyer, call Nick Offerman and his fabulous moustache-less beard. He’ll defend you to til your last breath. Excuse the obvious death penalty snafu. (He’s slightly inebriated.)
The first massacre at the diner
Is season two’s first massacre its best? For pure reckless idiocy, it’s pretty hard to top.
When Hanzee has had enough and lets his guns do the talking
Hanzee Dent (Zahn McClarnon) will not be disrespected.
Anytime there's small talk
One of the most glorious things about Fargo is its ability to mix the grotesque with the mundane. Never is this better seen than in the opening episode when Ted Danson and Patrick Wilson's detectives casually discuss the finer points of souffles and casseroles while investigating a grisly triple homicide.
Peggy's hit and run
Peggy (Kirsten Dunst) is probably the most gloriously unhinged character in season two, and her actions in the first episode set the whole series in motion when she accidentally hits Rye Gerhardt (Kieran Culkin) - the youngest son of a local organised crime family - with her car. Nonplussed, she continues home with his head through the windshield and leaves him for dead in the garage, before telling her husband she hit a deer, and making hamburgers and potatoes for dinner as if it was all NBD.
* The other films, in case you were wondering, would be When Harry Met Sally, Bringing Up Baby, The Station Agent (IMDb it - it’s an undiscovered gem) and The Sound of Music. Don’t judge me - Julie Andrews calms my frazzled nerves. If the world is ending, I need her by my side.
The third installment of Fargo premieres on SBS at 8.30pm on Wednesday 17 May. Double episodes will air for the first three weeks, followed by single episodes from 9.30pm for the remaining weeks.
Watch the first episode of season 3 at SBS On Demand right here: