TV Show Review

TV Review: FARGO: Season 1, Episode 10: Morton’s Fork [FX]

Billy Bob Thornton Fargo Morton's Fork

FX’s Fargo Morton’s Fork TV Show ReviewFargo: Season 1, Episode 10: Morton’s Fork brings an end to the bloody mess that Lester Nygaard (Martin Freeman) inadvertently started when he took a hammer to his wife’s head. Fargo has been one of the best shows on television, so is this finale a fitting conclusion? Only a little.

I kept telling myself that Morton’s Fork was more exciting than it was, but for the entire hour and a half, I was just waiting for it to be the Fargo that I’ve come to know week after week. Each episode has at least had one moment that gives the audience a punch in the gut, and you would expect the finale to be packed with right hooks. Instead, the series culminates in what is probably the most underwhelming and lifeless episode of the run. Missing is the dark humor to balance the extreme violence. Questionable character decisions abound. It’s just all a little off, and not in the quirky way that it’s supposed to be.

After sending his second wife to death-by-Malvo (Billy Bob Thornton), Lester tries to do what he did the first time around and cleverly cover his tracks. But the police are the least of his problems, as Malvo is clearly aiming to put a bullet in Lester’s head. In fact, the police might end up saving Lester’s life. The FBI is in town and Deputy Molly Solverson’s (Allison Tolman) suspicions about Malvo are finally being recognized, with Chief Bill Oswalt (Bob Odenkirk) finally bowing his head and acknowledging his incompetence. With all the side plots wrapped up, Morton’s Fork is basically just a sprint to the finish.

I’ve put down Morton’s Fork as being a disappointing end to a great series, but it is still a solid episode. In the past the show has had its share of stumbles, but it was always salvaged by on-point performances, and this is no different. Now that it’s all said and done, I fully expect Thornton and Tolman to receive Emmy nominations for their superb work. In a perfect world, Freeman would get recognized as well, even though he falters a bit in this penultimate episode. His faux-innocent act really wears thin, but that could just be Lester’s problem and not Freeman’s.

Morton’s Fork should have been more impactful than it was, but that doesn’t make it a bad episode. It just would have been nice to see this series, touted as one of the best of the year, really hit it out of the park in the end. It lacked that Coen Brothers feel, and that’s really what we’ve been enjoying these past 10 weeks.

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About the author

Nick DeNitto

Nick DeNitto graduated with Honors from Adelphi University. He began writing movie reviews in middle school and has worked tirelessly to mold his own unique critical voice. He is currently affiliated with the National Board of Review and hopes that one day he is remembered as “The People’s Film Critic.”

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