Sunday, July 26, 2020

Don't Make a Scene: Fargo

The Story: I'm doing a lot of complaining these days. It's a symptom of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Everything seems to be pissing me off and I'm starting to think (despite the quietly overwhelming evidence otherwise) that people are plain stupid, drivers are incompetent, governments have their collective heads up their asses, and that the only worst government than representative democracy would be one in which people actually DID have control. Given the systemic racism in the troop-culture of police departments, I'd be firmly in the "Defund the Police" camp, if it wasn't for the fact that I live near Seattle. Recently, a bunch of protesters grabbed a couple city-blocks, dis-invited any police presence, set up their own "Security Force" and proceeded to show just how incompetent and cocked up people doing it on their own could be. Think that "Black Lives Matter" to the police? Didn't matter to the "Security Force," either. And they had no names, no badge numbers, no body-cam's, no accountability. People got hurt, raped, and a couple teenagers murdered (both black and it matters) by said "Security Force" and no one can be held accountable. Wouldn't let the police in to investigate. And when they did, the crime scenes (and they were crime scenes) were so compromised, no one could find anything useful to follow up. And everybody up there has been as quiet as Money, Mississippi was after Emmett Till got killed. How liberal of them. How progressive (that was sarcasm).

It did inspire Seattle's police chief to come in and tell the protesters they couldn't play at taking care of themselves any more as they weren't any good at it. So much for "CHAZ"...or "CHOP." They should have called it "CHUMP."

As you see, I've been complaining a lot. 

And it's been in the form of Fargo's Marge Gustafson. "I don't think much of your COVID-19 reporting to the White House instead of the CDC, there." "I don't agree 100% with your protesting tactics there..." "I don't agree 100% with your bald-faced lies there, Mr. President." "I don't think much of your Press Secretary either, but the hair is nice..." "I don't think much of your bean advertisement there, you or your Barbie-kid." "I don't think much of your 'Security Farce' there, CHUMP..." "I don't think much of your bone-headed conspiracy theory there, former Facebook-friend..." "I don't think much of your sending jack-booted thugs in unmarked vans into Portland there, DHS." "I don't think much of seeing your ugly mug without a mask there, fellah..."

Things like that. Seems to soften it a bit. The alternative would be to fire up the wood-chipper. I wonder if N95's come with a muffler-option?

The Set-Up: While an extortion-kidnapping plot goes on in Brainerd, some collateral damage has been inflicted. During a routine traffic stop, a state trooper is killed and the scene witnessed by passing motorists, who are also killed by the hired kidnappers. Brainerd police chief Marge Gunderson (Frances McDormand) goes out to investigate and is driving back with officer Lou (Bruce Bohne)


Marge is driving; Lou sits next to her.  
MARGE You look in his citation book? 
LOU Yah. 
He looks at his notebook. 
LOU Last vehicle he wrote in was a tan Ciera at 2:18 am. Under plate number he put DLR. 
LOU I figure they stopped him... 
LOU ...and shot him before he could finish filling out the tag number. - 
MARGE Uh-huh. - 
LOU So... 
LOU I got the state lookin' for a Ciera with a tag startin' DLR. They don't got no match yet. 
MARGE  I'm not sure that I agree with you 100% on your police work there, Lou. - 
LOU Yah? - 
MARGE Yah. I think that vehicle there probably had dealer plates.
LOU Oh. 
Lou gazes out the window, thinking.
LOU  Jeez. 
MARGE Yah. Say, Lou... 
MARGE Ya hear the one about the guy who couldn't afford personalized plates, so he went and changed his name to J2L 4685? 
LOU Yah, that's a good one.


Words by Joel and Ethan Coen

Pictures by Roger Deakins and Joel Coen

Fargo is available on DVD and Blu-Ray from M-G-M Home Entertainment, Warner Home Entertainment, Fox Home Entertainment, Shout Factory and who ever else is distributing M-G-M these days.

It's complicated.


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