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MCN Review: FX's 'Fargo' Returns With New Storyline, Characters

Season three of FX’s anthology series Fargo continues to offer a nod and wink at the quirky Academy Award-winning movie on which it’s loosely based, given its crime-solving premise and its cold Minnesota environs.

But beyond that, anyone looking for a sequel to the movie — or for that matter, a continuation of the TV series’s first two seasons — will be somewhat disappointed in season three.

That’s not to say Fargo isn’t worth watching. On the contrary, the pilot episode of the series creates a number of storyline threads viewers will want to see through to conclusion.

Watch the 'Fargo' Season 3 Trailer

Set in 2010, the series stars Ewan McGregor deftly playing two roles — wealthy businessman Emmit Stussy, and Ray, his parole-officer brother. In the pilot, Ray approaches Emmit for money to buy an engagement ring for his sweetheart (and parolee) Nikki Swango (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), a competitive bridge player looking to land a big score. When Emmit — who has his own troubles dealing with a shadowy company he borrowed money from — rebuffs his younger brother’s request, Ray seeks to reclaim from Emmit a valuable stamp that he believes belongs to him.

His plan to steal it back, though, leads to unintended consequences — including a murder and subsequent investigation by local police chief Gloria Burgle (Carrie Coon) — setting off a series of events that engulfs all involved.

As with the previous two seasons of Fargo, writer/director/showrunner Noah Hawley (Legion) weaves a complicated storyline with surprisingly interchangeable characters who leave the viewer guessing as to who’s important and who is potentially expendable.

While the pilot starts off slow — including a surreal opening scene that seemingly has nothing to do with show’s plot or characters — it’s worth tuning in to see how the story unravels.