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What To Expect From True Detective Season 4

True Detective Season 4 Header

Will True Detective season 4 happen, and if so, when would it release? HBO's True Detective returned for season 3 this year after spending several years on hiatus. Being an anthology series inherently enables True Detective to come and go as its producers - and, more specifically, its creator and primary writer, Nic Pizzolatto - please. So, it wasn't surprising that True Detective season 3 took nearly three years to release after first being announced back in 2016.

Starring Mahershala Ali as Detective Wayne Hays and Stephen Dorff as Detective/Lieutenant Roland West, True Detective season 3 centered on the murder of Will Purcell and the disappearance of his sister, Julie Purcell. Throughout the season, it became clear that True Detective season 3 existed in the same world as season 1, and that the stories told across both seasons even connected to each other. Perhaps True Detective season 4 can build on that.

Related: 10 Must-See Shows For Fans of True Detective to Watch

As with the previous seasons, True Detective season 4 would most likely be another anthology story, but there's still a lot that remains unclear about the series' future at this time. True Detective season 3 was an undoubted return to form for Pizzolatto and the HBO series as a whole, so there's surely excitement about the prospect of another season/story. But what can fans expect from a potential True Detective season 4?

True Detective Season 4 Renewal

True Detective Season 3 Key Art

HBO hasn't ordered True Detective season 4 yet, but that doesn't mean it won't happen. In January 2014, around the time True Detective season 1 premiered, HBO signed a two-year agreement with Pizzolatto, thus guaranteeing another season of the acclaimed crime drama. And it was only a few months later that news started to break about True Detective season 2, and it went into production later that year. But the rush to produce True Detective season 2 ultimately led to a disappointing sophomore season. That's why True Detective season 3 took time to develop.

It wasn't until a year after True Detective season 2 premiered that HBO confirmed plans to make True Detective season 3. Given that True Detective season 3 is considerably better than its predecessor, it would make sense for HBO to take its time to announce True Detective season 4. If it were to happen, though, the best case scenario would be for fans to expect an announcement to the TCA summer press tour, which is where HBO has made announcements before about past and upcoming shows.

True Detective Season 4 Release Date

True Detective Season 3 Peephole

Since True Detective hasn't been renewed yet, there's currently no True Detective season 4 release date. Audiences shouldn't expect to see True Detective season 4 release by this time next year - in January/February 2020 - but it could very well release by early 2021. Considering how good True Detective season 3 was, HBO wouldn't want to jump the gun with True Detective season 4. Giving Pizzolatto breathing room to create a new story that's worthy of being told is the most important thing in continuing this series.

True Detective Season 4 Story

True Detective season 3 town meeting

If it happens, True Detective season 4 would presumably be another anthology story that takes place across multiple time periods. It's Pizzolatto's bread and butter, and it's worked out quite well so far. However, one thing fans have wanted to see since 2014 is the return of Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson. True Detective season 4 could potentially be a sequel to season 1, but it's improbable. Instead, what's more likely is that fans will see True Detective season 4 continue to expand upon the story of the child kidnapping ring. But we'll just have to wait and see what happens.

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