The First 'True Detective' Season 3 Trailer Is Full of Memories and Old-Age Makeup

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True Detective has one of the most uneasy track records on TV. First, everyone got obsessed with the McConaughey-isms of the first season -- until the ending was less satisfying than perhaps hoped. The second -- featuring Rachel McAdams and Colin Farrell -- was much-hyped, and then landed with a thud. But now polarizing creator Nic Pizzolatto is back with another try. Because, you know, time is a flat circle, third time's the charm, or something or other. 

HBO dropped the first trailer for the third season along with the Sharp Objects finale last night. In it, we see Oscar-winner Mahershala Ali (Juan in Moonlight) wearing various stages of old-age makeup, expounding on how he's attempted to block out memories from the past -- memories that are inevitably going to come back to haunt him. "My whole brain's a bunch of missing pieces," he says. It's not exactly clear what case he's investigating just yet. At one point, we see the flash of a ransom note that says: "Julie is in a good place and safe the children shud..." Anyway, the show continues to boast an incredible level of acting talent. In addition to Ali, the cast includes Carmen Ejogo (Selma), Scoot McNairy (Argo), Mamie Gummer (The Good Wife, Meryl Streep's daughter), and Stephen Dorff (Blade (!)). 

Before you get too overwhelmed with excitement, remember: there's already been turmoil behind the scenes. Green Room director Jeremy Saulnier left the show after two episodes, reporting differences with Pizzolatto. The latter stepped in to finish up the season alongside Daniel Sackheim, former House and two-season The Americans producer. So this could be a disaster. Or it could be great. We'll reserve our judgment until it drops on HBO in January 2019. 

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Esther Zuckerman is a senior entertainment writer at Thrillist. Follow her on Twitter @ezwrites