How to Throw a ‘True Detective’ Season Finale Watch Party

Tonight is the season finale of HBO’s True Detective, which I am very excited about. The anticipation is building and theories are being thrown around like wildfire on Reddit. It’s a great time to be watching TV in the United States of America and really internationally because, you know, HBO GO and stuff. Anyway, I decided that it’s only appropriate to host a watch party.

Before you start planning your own, let me just warn you that it’s really easy to get carried away with a theme like True Detective. So before you go hire an actor to play a victim in antlers or Reverend Tuttle, check out some of the ideas below that are sure to make you and your guests feel like they’re in Carcosa.

Lone Star Tall Boys

I think we all know this beer is a must. Lone Star Beer has gone beyond product placement in True Detective. It’s really become a character in a way and is especially important during the scenes where Rustin Cohle is being interviewed. After your guests enjoy their refreshments, you can hand out knives for them to create those little men that Rust makes. Drinking and crafts are always a great combination.

Pretzel Rod Devil catchers

You know, the little tent sculptures made out of sticks that symbolize Carcosa. Take 4 or 5 pretzel rods and form them into tent shapes, fastening them together with thin strips of Pillsbury crescent roll dough. Bake in a 375 degree oven for about 10 to 12 minutes.

King Cake

They celebrate Mardi Gras, they’re yellow – like the yellow king – and obviously round, which is the most important theme for the party because as everyone knows time is a flat circle. Plus, if you want to get extra creepy, you can hide the little baby that comes with the cake and whoever finds it is the Yellow King.


Cook up a pot. In rural areas of Louisiana, like much of the settings in True Detective, communities have been known to celebrate Courir de Mardi Gras on Fat Tuesday. Men on horseback wearing masks go farm to farm collecting the ingredients to make gumbo- chicken, sausage rice etc. Gumbo will be a perfect meal to serve to make you feel like your guests feel like they’re down south. You can even have each of your guests bring one of the ingredients. Gumbo is also a favorite of the show’s star Matthew McConaughey, which he mentioned during his Oscars acceptance speech.


Provide guests with brown and yellow construction paper. Some guests can make antler and others can crown themselves the Yellow King. I think you’ll really find your friends true personalities come out with this project, so pay close attention to the choices people make.

Black Star Brownies

Through out the season of True Detective, there are many references to black stars rising. The references seem to come from part of a play called The King in Yellow

Along the shore the cloud waves break,

The twin suns sink behind the lake,

The shadows lengthen

In Carcosa.

Strange is the night where black stars rise,

And strange moons circle through the skies,

But stranger still is

Lost Carcosa.

Take a cookie cutter in the shape of a star and cut out some delicious shapes.


This is a key element to any viewing element. Feel free to go crazy with this symbol in celebration of time being a flat circle, the Golden Ratio and the victims in the show. You can form a dip into the shape of a spiral, draw homemade tattoos, and create homemade coasters for people’s drinks.

Big Hug Mug

In all of the scenes in which we see Rustin Cohle being questioned, he is using a Big Hug Mug as an ash tray. While getting these mugs for everyone at your party would be amazing, that’s gonna get a little pricey. Second option, write “Big Hug Mug” in red bubble letters on the front of white paper cups- enough for each guest. Plus easy clean up.


In honor of “the green-eared spaghetti monster”, make a big pot of spaghetti. You can decorate the dish with green vegetables to make it look like the drawing of our favorite southern suspect that Rust has hung up in his storage space/office.

Light of the Way sign

The school started by the Tuttles seems to be at the heart of the entire Dora Lange case. Several characters on the show thus far seem to have been in the same class. Take a look at this class photo. It’d be fun to take a black and white class photo with your guests and make a “Light of the Way” sign for someone to hold in the front row. Don’t forget, shortest in the front, sitting cross legged, tallest in the back.

Neon glow stick cross

Connect glow sticks to create a neon cross for your wall, just like the one in Reverend Tuttle’s office. It is sure to set the mood for the event. Plus there are all sorts of theories about it that are worth reading.

Post photos of your watch party on Instagram with #timeisaflatcircle and let us know if you have any other ideas below!

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