latest on decider

Pixar Exec Says ‘Toy Story’ Origin Theory Is 'Fake News'

Pixar Exec Says ‘Toy Story’ Origin Theory Is 'Fake News'

How Danny DeVito’s Past Roles Prepared Him For ‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’

How Danny DeVito’s Past Roles Prepared Him For ‘It’s Always Sunny in...

Who's In 'Power' Now? What You Need To Know Before Diving Into The Super Intense Season 4

Who's In 'Power' Now? What You Need To Know Before Diving Into The Super...

‘Rick and Morty’ Co-Creator Reassures Fans That Season 3 Is In The Works

‘Rick and Morty’ Co-Creator Reassures Fans That Season 3 Is In The...

‘Girlboss’ Canceled At Netflix After One Season

‘Girlboss’ Canceled At Netflix After One Season

'Transformers: The Last Knight’ Rakes in $37.5 Million in Just Three Days

'Transformers: The Last Knight’ Rakes in $37.5 Million in Just Three Days

‘Orange Is the New Black’ Hacker The Dark Overlord Banished From Twitter

‘Orange Is the New Black’ Hacker The Dark Overlord Banished From...

‘Fear The Walking Dead’ Is Just As Good As The Original Series

‘Fear The Walking Dead’ Is Just As Good As The Original Series

My First Time... Watching 'Spaceballs'

My First Time... Watching 'Spaceballs'

Stephen Colbert Toasts Russia, Announces Presidential Bid On Russian TV

Stephen Colbert Toasts Russia, Announces Presidential Bid On Russian TV

'Playing House' Premiere Displays Emma and Maggie's Defensive Side: Recap

'Playing House' Premiere Displays Emma and Maggie's Defensive Side: Recap

Top 10 Sexiest, Dirtiest & Steamiest Movies on Netflix Right Now

Top 10 Sexiest, Dirtiest & Steamiest Movies on Netflix Right Now

Last Night’s Bathtub Scene Captured Everything Great and Confusing About ‘Fargo’

Where to Stream

Fargo

I won’t lie. I was worried about this new season of Fargo. FX has had such an impressive run with the series, it seemed like a strong third season would be too much to ask for. Add in the fact that the success of this season rests almost completely on one actor’s shoulders and Season 3 is set in the technologically savvy year of 2010, and it seemed possible that 2017 could have brought a dip in quality to one of TV’s best shows. However, one scene in “The Law of Vacant Places” quelled all of my fears — that bathtub scene between Ewan McGregor and Mary Elizabeth Winstead. Spoilers ahead.

The scene in question is relatively short, lasting a little over six minutes, but it’s one packed with intimacy, vulnerability, humor, and of course, crime. Surrounded by candles and glued to their phones, the scene starts with a surprisingly sexual moment between Ray Stussy (Ewan McGregor) and Nikki Swango (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) for this typically chaste show. The duo’s victorious soak in the tub should be romantic but is instead odd and endearing, two qualities this Season 3 couple bleeds. However, while they’re in the middle of reveling in their bridge victory, the stoner Ray hired to steal his brother’s stamp (Scoot McNairy) barges in. True to Fargo form, everyone is mildly surprised by the bathroom nudity, but no one does anything to make things less uncomfortable.

From its odd comedic timing to the long-winded way Ray and Maurice talk around the crime without realizing they’re discussing two very different things, it’s perfect Fargo — just a well-timed, awkward mess. Winstead’s delivery of the line “Are you saying that he’s not a man or he’s not in my bathroom?” is especially applause-worthy. But the real power of the scene comes from how quickly and effortlessly it’s able to switch from something silly and embarrassing to a dramatic game changer that alters the course of the entire season.

It’s while his girlfriend is in the bathtub that Ray realizes the blood of an innocent man is on his hands as well as when the parole officer realizes his stoner charge may be more violent than he originally thought. It’s also the moment when we see exactly why McGregor had to gain weight for the role. However most importantly, this is the scene when we start to see how intelligent Nikki Swango is. As Lester Nygaard (Martin Freeman), Molly Solverson (Allison Tolman), and Peggy Blumquist (Kirsten Dunst) have taught us, intelligence is always something worth paying close attention to in Fargo. It’s only Nikki’s spur-of-the-moment decision to distract Maurice with her naked body that saves them from being shot. Likewise, a few minutes later, it’s her well-timed use of an air conditioner that eliminates Maurice from their lives permanently. The scene plays with the disturbing power that comes from Nikki’s intelligence all while placing our heroes in the middle of a life-altering crime and showing off Ewan McGregor’s buns.

GIF: FX

This scene, with its quick but believable tone changes and snappy, revealing dialogue, should go down as one of the show’s best. I have absolutely no idea what’s in store for anyone in Season 3 of Fargo. However, as long as the brilliantly impulsive Nikki and the sad underdog Ray are leading the drama, I can’t imagine this season will be anything other than great.

New episodes of Fargo Season 3 premiere on FX and FXNOW Wednesday at 10 p.m. ET.

Stream Fargo, "The Law of Vacant Places" on FXNOW

Decider

Get the Newsletter.

Sign up for news, stories, offers, and more, all from Decider's Webby Award nominated newsletter.

By clicking above you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

X