'Fargo' Composer Jeff Russo Describes Finale as 'Complete Mayhem,' Notes Favorite Scenes
'Fargo' Composer Jeff Russo Describes Finale as 'Complete Mayhem,' Notes Favorite Scenes
Morgan Glennon
Morgan Glennon
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
The Fargo season finale is right around the corner, dontchaknow, and things are getting more bloody and chaotic than ever.

Starring Billy Bob Thornton and Martin Freeman, the FX series has become a surprisingly great adaptation of the Coen Brothers' 1996 classic. The black comedy has the benefit of a laundry list of talented actors, including Colin Hanks, Kate Walsh, Bob Odenkirk, and Oliver Platt. The series introduced us to Allison Tolman, who is stealing scenes all over the place as Molly, the only competent police officer around for miles. 

The first season is wrapping up with a 90-minute finale, where Lester and Lorne Malvo's battle is sure to claim a few more casualties, cause more chaos, and probably be both oddly affecting and darkly hilarious. 


Before the finale, BuddyTV was lucky enough to talk to Jeff Russo, the musical mastermind who created the sound of the show. Check out the interview below to find out how Russo walked the tightrope between humor and drama, how influenced he was by the original movie, and his favorite musical moments: 

Obviously you can't give much away, but what should viewers be prepared for in the finale? 

Something totally unexpected! Oh ya, and complete mayhem! 

What attracted you to the series? 

Working with creator/showrunner Noah Hawley is so great, so that is probably the first thing. The story, the script... This was a really tall task and I love a challenge! 

What were your inspirations for creating the sound of the show?

Noah Hawley gave me a few descriptors when we first started talking about the show: "Cold and lonesome." We also talked about the music's emotional impact and using the silence as a way to draw out tension. 

Because we are based in the world that the Coen Brothers created, I tried to live inside of that while keeping our own identity. That tall task was also an inspiration. 

How influenced were you by the original movie? 

By trying to stay inside that world, I would say a bit influenced, but we really did try to create our own identity. The movie is so iconic, making it imperative to pay homage without trying to be it.

Fargo is such an interesting mix of real darkness and comedy. How did you strike that balance when composing for the show?

I try to not play the comedy with music. Especially if there is music playing drama in the same scene. That can muddy the waters.


What's been your favorite scene or favorite moment to score so far?

Two scenes that stand out are: 

1) When Stavros Milos finds the briefcase full of money. (It's such a pivotal scene for the viewer who is also a fan of the movie!)

2)  When Lester sees Malvo a year later at the bar in Las Vegas. (It's a bit of a turning point for Lester in his approach.)

Can't wait until the season finale? You betcha it's going to be one you're not going to want to miss. Check out the preview for our final taste of Fargo below: 


What's been your favorite Fargo moment? Sound off in the comments!

Fargo airs Tuesdays at 10pm on FX.

(Video courtesy of FX, Photo by Elisa Rice) 

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