True Detective (2014– )
Detective Rust Cohle: I'd consider myself a realist, all right? But in philosophical terms I'm what's called a pessimist... I think human consciousness is a tragic misstep in evolution. We became too self-aware. Nature created an aspect of nature separate from itself. We are creatures that should not exist by natural law... We are things that labor under the illusion of having a self, that accretion of sensory experience and feelings, programmed with total assurance that we are each somebody, when in fact everybody's nobody... I think the honorable thing for our species to do is to deny our programming. Stop reproducing, walk hand in hand into extinction; one last midnight, brothers and sisters opting out of a raw deal.
Detective Rust Cohle: Life's barely long enough to get good at one thing. So be careful what you get good at.
Detective Rust Cohle: If the only thing keeping a person decent is the expectation of divine reward, then, brother, that person is a piece of shit - and I'd like to get as many of them out in the open as possible.
Detective Rust Cohle: This... This is what I'm talking about. This is what I mean when I'm talkin' about time, and death, and futility. All right, there are broader ideas at work, mainly what is owed between us as a society for our mutual illusions. Fourteen straight hours of staring at DB's, these are the things ya think of. You ever done that? You look in their eyes, even in a picture, doesn't matter if they're dead or alive, you can still read 'em. You know what you see? They welcomed it... Not at first, but... right there in the last instant. It's an unmistakable relief. See, cause they were afraid, and now they saw for the very first time how easy it was to just... let go. Yeah, they saw, in that last nanosecond, they saw... what they were. You, yourself, this whole big drama, it was never more than a jerry-rig of presumption and dumb will, and you could just let go. To finally know that you didn't have to hold on so tight. To realize that all your life - you know, all your love, all your hate, all your memories, all your pain - it was all the same thing. It was all the same dream, a dream that you had inside a locked room, a dream about being a person. And like a lot of dreams, there's a monster at the end of it.
Detective Rust Cohle: [looking at the night sky] Once there was only dark. If you ask me, the light's winning.
Detective Marty Hart: Do you wonder ever if you're a bad man?
Detective Rust Cohle: No. I don't wonder, Marty. World needs bad men. We keep the other bad men from the door.
Detective Rust Cohle: There is no such thing as forgiveness. People just have short memories.
Detective Rust Cohle: I can't say the job made me this way. More like me being this way made me right for the job. I used to think about it more, but you reach a certain age you know who you are. Now I live in a little room, out in the country behind a bar, work four nights a week, and in between I drink. And there ain't nobody there to stop me. I know who I am. And after all these years, there's a victory in that.
Detective Marty Hart: Let's make the car a place of silent reflection from now on.
Detective Ray Velcoro: Pain is inexhaustible. It's only people that get exhausted.
Detective Ray Velcoro: If you ever bully or hurt anybody again, I'll come back and butt fuck your father with your mom's headless corpse on this goddamn lawn.
Detective Ray Velcoro: Sometimes a good beating provokes personal growth.
Frank Semyon: Never do anything out of hunger. Even eating.
Detective Ani Bezzerides: Maybe, and this is just a thought, maybe you were put on this earth for more than fucking.
Vera Machiado: Everything is fucking.
Detective Ray Velcoro: My powers of influence are so meager in this sublunar world of ours, I try to limit the people I can disappoint. And I make sure to know the difference between my obligations and somebody else's.