As a big fan of television series, no matter how many of them I have on my plate, I was excited to start off with a new crime show that was set to have one case in terms of the entire series. That of course changed when the final episode of season 2 revealed the killer but I guess they are planning to take on a whole new case when they decide to continue but this post is going to focus on the season 1 and 2: the Rosie Larsen case.
The Killing is a show actually created in Denmark, which won a BAFTA in the international category. Its U.S version was developed by Veena Sud and produced by Fox for this channel called AMC. I don’t know if this is all relevant but the fact that it is AMC makes it a bit interesting because the channel is focusing on movies rather than original series, The Killing, The Walking Dead and, still on my must-watch list, Breaking Bad, serve as proof that when they do make a series, they make it amazing.
Two main cast member Mireille Enos and Joel Kinnaman portray two homicide detectives, Sarah Linden and Stephen Holder. Their partnership starts off when Linden is supposed to leave the department and move to another city but decides to take on one last case with her replacement Holder. Those two are the center of the series when it comes to the killing of Rosie Larsen but there are two other story lines that make things interesting. First is the family of the dead girl, including the mom (Michelle Forbes), dad (Brent Sexton), two of their sons and the aunt (Jamie Anne Allman). The second group of people who play an influential role is the politics team including the major candidate Darren Richmond (Billy Campbell) and his two campaign managers (Kristin Lehman, Eric Ladin).
Despite the fact that most of these listed actor names were completely unknown for me, except couple of familiar faces, the cast was perfection. It wasn’t licked and nicked into this beautiful and flawless combination of characters but it had some depth. Especially when it comes to Mireille Enos who basically wore no make-up the entire time, had the same manly and unflattering cardigan throughout the two seasons and wasn’t afraid to look ugly-beautiful. She was so believable because of it, and I loved the fact she didn’t wear boots with heels (which seems to be the trend in any other show where female detectives despite the fact that they have long working days wear heels). I bow before Michelle Forbes and Brent Sexton as well, I think both of them had such important roles and I still remember their reactions when they found out about Rosie – heartbreaking and yet, such a beautiful moment when it comes down to acting and directing.
The characters and their depth all adds to the visuals of The Killing which is dark, colorless and especially in the first season, very rainy. In case one’s interested, there is a video explaining some of the cinematography and camera movements, which I personally always find interesting. The way meaning, feelings and a certain mood is created to the show. It all comes down to the element of reality and feeling the story on a different level, and since the series progresses day-by-day (one episode is equivalent to one day), everything is slowed down to a speed that almost looks natural. The first season was by far my favorite and definitely better than the second just because the first had so much rawness and feelings to its characters. By the second season, the story was starting to slow down in all ways possible and there was less to attach yourself to. The family matters, the suspects – it all just waited for the final two episodes but there still were moments, don’t get me wrong, season 2 was good but the impact the first season had cooled down and spiked only when the killer was finally revealed.
If you plan to watch the show, be aware, major spoiler of the killer is ahead, skip to a safe paragraph!
I’m going to skip all that stuff about the suspects, the family drama of the Larsen’s and their secrets, the issues Linden had with her son and his father, not to mention her fiancé and Holder’s past which included an addiction. It’s going to be rather pointless for those who have actually seen this show and I bet all those people are actually thinking about this killer who literally gave the last push to the car that held Rosie Larsen in the trunk, still alive.
The whole show, at least the first season, held a certain note that made me think that somebody in the politics team was the killer for sure. It was almost true, as one of Richmond’s right hands, Jamie Wright (Ladin), was the one who chased her in the woods and shoved her into the car. He is in the middle of telling the entire story to Richmond but is killed by Holder because he refuses to put down the gun, we assume that this is it but Linden still has her doubts. Almost at the end, when she and Holder go to deliver the news to the Larsens, another bomb is dropped onto us and the aunt (Allman) confesses that she was the one who pushed the car into the river unaware that she was killing her niece. Shocking? Well, quite a bit, but as I said, the second season didn’t have such an impact and for me, the final curtain came as an obvious ending rather than an omg-did-that-just-happen revelation. I’m partly thinking that the decision to stretch the show (which in its original form only had one season) into such an extent was a mistake because they weren’t able to deliver by the end. I wanted more, or, something else but I guess I had just set my hopes way too high and disliked the aunt anyway.
As far as the visuals and the whole Linden/Holder chemistry, it was all there throughout the series and the entire time I was rooting for the Larsen family because they seemed so perfect in their imperfections and faults. Sadly, the show didn’t have time to show the after-match of how the news of the actual killer settled in but they did get a videotape of Rosie’s last project that was far fetched. Honestly, such an ending, felt a bit too much considering that it would have served more effectively if it had just been a movie rather than a message of love. Well, I guess they wanted to give the family something extremely good but it would have been sadder if it wasn’t that obvious.
Now, as the two seasons are finished and the Rosie Larsen’s case is closed, it comes to question where the show is going on next? One possibility is to follow the same characters (Linden and Holder) investigating another murder and have a whole new family to center the drama, in addition to the suspects of course. Could work as long as they stick to their elements which are definitely the cinematography and intrigue but I would expect a lot out of its season 3 if they do go through with it and they have until the end of the year to decide. As far as the rumors go, it is obvious that season 2 wasn’t as successful as the first (just like I mentioned, it was uneventful and had less impact) which might indicate an end to the Linden and Holder relationship (friends, co-workers, borther-sister kind of chemistry) I am going to miss so much. Well, all I can do is wait and hope.