AMC’s ‘The Killing’ is one of those high concept shows that
is slow on action and big on character development.
I was a big fan of that formula in the first season – but not
so much in the second season.
When AMC announced that ‘The Killing’ wouldn’t be coming
back for a third season, I wasn’t all that surprised.
While the central mystery – who killed Rosie Larsen – was twisty
and interesting during the first season, the slow format faltered in the second
The mixture of tortured heroes, ambiguous bad guys and
questionable morals was an interesting character sketch early on. I was
interested in seeing where the story went – and more importantly, why we were
being led in the direction we were being led in.
Then ‘The Killing’ made its fatal mistake.
Fans were led to believe that we would find out who killed
Rosie Larsen during the finale of the first
season. That didn’t happen, though –
and fans were understandably outraged.
Then, show runner Veena Sud added gas to the fire when she
essentially told fans to just “get over it.” Just a tip, that’s not the way to
endear yourself to vocal fans.
The second season of ‘The Killing’ saw a drastic decrease in
viewership – and even though the killer was revealed in the final episode, the
revelation fell flat after so much build-up. It wasn’t what fans wanted – or expected.
It felt like an after thought more than anything else.
I can’t deny that I was surprised when I heard that ‘The
Killing’ had miraculously staved off execution a few months ago.
This go around, show runners promise that the current
mystery will be solved in one season – and the only returning cast members are
Mireille Enos (Sarah Linden) and Joel Kinnaman (Stephen Holder).
This season’s story starts out about a year after the events
of season two, with Sarah Linden retired from the police force and Holder
having to ask his former partner for help in a missing girls case that ties to
a case from her past.
I’m hopeful that ‘The Killing’ can recapture some of that
first season magic that made it must-watch television – but I’m a little leery.
Kinnaman and Enos have terrific chemistry – and I’m really
excited about the addition of Peter
Sarsgaard as a death row inmate that Linden
put away – and who may be innocent after all.
I like the gritty atmosphere of ‘The Killing’ a great deal –
and I’ve been a fan of Enos since she portrayed a set of twins on ‘Big Love’ –
but ‘The Killing’ is going to have to start out strong and bring back a lot of
the fans it lost in the second season if it wants to survive for another grisly go around.
I’m definitely up to giving it a shot, though.
AMC’s two-hour premiere of ‘The Killing’ debuts Sunday
What do you think? Are you going to tune in for the third
season of ‘The Killing’?