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The Killing

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Ummmm, thank you for this. I just got done binge-watching all 4 seasons and I feel like Stephanie Green resides in my brain. I agree with everything she wrote. I LOVED seasons one and two. Loved, loved, loved. I couldn't get through them fast enough. The show was twisty, while still being believable. I don't want to sound arrogant, but I usually figure things out when watching/reading mysteries and I really appreciate being shocked. Early on, this show shocked me plenty. And everything about it - the acting, the writing, the cinematography was so so good. 

 

Season three was pretty good too, not as good, but still compelling. Then we have season four. Thunk. It was like someone just dropped an anvil on the entire thing. Awful. Everything was so sloppy and out of character. Kyle snapping and killing the mom and dad, maybe I could see that. If he had been at home, and something happened. But the kids taunted him so much that he "snapped", but then thought out a plan and drove all the way out there and coldly killed them all, including his baby sister who he loved? Not buying it. And yea, his partially guilty classmates doing everything they could to make him remember what happened - made NO sense at all!

 

Linden and Holder getting together in the end was so cheap and cliche that I felt my eyes rolling out of my head. I really loved both of those characters (until this season, in which they were constantly assholes in need of a good smacking), but not together. Why oh why do men and women always have to "end up" together? Why can't they just be friends? It's beyond annoying and I thought this show was better than that. 

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I just binge watched this entire show in a week, because it really got a hold of me once I started.

 

I'd heard about the big uproar after the season 1 finale so I knew some things going in, but I never thought I'd enjoy it as much as I have. Partly because I had some expectations, due to reading random reviews over the years, of it being kind of depressing, but I never felt it. The moody atmosphere really drew me in.

I thought the ending would be something like what SoA did, so I was surprised when it ended on such a hopeful note. And every time I'm surprised, I count that as a good thing.

 

I agree with FurryFury that the hints of, well, something between Linden and Holder were always there. They just didn't linger on those moments, so they were easier to dismiss.

 

My favourite part of the finale? Holder and his daughter. I had to rewind that scene because it was too cute. And now I want some cupcakes too.

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I just finished the 2nd season really enjoyed it, but I was confused how Rosie got the key for the 10th floor of wapi casino it seems like an odd thing for her to have. Anyone know how she got it? I feel like i missed a scene or something

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Just from being a maid and server at the casino, she probably had access to keys to the 10th floor and no one cared at that point since it wasn't yet a crime scene.

 

I just watched the entire series in a couple of days, and while I did over all like it, I think it stopped at a good point.  I went from thinking it was great, to thinking the Rosie murder was dragging (I have no idea how people kept watching while it aired live) to being more disappointed in Seasons 3 and 4.  It would have been nice if some of the elements and characters from Season 1 & 2 like the Native Americans/Mayor/Crime family also had some part in later murders to keep the Twin Peaks similarities.  The resolutions to the Season 3 and 4 murders were pretty WTF, and I had a hard time even caring if Linden and Holder were sent to jail after they proved to be such idiots.

 

I'll miss Linden's funny/grumpy way of walking though.

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Watching season 3 now because I forgot most of it when I watched the original airings.

 

So that I could watch S4 and finish it.

 

Had to watch parts of seasons 1 and 2 to remind myself how that case ended t oo.

 

My recollection when I watched this series on AMC was that there was so much time given to the Larson family, as if the case itself wasn't depressing enough, you were drowned in their mourning.  The scenes weren't bad but it was also annoying at times because just when the investigation plot was gaining momentum, they seemed to interject the Larsons or the politicians.

 

Felt similar about the prison scenes too, that as great as the Sarsgard's performance was, they just added to the overwhelming lugubrious atmosphere.

 

You hoped Seattle got some sunshine and the people up there laughed sometimes.  Of course they do but The Killing never showed it.

 

Now though, binge watching every ep. of season 3, it's more tolerable.

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OK, I binged on season 4 just now, after going back to season 3 because I had forgotten how that unfolded.

 

I don't buy the hazing or Kyle murdering or the Colonel having her secret son be at her school, or the student who messed around with Kyle's fake mother being involved in the conspiracy.  Too many coincidences there and the overall crime isn't plausible.

 

But the point of the case is to show Linden and Holder trying to cope with their crime and ultimately, Linden comes to identify herself with Kyle -- they both were discarded by their parents, unwanted.  So of course when he confesses, she confesses as well.

 

I didn't want them going to prison but I suspected there would be an overwhelming desire to wrap things up with the usual Hollywood happy ending.  

 

I guess the idea is that these two were fucked up people to begin with, got involved with intensely stressful situations together, which fucked them both up and years later, they leave the job, are both in a better place, at peace with the world, and have found each other so they can ride off to the sunset, if Seattle has sunsets.

 

Over the course of the series, the highest praise were for the two main characters, their acting, while the plots and the way seasons 1 and 2 unfolded came under heavy criticism.  So there may have been this impulse to bring these two characters, who were so beloved by viewers, together.

 

But them coming together makes sense from a codependency POV.  It's doubtful Sarah self-healed by being on the road for a few years.  Also, Holder is shown as the best father ever in that short scene and helping other addicts now as a therapist.  But he's divorced so he can't be some paragon either.  Or are they trying to say he was inevitably going to end up with this true love so of course he had to split from his baby mama?

 

Sarah initially rejects Holder's requests to stay.  Then she goes for a drive, sees the Seattle skyline, which had become a "city of death" to her and decides to go back?

 

Realistically, these two get together and are at each others throats and eventually part.  More likely, they get together when they're in the pressure cooker, trying to solve those high-profile cases and they're enveloped in the madness.  Because it's a codependency and Holder for one is prone to addictive behavior when stressed.

 

It's doubtful he'd last longer with Sarah than Caroline, who doesn't do batshit crazy.

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I started binge watching The Killing a couple of weeks ago, and I was shocked to find "Fuck you, The Killing!" a frequent response in the comments section of each episode review on A.V. Club.  I had no idea there were so many folks who felt betrayed by this show.  I dunno, I'm almost finishing S3, and I've actually rather enjoyed it.  There is much to like -- the acting by Enos, Kinnaman, Sexton, Taylor-Klaus, and Sarsgaard, the moodiness, the cinematography, the characterization.  While a few things irritated me (dumb moves by smart characters to serve the plot, repeated false-fingerings), they did not overwhelm the story.  I wonder if the series might have been more enjoyable to most if binge watched?

Edited by DesertCyclist
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I enjoyed last season mainly because of Peter Sarsgaard's excellent acting and the actress who played Bullet, but so far this season's mystery feels pretty underwhelming. The military superintendent is rather annoying and I don't much like the actor who plays the son who may or may not have killed his family either. At the same time, I wish Holder and Linden would have just not tried to keep Skinner's death a secret since he is a serial killer and confessed to it, so Linden is justified in saying she was trying to apprehend him but he resisted so she shot him.

Edited by Mattipoo

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I am still not really liking this season, mainly because the "mystery" feels kind boring. The headmistress of the military school is also really annoying and I keep wishing Linden will slap her in the face. LOL love Lincoln getting beaten up by the head cadet (don't know his name) who was protecting Kyle. The neighbor is definitely a red herring although he is probably a creep who also needs to be locked up ASAP. Yeah, like many others, I am only tuning in for Holder's witty one-liners and waiting to see how it all ends for him and Linden.

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The resolution of the murder mystery was boring, but the show redeemed itself during the last scene with Linden and Holder. Loved her coming back to see him and telling him that home to her was the two of them in her car driving around and smoking cigarettes. Also loved that she left and then came back at the end. Such a sweet, simple ending and probably one of the best series finales for me in recent memory. Despite the bad detective work and endless red herrings especially during the Rosie Larson seasons, I enjoyed the show a lot overall. Mirelle Enos and Joel Kinnaman are amazing actors and hopefully I will see them starring in more TV shows and movies in the future.

Edited by Mattipoo

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I thought this season was going to be the best yet with an awesome plot twist that would leave me thinking *awwwww shiiiiiiiiit* but alas, it was as expected. Still don't know why Kyle killed his whole family? Peers randomly get you to wank over a pic of your mum and tell you to kill them so to do? Wtf? I felt as though they needed 12 episodes to do this justice. It was just rushed and really disappointing.

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Well.  Hubby and I binge-watched this show in about three weeks' time, got finished around 1 am last night.

The switch to 'Netflix original' kind of edgy for S4 was extremely jarring to us, and not in a good way.  The gratuitous F-bombs made me wince, and the hazing scene with the mom/son photos almost had me running to the bathroom to puke.  At one point I had to just mute it and look away and tell hubby to let me know when that part was over.  But the worst part is, the show managed to make me hate with borderline rage a character I had come to love.  I was seeing red during the scenes with Holder yelling at his sister and nephew.  Although, it made it easier to see why Sis refused to let "Little Man" see Holder at all while he was using.  He made for a nasty and cruel addict and bravo to her for having the cojones to cut him out of their lives.

The only thing that kept us watching S4 was the fact that it was only 6 episodes long.  Any longer and we probably would have bailed, or at least hubby would have.  I'm one to follow things through until the bitter, bitter end.

Since this is the all-episodes, all-seasons thread I'll comment on what I liked/didn't like from everything.

S1/2 - really loved Mr. Larson, even with his background as a mob lackey.  He was just such a good person.  The entire Rosie Larson storyline broke my heart.  I'm glad in the end we realized Rosie wasn't a prostitute/runaway/I-hate-my-entire-family kind of girl after all.  The political storyline kind of dragged, but I can see where it was necessary.  I was SHOCKED to realize that Terry was the one who had pushed the car into the lake.  Just...wow.

Linden is a (sometimes) beautiful tragedy, and it was fun to see Holder bring out something other than self-destruction in her.  All the 1-900-Linden cracks and other such things.  I loved Holder.  I remember remarking to hubby that Holder is just so ridiculous but I love every minute of it.  He was a breath of fresh air.

S3 - I was invested in Seeward all the way up until the very end.  By the end it was pretty obvious IMO that Seeward sacrificed himself to save his son, knowing if it ever came out who Adrian really saw that night he would be in danger the rest of his life, and damn.  Heavy storyline, there.

Knowing what we know by the end of S3/early S4, it's almost mind-boggling to really understand that Skinner was the one who had killed Patricia Seeward,  you know?  Unfortunate for him that he got paired with Linden on the Seeward case.  She's not really that great of a detective IMO, but one thing she has going for her is she just never gives up. Unlike so many others, she's not satisfied with catching A bad guy, it has to be THE bad guy.  And I don't even think that necessarily comes from a place of needing to see justice done, it's more like she just has to be RIGHT.  It's an interesting character flaw, IMO, which sometimes pays out and sometimes doesn't.

I shudder to think of how many girls Skinner has really killed.  There was, what, 17 from the first dumping grounds and 10 from the lake?  And then he told Linden there were many more dumping grounds.  Gak.  By the end it wasn't even about "rescuing" (in his sick way) those girls.  He didn't even remember Kallie's name.  She was just another junkie street kid to him.  He wasn't trying to save her.  He just killed her because that's what he does.  Horrible, sick, twisted POS.

I wasn't a Linden/Holder 'shipper, although I admit the series end scene made me tear up (mostly because Holder's heart eyes were making me all ooey-gooey) but I can see why they would gravitate toward a relationship.  Holder desperately needed someone to believe he was a good person underneath it all, and Linden desperately needed someone who wouldn't walk out on her no matter how nasty and terrible she was to them.  In that way, they were good for each other.  I mean, they were a terrible mess waiting to happen, but at the same time not.  Very complicated.

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Although Seasons 1 and 2 of The Killing dragged, I enjoyed Season 3, except for the finale. Season 4 could've been good had Season 3 ended as it should with the capture of the actual Pied Piper. If you want 3 seasons of great tv, watch the original Danish Forbrydelsen (on which the first two seasons of The Killing were somewhat loosely based). Each season of Forbrydelsen stands alone nicely with no contrived happy ending.

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I just mainlined this and loved the whole damn thing. I've read many complaints that the series finale felt contrived, and strongly disagree--not because I'm a romantic, but because I believe that ending was, in fact, earned. This show delivered an exceptional platonic pairing with Linden and Holder, but I don't consider it a betrayal to see them wind up together because all the elements to make that happen were there throughout each season. The love of my life (although not the person I ended up marrying and divorcing, so there you go . . .) was someone who was first a classmate, then a friend, then my best friend, and then more. Maybe it's the effect of bingeing, but the way this relationship wove itself from a couple of funky, loose threads into an incredible tapestry of shared history--some great and some horrific--completely worked for me. I loved watching them work together, but I'd also have happily been there for a hundred hours of "Oh snap, Linden!" in the car, with the cigarettes. There was fighting and making up; there was having each other's backs, and then there was crippling, shattering doubt--and I was there for all of it, painful as it was. I truly believe that people can be "home" for other people. These two got each other in the deepest way and they both needed home and found it in each other. Frankly, there was so much tragedy in this show (and Peter Skarsgaard, you were fucking amazing, btw) and so much agony for its profoundly fallible characters, that an ending that kept them apart--and hurt by each other--would have pretty much killed me. Having ridden the roller coaster ride with them and seen that they could survive apart, to me it just felt right to see them both on solid ground--together--at last.

Edited by spaceghostess
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I live in Seattle, which is not at all as rainy as it's portrayed in this, and I don't understand how Linden's lips got so chapped. I never wear gloss or lipstick, and my lips are fine. :-)

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I've watched the entire series over the last 3 weeks or so and overall I liked almost all of it. I agree that neither Linden nor Holder were especially great detectives, but they were not content to make an arrest just for the sake of closing out a case and instead were driven to find the real culprit. But it reminded me of what various real detectives have said about police work; usually it's working the case methodically that eventually solves it, not some sudden flash of brilliant deductive reasoning.  There were a few things during the show where I kept thinking something someone did was really stupid or where my reaction to a character or situation was 180 degrees from what I thought the director intended. Example of stupidity on an ongoing way: Linden really needed to quit showing up at someone's house or business demanding to search it for evidence of whatever, only to be told no way without a warrant, and then going to get a warrant, which would be delayed long enough that anybody with half a brain would have time to remove all evidence from the premises. FFS, quit tipping off people you want to search their property. Go get the damn search warrant first, and surprise them.

In S1-2, I didn't think Mitch was being a bad parent to leave town for a while. If my 17-year-old daughter had just been brutally murdered, I don't think I'd be up to parenting two young kids and dealing with my husband giving in to rage enough that he nearly killed an innocent man. That's the point at which you send the kids to their grandparents or another relative, because if nothing else, the kids don't need to be in the middle of a media frenzy about a murder investigation.  The scene in which Mitch got so distracted she forgot the kids were in the garage with the car running proved she was in no shape to take care of the kids anyway.  She needed time to do some private grieving without having to worry about taking care of the kids and spouse. Mitch at least recognized she needed to get away, while Stan kept doing stupid shit like getting back in bed with the mob boss because the police didn't catch the killer right away.  Similarly, I have no idea why Gwen was considered by both Jamie and Darren to be a traitor for finally telling the police that Darren was not with her the entire night on the night Rosie was murdered. Both Darren and Jamie were essentially asking her to lie to the cops and potentially commit perjury if it ever went to trial. I'm not sure of the legal issues entirely, but isn't lying to the cops considered obstructing justice or something similar? Pesky little things like obstructing justice or committing perjury have major potential to come back to haunt someone with a career in politics. With Linden, it was a major relief to me when Jack left to go stay with his father, because Linden was incredibly neglectful. I understand she was working on a murder case, but if nobody else is available to take care of your kid, you have to go home regularly and make sure the kid is fed, clothed, and well. Finally, in the last episode of S2, when Terry kept sobbing, "I didn't know," I felt zero sympathy for her. Yeah, it sucks you didn't know that was your niece you were murdering by pushing the car into the water, with her trapped in the trunk and dying a horrible death. But you knew it was someone, and you were perfectly willing to kill some random girl because you thought your boyfriend would still leave his rich wife and marry you after he just announced that the entire construction deal was off. Somehow I doubt that him seeing you kill someone in cold blood to cover up a sleazy construction deal is going to make him conclude that leaving his wife and starting a family with you is the best choice. 

S3 kept me invested throughout, but watching S4 was a struggle largely because I couldn't decide if the hazing/casual violence at a military boarding school was grossly exaggerated or spot on, and I didn't really want to know. That particular case did nothing for me and I thought was a waste of Joan Allen, for the most part. The underlying theme of Linden possibly getting caught for killing Skinner just annoyed me.  He would have killed her if she hadn't shot him, and while she shot him a couple of times after he was on the ground, it still seemed to me a justifiable or at least understandable killing. She was so caught up in the horror of realizing he had killed all those girls that I don't think she was capable of reacting normally at that point. I also keep asking myself what would have happened if she and Holder had just called it in. Would the department have filed charges against her, knowing that a trial would bring out all the gruesome details of what Skinner had done and also revealing that the state had executed the wrong man? I have to weigh the outrage that would have occurred because she had killed a fellow cop against the outrage that one of their own had been a particularly horrific serial killer. My guess is that someone higher up the police food chain would have decided to do what ultimately happened in the end, not press charges and sweep the entire thing under the rug for fear of making the department look bad.

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I'm about 4 years late, but I just watched all 4 seasons over the past 4 days. I enjoyed all 4 seasons, especially season 3. It was riveting but difficult to watch at times. I feel like Seward shouldn't have been executed, but brilliant work by Peter Sarsgaard. I'd never seen Mireille Enos in anything before, or at least I don't remember her. Fine actress though. Joel Kinnaman was great as well. In fact, I'm going to look at his IMDb page and see what else he's in that I can watch. Season 4 was the disappointing season for me. Not long enough. Kyle having killed his whole family, especially his little sister, just doesn't make sense. Too bad they couldn't have gone on for a few more seasons but sometimes it's best to quit while you're ahead.

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I just wanted to add that I think you're wrong about Linden and Holder. I always felt like there could have been something else between them. In fact, I was hoping that was going to be how it ended.

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I binged all seasons over a few weeks and overall it was an enjoyable series, probably not as great as advertised but pretty good nonetheless. In terms of pacing and the mystery I enjoyed season 1 the most. Season 2 was also okay although I agree with others up thread that I probably wouldn't have been patient enough to watch it weekly.

Season 3 was ok, disturbing but the Sarsgaard stuff and Skinner as the killer didn't really ring true for me. Seward was the son of a career convict, married to a prostitute  a thug in essence but he seemed to be acting in a Shakespearean play or channeling Hannibal Lector at  times. Skinner as the killer just seemed contrived for dramatic purposes. Although not given any real background it is hard to believe that this career cop just lost it and began a serial killing spree of young girls probably in his forties. I know some serial killers lead double lives but there were just no indications in the story.

Season 4 wasn't that great but the short season may have also contributed to that. I never saw Linden and Holder as a romantic pairing at all so felt the end was just to add some sunshine to the otherwise very bleak season.

On the characters I agree that Linden and Holder were not very good cops. Linden was too emotional, increasingly hysterical and she often just bulldozed her way through investigations which fits with her background (she probably never learned to process her emotions etc) but in reality she probably would never have passed the police department psychiatric evaluation. By the fourth season I'd lost most of my empathy for her character and just wanted her to grow up.

Holder in season 1 looked like a drug addict and behaved liked one. I found his whole 'wigger' persona cringe worthy, at first and throughout the series really, but fortunately the actor seemed to tone it down as the series progressed or maybe I just got used to it.

I really liked the Darren Richmond character even though he seemed to have lost some of his idealism at the end which was expected. A question, perhaps I missed it with the binge watching but was the whole email Orpheus thing ever explained. Was it Richmond who took that girl to the lake talking about drowning?

Edited by BlueJay81

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I'm with you Shellos8, I don't know how I missed out on this tv show back then but I basically watched all four seasons within the past few weeks, and I honestly enjoyed it. It definitely would've been nice to see the series continue, but like you said perhaps it's best to quit while you're ahead. In retrospect, I think I enjoyed more from seasons 1 and 2. It had a better grasp on me then the rest of the seasons and I feel the characters were more convincing and tolerable in seasons 1 and 2, especially the acting. I sure didn't expect that clever little twist at the end. I will admit though that I had a feeling Gwen or Jamie were up to something to begin with. Season 3 took a slow start for me, but it eventually started to click. I think it started off as more dark and menacing than the first two seasons, and also we were introduced with more random characters that were so different from the ones we were so invested in during seasons 1 and 2. I was kind of disappointed it went in a similar direction as far as teen girl who is missing/killed. I feel like they should've went with a different story instead, but I eventually gave in and it didn't really bother me after some point in the season. I really admire Peter Sarsgaard, I think he's a terrific actor in the films and shows that he's in. I will say that I would've much preferred they showed flashbacks in his scenes because it seemed like every time he was on screen, it was him behind bars or being harassed and just so much dialogue in my opinion. It would've been cool to see some flashback re-enactments clarifying more about his past. Season 4...eh...It just didn't really do it for me, but I didn't entirely hate it. It just seemed so dysfunctional or discombobulated at most times. Holder and Linden were slowly losing it, Reddick was breathing down their necks, and I don't know, I just couldn't connected with the military academy scenes. It seemed too predictable and obvious and even cliche during some moments. This season seemed to have more jabbering and was a little more depressing too. It felt like there was more crying in this season. If only Linden didn't pull that trigger, right? Trust me, I was shaking my head for a while after that. She let her emotions get to her. The ending was alright. Typical inevitable reunion with smiles and small talk. You could tell those two really felt comfortable around each other, even through all the arguments. They had a good on screen chemistry together. Both good actors. I've seen some work from Joel Kinnaman before watching this show. He was in the recent Robocop and Suicide Squad films. He's a Swedish actor, I believe. I can't recall seeing any work from Mireille Enos though. She seems like a solid actor. Gives off a natural on screen presence. Would love to see her in roles where she's lively and exuberant, pretty much the opposite of Linden. I'm sure she would be terrific at that too. But yeah, I enjoyed this show a lot. It gave off a genuine feeling of perhaps what it's like to be a detective or solve crimes. Also, I grew up in Washington so it was nice to see Seattle and of course the weather there, even though I read on IMDB that it wasn't filmed there.

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On 8/12/2014 at 4:48 PM, Cardie said:

I don't think Joe Mills ever killed anyone either, major creep that he was.

Yeah I just started this fourth season, and am already feeling sorry for Joe Mills; is he going to get the needle for something he didn't do? I binge watched a couple hours of season 3 yesterday and got thoroughly depressed, but I couldn't stop. This season looks even more depressing as it seems inevitable that the coverup isn't going to stay covered up for long. So much foreshadowing of how hard it is to create a completely watertight story.

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