Television: The Killing
WEEKLY REVIEW: FAREWELL TO 'THE KILLING'
THE KILLING | Season 4
Veena Sud, Dan Nowak, Dawn Prestwich,
The season features detectives Sarah Linden and Stephen Holder handling the fallout of their actions from the previous season while investigating the murder of a family whose only survivor is a member of an all-boys military academy.
*SPOILERS FOR SEASON 4's ENDING AHEAD*
AMC's The Killing was resurrected for the second, and probably last, time on Netflix this year.I had sworn off The Killing mid-way through season 2 because of how meandering and unnecessarily complex the Rosie case has become. But I returned for season 3 and throughly enjoyed it. Why? Because The Killing realized that it works best when it fully utilizes the great chemistry between the show's leads, Mireille Enos and Joel Kinnaman. The show hits its peaks by simply pairing the two complex detectives' with a suspenseful but concise mystery to solve. Anything more tends to become tedious. And just like in season 3, season 4 continues to focus on the fascinating relationship between Linden and Holder.Of course, there's also a staple mystery for the two detectives to become emotionally invested in and ultimately, solve but compared to previous seasons, season 4's case is a lot less expansive.Kyle Stansbury and Colonel Margaret are the only recurring suspects the two detectives seriously question in their attempst to figure out who shot the Stansbury family in cold blood. As Linden and Holder uncover the season long mystery of who brutally murdered an entire family including a young girl, The Killing proves that it definitely isn't afraid to get darker for its last season. The show's tone becomes even darker as the question of whether or not it was actually Kyle himself who killed his whole family looms over the characters' heads throughout the season.The Stansbury storyline holds less suspense than the Pied Piper case from last season but I appreciated how it folded so nicely into the season's general theme of the family unit.As I said, the focus The Killing should always revolve around the complicated push and pull relationship between Sarah Linden and Stephen Holder though and that's exactly what the writers do in this final season.Throughout the season, the show's establishes a clear theme - what is a good family and/or parent? Linden and Holder are forced to not only deal with the short-term ramifications of Skinner's murder but also their perceptions of family for the long term.For Linden, the idea of a permanent family is hard due to her restless and isolated nature. Even when her son, Jack returns, Linden alienates herself from everyone. Meanwhile, Holder begins expecting a child of his own. And In the face Linden's poor parenting skills, the Stansbury case, and his addiction problems, Holder becomes increasingly unsettled by the possibility of screwing up his own family.But as dark and heavy as the entire show and all these story-lines are, The Killing concludes with a hopeful ending that's still fitting for the show's morose tone.Yes, the show's final episode include scenes of brutal murder and then suicide. However, at those very last minutes, there's undoubtedly a sense of hope and resolution for our main protagonists in for Linden and Holder.Because Linden realizes something that's always been apparent - together, Linden and Holder created a family and home. Holder is really the only constant person that Linden can possibly stay beside. And at the end, she overcomes her anxieties and stays. There's the potential for happiness.I loved it so much.I actually hope this already twice revived show isn't miraculously renewed again because I really couldn't have imagined a better ending for my favorite depressing detectives.