AMC's The Killing returns with its second season on Sunday and in preparing this short primer before the episode, there’s one thing that even newbies to the series don’t have to be told: Rosie Larsen’s killer wasn’t revealed on Season 1.
Instead, we were served with several red herrings, plot 180s and possibly the worst detective work ever to be portrayed on television. Of course, hindsight is 20/20 and most viewers seemed fine watching the first 13 hours of the very slow-moving series – that was until the finale revealed that the detectives didn't find Rosie’s killer and a collective scream spread across the internet.
THR’s Chief TV Critic Tim Goodman wondered if viewers would return in his review for the second season, but finds a good reason why they should.
“Going into season two, the acting performances are the primary reason to tune in,” Goodman writes. “Yes, some fans, having invested 13 episodes, will enlist the final 13 to find out Rosie’s killer. Why not? You’re halfway there. Others might not have minded the endless red herrings and lack of movement/resolution in season one and thus were unaffected by the backlash and will return willingly for season two. But if disappointed fans decide to come back (and the guess here is that a great bloc of them are still bitter), it will be the acting that's the magnet.”
So, for those of you who are willing to take The Killing ride once again and need a quick reminder of where things left off or for those of you who are tuning in for the first time (and don’t feel like watching the slowly paced first season), THR offers 5 things to know before watching Season 2.
Note: This article includes Season 1 spoilers and Season 2 information revealed by AMC.
1. Detectives Linden (Mireille Enos) and Holder (Joel Kinnaman) are not on the same team any more. Linden, the divorced mother whose passion for finding Rosie’s killer has delayed joining her fiancé in California for weeks now, has discovered that Holder, her novice partner with an obvious drug addiction, has given her falsified evidence. He gave her a bridge surveillance photo pinning politician Darren Richmond (Billy Campbell) to Rosie’s last known whereabouts; she later finds out that the cameras weren’t working on the night in question. There will probably be very little chance she’ll trust Holder going forward, but we shall see.
2. Councilman Richmond has been shot. As a result of his arrest for Rosie’s murder, Larsen family friend, the emotionally unstable Belko (Brendon Sexton III), shoots the councilman in a rage that comes from his unhealthy attachment to their family. This event (and the guilt associated with it) will add to Linden’s desire to return to the investigation.
3. The Larsen Family is in shambles. Clearly, having their daughter killed was the catalyst for some deep problems in the family. The sorrow has basically immobilized mother Mitch Larsen (Emmy-nominated Michelle Forbes). After finding out that father, Stan Larsen (Brent Sexton), beat up Bennett Ahmed (Brendon Jay McCLaren) Rosie's teacher and an initial suspect, and renewed ties with former mobster connections, she leaves the family. Mitch’s sister, Terry Marek (Jamie Anne Allman) is forced to step up even more to help take care of the family’s two young boys.
4. Rosie’s killer will be revealed on the Season 2 finale. Mirroring the show's Danish counterpart, AMC's head of original programming Joel Stillerman told reporters at TCA, “We've decided that in order to do justice to the story that we fell in love with in the first place -- a very multi-layered complex story -- we're resolving the murder at the end of season two was the best creative plan."
5. There will be a second case introduced. While the bulk of the series will be dedicated to the investigation into Rosie’s murder, there will be a second case introduced this season as well. Not much is known about what that second mystery will be.
The two-hour Season 2 premiere of The Killing airs Sunday at 8 p.m. on AMC.
Watch the video below for a handy update on where the investigation left off (minus the numerous red herrings).
E-mail: Jethro.Nededog@thr.com; Twitter: @TheRealJethro