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Based on a Danish series of the same name comes Netflix’s “The Killing,” a show about the life of detective Sarah Linden and her partner Stephen Holder. These characters are homicide detectives with the Seattle police department.
The show begins with the murder of a young girl and follows both detectives and the victim’s family. Unlike traditional shows about homicide, “The Killing” is all about the footwork and the art of detection.
Linden is a seasoned officer on her last days with the police force, until the Rosie Larson case falls into her lap. The murder reminds Linden of a previous murder that she encountered, resurrecting a past obsession.
Each episode has the investigation day numbered at the bottom of the screen. As the viewer, we are able to watch the daily progression of this pivotal case. As the police hit the trail, the life of the teen becomes more apparent, and Rosie’s secrets are opened up to the world. This slowly disassembles her family. After two seasons of searching, we are finally given closure.
Seasons three and four follow similar patterns. A crime is committed and our detectives are off.
“The Killing” breaks the traditional cop show formula, making it all the more entertaining. We won’t know by the end of the episode what happened to the body, just like in real life. This is one time when television is actually closer to the actual process of police work. It isn’t exaggerated for the viewer, and doesn’t turn the detectives into modern-day heroes.
“The Killing” also deals with the personal turmoil of holding onto reality as a police detective. The viewer sees relationships fall apart and even addictions creep into the front of the characters minds.
Not only do we get a glimpse into their personal lives, but also their mental states. This show is incredibly difficult to watch without full attention due to the intricate details. Instead of spoken language, there are often physical queues to figure out to better understand the crime.
If police work and murder mysteries are your thing, “The Killing” might be something to quench that binge. Though darker than Law and Order or NCIS, this show is worth the watch.
Shows similar to “The Killing” are “Broadchurch,” “Luther,” “The Fall” and “Top of the Lake.”
Starring: Mireille Enos, Joel Kinnaman, Billy Campbell and Liam James.
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