the KILLING: Season Four Episode One – Blood in the Water

Back for its fourth season is the KILLING. Formerly, this was an AMC production, it is now available via Netflix streaming service, and all six episodes are currently available. So you can watch them consecutively in one long day, or two a day for three days, or spread them out as you see fit. For the record – this post will just be about the first episode, of this, the final season.

Yes, we are back in Seattle with its dark and threatening skies, and leaden clouds,  with the ever-present gloom and it’s chilly atmosphere. And that’s just the people. Detectives Linden and Holden return in what might be called the 2014 version of ‘the never-ending story’.

When we last saw them, at the close of the third season, Detective Linden had just executed Skinner, who was the serial killer of young people that they had been hunting, as well as Linden’s former partner, lover, and boss. As Holder would say, “He was on his knees when you shot him. No one will ever believe it was self-defense.”

So they had to dispose of the body, and get their stories straight, because despite Linden’s feelings of guilt, she still felt that shooting Skinner was justified. Holder would later say – You want to go to prison? Is that it? I ain’t going to prison. That is after Linden arrived home with Skinner’s blood still in her hair, on her hands, and on her clothes, and she had to shower it all away. Later Holder would arrive at her house, so they could go over the details and console each other. He told her to get a few hours of shut-eye before they went in.

I aint going to prison

I aint going to prison

So begins the KILLING – Season Four Episode One called, unsurprisingly, Blood in the Water. So despite Reddick’s questions and generally smart-assery, the two detectives stayed stoic and they said that had not found Skinner.

But a new case, a savage family murder is their next call. A family of four, The Stansbury’s had all been brutally murdered. All shot multiple times. Each one shot in the face as well. The fifth member of this family was found with a gunshot wound, that had not killed him. He was found unconscious but alive, with a gun near his hand.

The doctors did not have to save him, as this bullet had only grazed his skull. The boy recovered after the doctors stitched him up, but he claimed to not remember a thing.

The first thought was that this was a case of multiple homicides, then a botched suicide. But this theory was blown away when later, the ballistics would prove that the gun that was found near him was not the gun that had killed the others. It was the same make, but the striations were different. In short, the gun the police recovered at the scene was not the murder weapon.

Linden wondered: Why would he kill them, then go to all the trouble to get rid of the gun, then come back and try to kill himself?

Holder offered – He murdered them, got rid of the weapon, them felt extreme remorse.

A search of the house, the grounds, and even the nearby waters by police divers did not turn up the gun.

Three more things –

The boy, Kyle Stansbury is a student at a nearby military school.

The Commandant of the school, Colonel Margaret Rayne is played by Joan Allen. Is she the new version of Nurse Ratched?
The Stansbury Will left an estate of 50 million to be held in trust until Kyle, the surviving member of the family, was thirty-five years old. No funds were set aside for college or any thing else.

So the natural questions are – Did Kyle know about the will? What was the relationship of the school’s commandant and Mr. Stansbury, and finally – did the neighbors see anything as this was a mostly a glass house.

Okay – with only six episodes, we know that everything will be wrapped up this season. No one is expecting a fifth season. Can Linden and Holder keep their cool? Holder’s girl friend is newly pregnant.

I hope this season moves as quickly as Season Three didn’t. There won’t be time for false leads, suspects that arouse police interest and then turn out to be just persons of interest but not suspects.

I think one has to prepare oneself for this pair of brooding leads. Mireille Enos is fascinating to watch as Detective Linden. First of all she is so tiny, but she commands any scene she’s in. While she may be a person on the edge of something all the time, she manages to stay in control. But not so much in private.

Holder is played by Joel Kinnaman who seems calmer, and grounded, on the exterior but is far likely to be more dangerous within.

I’ve never liked his character’s back-woodsy/down-town/homey amalgam. He just doesn’t look like or sound like a detective. He always seems to look more like the perp than the police detective working the case. But there’s no doubt that he knows his stuff, and he seems able to relate to kids even when they know he is Five-Oh

Reddick is back, and yes, he’s still obnoxious. That’s all for this post as this episode was mostly angst, and the introduction of the new case. As for the old case, we know Skinner won’t be walking into Police HQ any time soon – but that doesn’t mean he won’t have some sort of impact.

Check out the trailer:


One thought on “the KILLING: Season Four Episode One – Blood in the Water

  1. A pitch perfect episode. I think that “Zing went the strings of my heart,” the song Judy Garland made famous in “Meet Me in Saint Louis,” will play an important part in solving the Stansbury murders. But, let’s not forget how Reddick looked through most of Season 3. I’m betting we’ll see several more murders that put The Killing homicide team out of it’s misery and into the record book.

    As I’ve said before on your blog, in my opinion Mireille Enos creates television’s most compelling sleuth. We will all mourn the loss when we finish watching her final season as Sarah Linden. Kinneman’s Holder,who came to homicide from an undercover job in Narcotics, is perfect as Linden’s trainee sidekick. Thank you also, Veena Sud (and the The Killing’s original Danish creators),for bringing two of the best detectives ever shot on film to the American audience.

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