TV Recap

Investigating The Killing: Episode Seven

Vengeance is no one’s on day seven of the Rosie Larsen case.

By Jessica Voelker May 10, 2011

“Hey Linden, is it just me or does this flash-lit scene take you back to 1990s-era productions like Se7en and The X Files, what with the rusty locks and the creepy grappling hooks?”

“It’s not just you.

This week’s episode of The Killing is called "Vengeance," but nobody gets any.

We start out in the car with Bennet Ahmed and Stan Larsen. Stan is supposed to be driving the teacher home—because that’s such a normal thing to do when you’re hosting your daughter’s funeral—but (oopsy daisy!) he misses the exit leading to Ahmed’s apartment and instead drives to the end of a pier. Uh-oh Bennet, is Larsen going to kill you just for being a suspect? That seems kind of harsh.

Oh, but if only it had been Darren Richmond out on that pier, and if only Stan had gone ahead and pushed him into the water (as opposed to Ahmed, whom he just leaves there), we wouldn’t have had to watch the scene.

And no, I’m not referring to the one where Darren and Gwen have unsanitary desk sex. I’m talking about the one where Darren pays a visit to the mother of his dead wife to discuss the imminent release of the drunk driver who killed her (she’s being released from the Bainbridge Island Corrections Facility for Women, because that exists). “I just don’t think I can ever forgive her” he says, in his best throaty soap opera voice. And then his mother-in-law says it. The line. The wretched, wretched line.

"Are you sure it’s just that woman you can’t forgive?"

Subtle, The Killing. Real subtle.

But there was redemption ahead. In a scene at the Larsen house, we learn that Mich’s pregnancy with Rosie had been unplanned. Mich gave Stan an ultimatum: Stop being part of the Polish mob if you want me to keep the baby. So Stan stopped killing and robbing and marauding and doing whatever else the Polish mob do in Seattle, and he became a mover. Having Rosie made it easy, Stan explained. He didn’t want to be a gangster dad. And to avenge Rosie’s death by killing her teacher, he would have had to revert to his pre-Rosie thug self. He would have had to deny the significance Rosie’s life had to him.

That, when you think about it, is a pretty astute metaphor for the psychology of mourning. Getting over a dead loved one is so difficult precisely because it means having to re-enter the world as it was before or without that loved one. In some ways, mourners are forced to revert to a prior version of themselves. Pretty deep stuff.

Let’s see, what else happened? Linden missed another flight to Sonoma—shocking—and we learned she almost lost custody of Jack when she was investigating another child’s murder. It become clear (it was pretty clear before, but okay) that Linden is sticking with the Rosie Larsen case to avenge that kid’s death.

What else? Mich and Terry’s mom shows up, she turns out to be a total beyotch. And in a scene straight out of a Justice League comic, Darren Richmond’s evil mayor nemesis calls an emergency meeting of the Seattle City Council. The council votes unanimously and without debate (LMAO) to suspend the Seattle All-Stars, Darren’s cause celebre. Why? Because Bennet Ahmed is involved and Richmond refuses to kick him out.

Finally, Holder and Linden, acting on a tip, break into a meat-processing plant in Rainier Valley where they are arrested by a gaggle of FBI agents.

Phew, day seven was a long one.

Most ridiculous fake Seattle thing Can we talk, production assistant in charge of research for The Killing? I realize you were stuck in Vancouver for a few months and maybe your goldfish died because your roommate forgot to feed it (but remembered to ruin your silver Manolo sandals) and possibly your boyfriend left you for some slutty Bravo AP. Distractions, all. I get it. But that still didn’t give you carte blanche to do such lackadaisical research. Green Lake mosque in the Rainier Valley? No. Not even close.

Current murder suspect In the episode six wrap-up, we introduced spinster Aunt Terry as a potential suspect. And now that we know what a shrew her mom is, I’m thinking there’s some interesting psychology to explore there.

The Killing airs Sundays at 10pm on AMC.

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