Sunday, 17 February 2013

Finishing The Killing Series 1

For Christmas I got the first season of the original Danish version of The Killing from my father-in-law. It's taken me nearly two months to get through the 20 hour long episodes and it's been an interesting watch. I'm not really big into murder mysteries and I choose the TV series that I will watch very carefully as I hate to waste 20 hours of my life on something rubbish.

Gosh if I'd known how Lost was going to end I'd have quit on that shit a long time before the sixth series. Anyway The Killing had interested me as it had got so many rave reviews, had been compared to The Wire (which I still haven't seen) and I'd recently watched and reviewed a similar Danish murder mystery TV series called Unit One for Filmoria.


The Killing for anyone who hasn't watched it is all about the police investigation into the brutal rape and murder of a nineteen year old student, Nanna Birk Larsen. Sarah Lund is the DCI in charge but is supposed to be off to Sweden with her son to live happily ever after with her partner. Her replacement Jan Meyer would like nothing more than to take the reigns on the case but Lund is a determined, obsessive cop and refuses to let go of the case to the detriment of her personal life and relationships.

What I loved about The Killing is that there was a thick web of characters surrounding the case. They all felt very real and provided a great deal of interest and suspense into the events after the murder. The family of the victim, a politician and his campaign crew and more and more assorted suspects keep clotting up the case and providing fresh intrigue and fresh suspects throughout the 20 episodes.


At the centre are Lund and Meyer who bounce off each other brilliantly. Sofie Gråbøl and Søren Malling give wonderful performances and their characters are easy to root for in amongst all the backstabbing and secrets that everyone surrounding them seem to have.

And this is what annoys me a little bit about the story. Every character has secrets. While this means there are plenty of twists and turns, some more unexpected than others, it also means there are a hell of a lot of people lying and hiding things from the police in the middle of a murder investigation. I found some of this highly implausible as these people are hindering the police in catching a killer for their own silly little reasons often. Therefore some of the plot twists seem a stretch too far and in my opinion the whole series could have been wrapped up a bit quicker.


However the ending was a good surprise and wonderfully dark so it was worth the wait in many respects.

I'm up for catching the second series and I'm damn pleased that the Danish version didn't do what the US remake did in withholding the killer's identity until the end of the second series. That would have driven me flipping nuts.

Now I'm going to make a start on The Walking Dead Season 2. Have you seen The Killing? Is it worth watching the next two series?