'The Killing' Season 2 premiere: The beginning or the end?

the-killing-s2-premiere.jpgSeason 1 of AMC's " The Killing" concluded by posing, arguably, more questions than it had in the beginning. Not only was Rosie Larsen's murder investigation not resolved, but the storyline partially came full circle.

While politician Darren Richmond ( Billy Campbell) was revealed to have a sleazy, prostitute-soliciting side and was arrested for Rosie's killing, it was soon uncovered that the evidence against him was faulty -- the result of some framework on the part of Detective Holder ( Joel Kinnaman). Holder's good cop-bad cop split personality further pushed the former addict towards his dark side, and audiences were left wondering not only whether the real killer would ever be found, but also if there was anyone trustworthy enough to get the job done.

Executive producer Veena Sud has promised Season 2 would resolve all lingering issues, but not without presenting a few of its own. Off the bat, the two-hour season premiere Sunday (April 1) doesn't make life any easier for the entangled cast of characters, still battling their own personal demons alongside the rising web of activity surrounding Rosie's case.

To begin with, Richmond gets nearly assassinated by one of Stan Larsen's ( Brent Sexton) vindictive employees, and while he survives the shootout, the injury leaves him paralyzed.  

The fallout is swift, particularly since Detective Linden ( Mireille Enos) quickly picks up on the fact her partner planted tampered evidence to incriminate Richmond. The case against the politician is dropped thereafter, but that doesn't help him much, now with a life-altering impairment. 

Plus, Rosie's killer is still on the loose, and, as a friendly reminder, the anonymous villain leaves her bloodstained backpack mercilessly at her family's doorstop for Stan to find. 

Oh, how the shakeup continues.

More highlights:

  • Prior to Campbell's emancipation, Holder, thinking somehow he is in the right, switches out Rosie's bloody backpack with his own so that forensic testing won't identify her blood on the parcel. Hence, the killer will not be presumed free. Forensics, nevertheless, does a little tampering of its own and identifies her blood anyway.
  • Richmond may be cleared from the investigation, but he's forever linked to the Larsens, and his PR and campaign strategists launch a mighty effort to steer this attention in a positive direction. The pressure eventually gets to Jamie (Eric Laden) however, and a fight breaks out between him and the mayor's right-hand man.
  • The already tumultuous relationship between Holder and Linden immediately gets rockier when Linden realizes Richmond was framed by her own associate. The closing scene shows Linden barring Holder from her apartment, a symbolic foreshadowing of their forthcoming dual. 
  • Remember Stan's shady past? Well, now he's not afraid to use it, hiring a hitman to avenge the death of his daughter as the premiere draws to a close.

Sud has said not to expect the killer's identity to be revealed until the end, so these new issues will surely play out dramatically as " The Killing" continues next week. 

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Photo/Video credit: AMC