The grim plotline of the new AMC hit The Killing has its origins in the Danish series Forbrydelsen, but according to American series executive producer Veena Sud, that series served only as the foundation for this adaptation.
This revelation may come as both good and bad news for fans of the original, thinking they know everything there is to know about The Killing.
Well, for those who were either steering clear of this version expecting a simple rehash, or smugly musing over knowledge the rest of us don’t yet have, it is probably a good time to start watching along with everyone else.
To hear Sud put it:
“Our version of The Killing uses the original series foundation — three stories, one murder, one episode, one day. We took the framework of the original, which was phenomenal storytelling, and used some of the shorter arcs and the longer arcs in their storytelling but started to just riff. After the pilot, just started to kind of go off in our own direction.”
It is safe to assume, then, the altered direction Sud and co. intend to lead the audience down will not only provide a fresh take on the story, but also find someone else responsible for the central crime.
“We have a different killer. It’s a really delicate house of cards sustaining a mystery for 13 hours. Knowing that we weren’t going to go to that same place that [the original series] did, we had to create our own twists and turns. I can’t say without giving it away. But the great pleasure of writing The Killing is to get to take all the tropes and clichés and formulas and either riff off of them or throw them out the window. That is the mindset I’ve had from the very beginning. There is no formula. There is no endpoint. Let’s see where this story takes us. If I don’t know the end, then no one else will guess it. Having said that, there’s a deeply satisfying and shocking ending to this story.”
So fans can rest assured that the mystery has not yet been solved by anyone outside of Sud’s writing crew and the AMC offices. While some of the elements may remain the same, it’s good to know that the end result will produce something new, which may be carried further. Series star Mireille Enos (Big Love) spoke briefly about the possibility we’ll see more from the characters.
“The season definitely leaves a lot of questions unanswered about these people we’ve gotten to know. It definitely opens itself up for continuation of this story.”
In conjunction with the overwhelmingly positive reaction this intricate murder mystery has received from fans and critics alike, a second helping of The Killing around the time Mad Men returns seems like a distinct possibility.
The Killing has been a refreshing departure from the doldrums brought about by so many similar one-and-done police dramas that have dominated the airwaves for the past decade or so. The program reminds one of Steven Bochco’s ambitious, but ultimately failed mid-90s legal drama Murder One, which followed a single criminal defense case for an entire season – resolving itself through the revelation of the murderer’s identity and motive. While that series was immediately retooled and subsequently cancelled after its second season, it doesn’t seem The Killing will share the same fate.
The Killing can be seen Sunday nights at 10 pm on AMC.
Source: Entertainment Weekly