Forbrydelsen Vs. The Killing: Week Seven


We’re baaaack!  With AMC’s recent announcement that they’ve rescued The Killing from the land of the cancelled and have decided to push ahead with shooting a brand new third season, we thought it only fair that we should rescue these old posts from our archives as well.

Over the next few weeks we’ll try to get them all back into circulation.  They start off slow, but three or four weeks into it, you’ll see that we get uber obsessed and start jotting down all of the details from both versions, detective style.  

Whether  you’re a newbie watching from the very start, or if you’re a dedicated fan that just needs a refresh, we’re sure that you find these posts valuable.  Enjoy!

Episode eight is in the books which means there’s only five new episodes of The Killing left this season. Are Holder and Linden getting closer to catching the killer? Will AMC stretch Rosie’s murder out over multiple seasons? What’s up with the groceries in the Larsen home? Is Holder a really a scumbag junkie? Read on to get my take on these and other burning questions.

Missed a post in this series? Play catch-up using the links below:

Forbrydelsen / The KillingThe Killing: When we last left Steven Holder and Sara Linden they were face down on the ground after being tackled to the floor of a room they had just illegally broken into by the FBI.  Earlier, the pair had visited the mosque Bennet Ahmed worships at in order to track down a lead about a potential suspect and friend of Bennet’s named Mohammad.  It was here that they received an anonymous tip that Mohammad was staying at the location in question.  While on the ground Holder and Linden have a chance to scan the room and it appears as though it’s setup as a place to hold young woman.  One item in particular, a sweatshirt, catches Linden’s eye.  The FBI checks their credentials and finally releases the pair and we discover that it turns out they walked right into a high level terrorist investigation.  Linden returns home to Regi’s houseboat and makes a phone call to crime tech Ray and asks him to email all the files related to the Larsen case to the laptop she shares with her son.  She tells him that their boss Lt. Michael Oakes approved this.  The next morning only Linden gets briefed by the FBI, Holder gets left out.  All the bureau is willing to give up about Mohammad is that his last name begins with an H.  They close the potential crime scene Linden and Holder broke into, and thinking the Rosie might have somehow gotten mixed up with a terrorist cell,  they take all of the police case files related to the Larson murder.  Before the FBI can leave with all of the evidence however, Linden tricks an agent and is able to snap a quick picture of the sweatshirt she saw earlier in the room.

Forbrydelsen: At the end of episode seven Linden and Meyer wiretap Rahman Al Kema’s (Bennet) phone and overhear a possibly incriminating conversation he has with a friend named Mustafa Akkad (Muhammad H.).  At the beginning of episode eight, the detectives visit a local mosque where they have a chat with Rama’s father who reveals that Akkard may be living in an abandoned warehouse.  The pair tracks down the location of the warehouse and inside discovers a room which looks like it is being used to hold young girls.  They then gather the evidence and process the crime scene properly.  Whatever the Danish equivalent of the FBI is, (Europol perhaps?) they don’t interfere with the investigation at all.

Forbrydelsen / The KillingThe Killing: Meanwhile at the Larson household, the issues with food continue.  The kids are enjoying a delicious breakfast of Frosted Stars when Denny accidentally knocks his bowl to the ground breaking it.  Stan is multitasking, talking business on his cell phone while making the kids lunch, when this occurs.  He tells Denny to get his shoes on, but the kid is still in his pajamas.  Stan gets a second call from Mitch’s sister Terri who tells him she’s running late and won’t be able to take the kids to school today.  He tells her not to worry about it.  He looks down at the bread he’s been spreading mayonnaise on and makes the shocking discovery that he’s actually been using Nemirsky’s Extra Hot Horseradish instead.  Those poor kids, but it only gets worse.  Stan asks Mitch where she was last night (at the end of the last episode she was parked outside Bennet’s house) and she tells him she went to the grocery store.  She then offers to take the kids to school.  She gets them in the car and starts it up with the garage door closed.  She then remembers that she forgot something so she runs back into the house where she sees a breaking report that crime scene photos from her daughter’s murder have leaked and she watches as all of the horrific images are broadcast to the entire nation.  Meanwhile, before the kids can die of carbon monoxide poisoning Terri arrives on the scene to save the day.  Later the kids eat cheese sandwiches and discuss which Star Wars movie is best.  Seriously, no one could take the time to grill those sandwiches for them?  When the boys ask for seconds they are told no.

Forbrydelsen: There’s really no equivalent to the neglect the boys suffer on the Forbrydelsen side.  Yes Pernille (Mitch) is upset about Nanna’s (Rosie) death and she has her moments, but she’s still very conscious of the fact that she has two other children to attend to.  Her sister Charlotte (Terri) does help the family out a great deal.

Forbrydelsen / The KillingThe Killing: Over at campaign headquarters mayoral candidate Darren Richmond and his crack team of Gwen and Jamie are ready to go on the offensive after Mayor Bud Adams had Richmond’s Seattle All-Stars program shut down.  Richmond did some legal research and discovered an old case, Hunt vs. Washington State Apple Advertising Commission 1977, which could work to their advantage.  This was a real case in which the Supreme Court unanimously vetoed a North Carolina law which required all importers of apples to label their containers with USDA grades instead of state grades.  Washington State, who was a major apple provider at the time, used standards that were superior to the USDA.  The Supreme Court ruled that North Carolina’s law violated the Commerce Clause by discriminating against the apple producers which led to the advantage of local growers.  How the $#%# will this help Richmond’s All-Star program?  The case set the precedence for what Richmond explains as: “An organization has the standing to challenge any government action injurious to the organization itself.”  Richmond also wants to go on the offensive with a new smear campaign of ads against the mayor and he tells Jamie to hire a private investigator to dig up some good dirt.  Jamie pays a visit to millionaire mayor hater Tom Drexler to hit him up for more money, but instead Drexler gives him a juicy piece of damaging information about the mayor.

Forbrydelsen: It’s tough to compare the campaigns to one another since the way the two governments operate are very different.  Troels Hartmann (Richmond) does go on the attack briefly, but he never tries to flat out humiliate the mayor in the eyes of the voting public.  Instead works behind the scenes to clean house within his own campaign and his own political party and he also works to form strong alliances against the mayor with other major political parties.

Forbrydelsen / The KillingThe Killing: Back to those leaked crime scene photos.  Oakes confronts Linden with today’s newspaper before the FBI briefing.  After, Mitch arrives at headquarters and Linden apologizes to her and tells her that never should have happened.  Even later, while spying on Holder (we’ll get to that) Linden receives a phone call from an angry parent.  It turns out it was Linden’s son Jack who leaked the photos by forwarding the email containing the pictures to all of his classmates.  Linden and Jack have a weak confrontation in which it’s revealed that Jack’s father left them ten years ago and is completely out of the picture at this point.  This whole plot thread felt both unrealistic and unnecessary.  If you were a homicide detective would you share your laptop with your son?  If you did would you leave all sorts of horrific case file images lying around unprotected for your adolescent son to stumble upon?  Would any teenage son of a homicide detective be so unfeeling as to email graphic images of a dead body to his classmates?  It all feels just a little too far fetched.

Forbrydelsen: Mark (Jack) has a dad who is in the picture.  He pays Sara and Jack a visit in episode twelve and invites them both to dinner with his new wife and children.  Sara declines.  Mark has nothing to do with the case.  He doesn’t leak files or interfere in any other way other than to voice his displeasure at his mother’s prioritizing the case over their family.

The Killing: Bennet is on his way to school when he gets a call from the principal telling him to take a few days off until things cool down.  He drives around for most of the day and then acts defensive and elusive when his wife Amber later questions his whereabouts and involvement in the Larson murder case.

Forbrydelsen: Rama (Bennet) does return to teach at the school and while returning some of Nanna’s (Rosie) school books Pernille (Mitch) runs into him causing her to become very upset that he still hasn’t be arrested in connection to her daughter’s murder.

Forbrydelsen / The KillingThe Killing: Linden pays a visit to the Larsen household with the picture of the sweatshirt she snapped before the FBI took off with all of the evidence.  Mitch confirms that Rosie had a sweatshirt like the one in the photograph.

Forbrydelsen: Meyer (Holder) and Lund (Linden) show Pernille (Mitch) a series of photographs of the evidence they recovered from the room in the warehouse where Mustafa Akkad was staying.  Mitch doesn’t recognize any of the items as having belonged to Nanna (Rosie) until they come to the very last picture which is of a sweater.  It’s unclear if Mitch is telling the truth, or she’s fabricated the existence of the sweater in order to bring about justice for her daughter.

The Killing: Linden learns from Oakes that the FBI have officially taken over the Larsen murder investigation as part of their on-going terrorist investigation and that he tried to change their minds, but her stunt with the sweatshirt didn’t help matters.  Frustrated, Linden returns to her vehicle where she sees Holder meeting with the strange mystery man again in front of the precinct.  She watches as Holder gets in his car and then she follows them.  It turns out that the man is Holder’s sponsor and she ends up tailing them to an NA meeting where it’s revealed that Holder has been clean and sober for six months.  The envelopes Holder’s sponsor has been giving him that are filled with cash?  Turns out he’s been managing Holder’s paychecks for him so that he doesn’t spend the money on drugs.  The woman and child we saw Holder staring at in an earlier episode?  Turns out they are his sister and her son who he stole from in order to feed his habit.

Forbrydelsen: Meyer (Holder) turns from being creepy into a pretty decent guy whose personal life serves as a bit of comic relief from time to time.  Once, his wife will popped by the station with bananas and fiber pills for him to eat in order to stay regular.  Another time, in the middle of an interrogation, a detective delivered a message to Meyer from his wife which turned out to be a rather large grocery list.  Holder and Meyer seem to be two very different characters.

The Killing: Richmond attends a hearing to discuss the release from prison of the woman who drove drunk and murdered his wife.  She asks for forgiveness.  After the hearing Richmond goes into the bathroom and punches a mirror, injuring his fist.  On his way back to campaign headquarters he calls Gwen and tells her to leak the damaging information about Mayor Bud Adams to the press.  I guess he’s not that big on forgiveness.  Just what is the damaging info?  Turns out the mayor has been paying upwards of $1500 a month for the rent on the apartment of his alleged mistress, one Janel Stevens, a former intern in his administration.

Forbrydelsen: No such plotline exists on the Forbrydelsen side.  Instead in episode twelve it’s revealed that Hartmann’s (Richmond) wife died of cancer while she was six months pregnant with their first child.  Her death hit him hard and as a result he did some things that he’s not proud of; things that would be spoilerish if I were to talk more about them.

Forbrydelsen / The KillingThe Killing: The episode ends with Holder telling Linden that with nowhere else to go in the investigation he had Bennet’s phone wiretapped.  Cut to Bennet having a phone conversation with Muhammad in a foreign language.  He then switches to English and says: “The passports will be arriving tomorrow.  Call me when they do and this will all be over.  Don’t worry about the police, they don’t know anything.”  His wife Amber overhears this conversation.

Forbrydelsen: As stated earlier, in Forbrydelsen it’s the wiretap that initially leads Meyer and Lund to the mosque, the warehouse, and finally Mustafa Akkad.  If I were to say more it could spoil whatever The Killing has in mind for Muhammad H.

Overall I felt like episode eight of The Killing was the weakest offering yet. With just five episodes to go it seems like the series still has too much ground to cover in order to provide a satisfying ending to viewers. What do you think about how things are progressing? As always, no spoilers please!

About Aaron Westerman

Aaron Westerman is the Manager of Web Architecture for a national human services organization. When he's not busy tearing sites apart and rebuilding them, he spends his ever shrinking free time trying to keep up with his twins, reading works of translated literature, and watching far too many Oscar nominated movies.