"The Killing" wrapped up its first season tonight. I interviewed showrunner Veena Sud about the season, and highly recommend you read that before we get to my review of the finale, as I'll be discussing what she said a lot. My review - with plentiful spoilers for the episode, of course - coming up just as soon as me doing math is like a dog wearing a hat...
When AMC announced the renewal of "The Killing," and that Veena Sud would remain in charge, I tried to be optimistic. The people who run AMC aren't dumb, I thought, and they know their brand and how the audience feels about it. If they were willing to make this move before airing the finale and seeing the reaction, it was because they had seen the final cut and thought it would quell a lot of the doubts people have had about the show, and/or because Sud had made a season 2 pitch for that acknowledged many of this season's missteps and talked smartly about how they would be eliminated going forward.
Having seen the finale, and now talked to Sud, not so much on either account. "Orpheus Descending" itself is a mess, and an insult to the audience who have stuck around for the last three months. And based on my conversation with Sud, it sounds like we're getting more of the same next year.
So this will be the last review I write of "The Killing," because this will be the last time I watch "The Killing." Because I have no interest in going forward with a show that treats its audience this way.