Often opposing in their views on what makes for good TV, we decided to give two of our more outspoken critics - Jeffrey Kirkpatrick and Carissa Pavlica - a proper forum to duke it out.
In their inaugural View By Two column, Jeffrey and Carissa take it to the mat to discuss whether or not AMC's newest hit drama The Killing is already a hit or a miss.
Jeffrey Kirkpatrick: The Killing pilot was absolutely fantastic.
Carissa Pavlica: I was bored with it. See? Here we go!
JK: Bored?? Are you crazy!? Ok, so I did think there was a little too much dead air when Linden was "thinking" about the case, and there was a point when they were about to wrap things up in the park, before Rosie's body was found, when I thought "Oh great, another detective with super-intuition," but other than that I thought it harrowing, yet captivating.
CP: I am fairly certain I am the only person in America who watched it and was not captivated.JK: You weren't taken with the emotion? You're so heartless! It was painful to watch the parents break down once the (admittedly foreseeable) discovery of Rosie's body was made. And when the little boy lost it - so did I!
CP: I love Michelle Forbes, but she was it for me. Since I first watched her as Sonni/Solita on Guiding Light she has been one to watch. I hated the cops. B O R I N G. I don't really care why the girl died. I feel sorry for the family, but no more than I do in any other murder case highlighted on television. Maybe you're just a sap! I have no idea why I should care about the politician (other than he's hot), but it appears that, since the body was found in one his fleet of cars, he will be pivotal to the entire case.
JK: Ditto on Michelle Forbes. Why she's spent so much time under the radar is beyond me. Excellent, excellent actress. As for Billy Campbell (the politician), have you considered getting Lasik? He looked awfully rough from where I was sitting.
CP: Well, we do share the opinion that Forbes is incredible and underused. At least one thing we can agree on, shockingly. As for the plot, I do wonder who's blood is at the school, because the girl running toward the lake wasn't bloody, and she died by drowning. Is someone else missing? The possibilities are endless. Frankly, I just don't care.
JK: Can't disagree more. I think it's curious enough that Rosie was found dead in the back of one of Richmond's cars. What was her connection to the politician? Was he sleeping with her? (I doubt it.) Was one of his assistants involved? (I'm betting on it.) But you do raise ONE good question…she didn't appear bloody running toward the lake. And the witch hat was found in the basement alongside all that blood.
CP: If one of his assistants is in on it, then that's one hell of a stupid assistant. The (rather ugly) rich kid's dad seems like a somebody, but he's obviously a pain in the butt and more of a red herring than an actual killer.
I don't feel the writers have given me what I need to care about this story over any other procedural on television. Was the way it was portrayed or filmed what brought so many eyes to the project? I wonder what is so different about me that I was left rather untouched by the entire unfolding drama. Unlike the story on Private Practice about Charlotte's rape where I was riveted, I don't know these people. It's too much all at once, maybe. Or, I really am cold-hearted, as I've been told so many times before.
JK: Eh, you just have no patience. What I like about this, as I did with Rubicon, is that AMC tells their stories with such cautious pacing; they bait you with the shavings where most broadcast television shows these days are all too eager to cram the carrot down your throat. I'll take thoughtful, organic storytelling over a rushed flood of facts and dialogue any day. As for the ex-boyfriend, I actually felt sorry for his situation. That was one mighty smack to the face his dad gave him…maybe that's why he's so ugly?
CP: Har har. But who are all these people, really? Poor people with a seemingly good family relationship, a politician who seems nice on the outside, a seemingly scumbag new cop (Holder - giving pot to kids for information? WTH?), a kind of homely detective chick who was good at her job but quitting to get married. If there was supposed to be some spark that made me want Linden to stay (as her superiors so obviously did), they forgot to light the fire. Meh.
JK: Meh!? Step away from the Xanax! Linden is no Olivia Dunham for sure, but there is a contemplativeness about her I do find at least intriguing. Holder, though, yeah that dude is so skeevy I felt the need to delouse after watching his scene with those two school girls. Seems like the type who would have been cooking up meth, not hunting it down. And as for the rest, the near randomness of their connection is what makes it riveting! Why are these folks tied together by this heinous crime? What did Rosie have to do with Richmond's campaign? Who called Richmond to warn him someone was "talking?" What is the ex-boyfriend's involvement? Was there something significant about Holder's tattoo, or just a casual Linden observation? Whose blood is that in the cage? What secrets are yet to be uncovered? So many questions.
Maybe there IS something off about you Carissa. :-P
CP: The randomness that tied everyone together in the 2006 Academy Award Winning movie Crash was riveting, and it only took two hours of my life to figure it out. Maybe something is off about the rest of you who will spend 13 hours trying to figure out if it's riveting or just plain boring. FTW!
Whose side do YOU take? Let us know in the comments section below.
Jeffrey Kirkpatrick is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.