Life is filled with its conflicts, disappointments and failures - and The Killing grips onto them with its rain soaked fingers and refuses to let go. It prefers to illustrate characters digging their way back to the top, searching for redemption and purpose amidst the never-ending hunt for Rosie's killer, even if at times the world they live in throws them another shovel to deepen their own holes.
Yet if Rosie's killer is eventually discovered, and we might find ourselves satisfied, will Stan? Will Linden? Will any of the characters' be able to smile again? Live again?
For Stan and Mitch, it seems as if coping is the only mechanism that could be used during their time of grief. I can't imagine losing a child and the many effects it would have on my life; clearly for both Larsen parents, it's influenced their day to day in drastically different ways.
Stan has been proactive in his actions, but his efforts aren't meeting the cheery results he might be looking for. His mob connections are resurfacing, his kids are becoming distanced and annoying, and now he might be going to prison. I feel for the guy because no matter how hard he tries, nothing is really working out in his favor and his two children may soon lose another parent.
I certainly don't blame Stan for running to Terry, Mitch's younger sister. She's been there for Stan, she's been there for the boys, and she's shown a certain care, concern and love. Should Stan have kissed her? It probably would have gone farther if not for the phone call, but it's understandable because she's been there for him. There's so much on his plate that he just needs that extra person by his side. And it's not like he never tried contacting his wife.
Mitch seems lost in drama la la land, on her own mission that excludes everyone around her, including taking care of the two kids that she still has. I understand she might not be handling the situation as well as her husband and acting selfish in her needs. If that's how the character is supposed to be written, the show has done a good job in making me dislike her.
Helping a girl in need? I know she wants her daughter back, anyone would, but you still have two kids, Mitch! If it was a guy saying all of those things to the girl, telling her where he's staying, offering to meet up for dinner, and giving her weird looks, most people would probably think creepy with a side of horror flick. In her mind, she's searching for the "why," but it's hard for me to watch and not want her to get off her ass and go back to her family. Good luck with the soul searching, I guess.
As for Linden, she was faced with a perfectly direct quote from her former husband, "You care more about that dead girl than you do about your own son." Harsh? Perhaps, but if Linden really wanted to, she could drop everything for her son. Is it the case that draws her back or the loss of a child that torments her, because right now, she does have her child, but might just end up losing him in her personal process.
I love her determination and I don't deny her love for Jack, but something has to give. She even looked more in the wrong for preparing to the call the cops. I truly wonder if once Linden finds Rosie's killer, if she will be done with police work for good.
And like most episodes, the murder plot line continued the gradual pace that sometimes felt like it was dragging its feet. I don't expect to know the big reveal in this episode or the next, but it would be nice to learn something or see them putting pieces together before the last few minutes.
I'm glad Alexi talked (he'll probably wind up dead for cooperating with the police, as most seem to on TV) and I've got a hunch that the black luxury car Rosie was afraid of probably belongs to the Mayor. That would ultimately retie the political campaign back up in the case making it relevant again.
But it was Alexi's final words that did shock me. Stan isn't the father? Should we consult Maury Povich on this one? I was expecting something more like Stan was really in charge of the mob instead of Janek, or Stan was doing something with the girls of Beau Soleil. So, if not Stan, then who? Someone we've seen before? It was certainly a twist to end the episode.
"Ghosts of the Past" tried to haunt up more problems for its characters and persist in making their lives difficult. It's going to be tough for anyone to move forward and with a few key points about Rosie, there's clearly more to her death than a simple murder. If anything, the show certainly works as an alternative take to regular procedurals and is decent enough when it doesn't become bogged down by over drama. I just hope further episodes spend a little more time on working the case instead of everyone looking so sad all the time.
Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.