The Killing's Latest Mystery: Why Hasn't AMC Renewed It For a Second Season?

Forget the Rosie Larsen murder. The unsolved mystery keeping me up nights is when will AMC renew The Killing for a second season?

By AMC standards, the show is a hit. Season to date, the whodunit is hovering around the 2 million viewer mark —  roughly on par with the network’s crown jewel, Mad Men. Yet, with only four episodes left before the finale, a pickup order has yet to come.

What gives?

“Historically, AMC is slow about making those decisions,” reasons The Killing‘s breakout star, Mireille Enos. “But everything is pointing in the direction [of a renewal]. And I know that they’ve been very pleased with the response.

“[Regardless] we’re all just so grateful, because we felt that we were part of something really special, and then to have the response come back and confirm that is really gratifying,” the actress continues. “And it encourages us that there may be the possibility to keep telling this story if there’s a second season.”

Perhaps the delay is the result of creative deliberations over what direction the show might take, were it to continue? After all, it remains unclear if subsequent seasons would follow Enos’ lead detective, Sarah, to different cities or keep her in Seattle. There’s also a possibility that the Rosie murder investigation could carry over.

“I haven’t heard anything one way or the other,” says Enos. “I know [exec producer] Veena [Sud] has several seasons mapped out in her mind, but she hasn’t let us know anything yet.”

The plot thickens.

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  1. Jason says:

    I’m pretty sure the audience will be livid if they don’t solve Rosie’s murder this season.

    • KMG says:

      Yep… this is one viewer who will be! I’d be glad to see more cases investigated by Sarah, but if they end this season without letting us know who killed Rosie, I won’t be back next season.

    • Chuck says:

      Yeah, that makes no sense. No chance they would have filmed an entire first season without a resolution.

      I still like the show and the acting, but it’s really hard to make something work with this particular format. The Killing is showing many of the same stresses and contrivances of the average 24 season.

    • jen says:

      Agreed. will not watch season 2 if this isn’t wrapped up. i’m tired of being jerked around by networks and showrunners who are either too scared or too uncreative to come up with a new idea, and just drag out plot points to fill time. I feel like I’m in a skinner box, pushing a button, hoping for a treat. And 90% of the time it’s not coming because the network want to see how long they can keep witholding while still getting me to push the button.

    • NickC says:

      You all Bum me out.This is the Big problem withTv today.No one can calm down and enjoy a big story.Everybody needs everything Now…as long as the writing is good then why do we have to tie it up so quick?There are plenty of shows like CSI and L&O that tie it all up by the end of the ep…I don’t think we are going to know who did it by the end of the season and i for 1 am glad.

      • ger says:

        I’m afraid you’re a rare voice of reason amongst people who seem to get worked up over silly things.

        • Bruce_F says:

          This isn’t about reason or patience, it’s about expectations.

          Knowledgeable viewers that jumped on board with this show at the beginning knew that The Killing was based on a season-long mystery format. Every season is supposed to be a new story and new characters. This is what many people found appealing about the show in the first place.

      • KC says:

        Amen! I will admit I hope we find out who’s done all “the killing” by season’s end, but I’m certainly not going to fly off the handle if we don’t. So long as the story continues to play out sensibly and enjoyably, I’m along for the ride. The ADD/instant gratification attitude of our society has become nearly intolerable and is absolutely responsible for the death of a lot of quality television these days. Patience is a virtue!

      • jen says:


        I can enjoy a big story. Believe me, I’m dying for one. The problem with TV isn’t viewers with no patience – it’s networks and showrunners who expect that patience to be endless and who never intend to reqard it- as in, “we’re never going to end this story or give you any conclusion at all.” It’s also called “lying to the viewers to manipulate better ratings.” I don’t need my conclusion at the end of an episode, but I do need it to happen sometime – and the people that make these shows have demonstrated that they are too afraid to EVER give viewers a conclusion.

      • TrishM says:

        I agree with NickC! This is THE most awesome show on TV right now for me. In fact I can’t remember looking forward to Sunday nights as much as I am now in a long time! The characters are amazing and real. I love the atmosphere, the rain, EVERYTHING! Whats the big deal about solving the murder this season?

    • Carrie says:

      Right. Everyone is expecting to find out who the murderer is in the finale, if not sooner. It would be pretty annoying if they tried to drag it out further. If the show comes back for a 2nd season, they need a completely different case to solve.

    • S johnson says:

      If they don’t tell us who killed Rosie I would be upset. that is the least they can do. I have been following each episode every Sunday. The second season should tell us why he did it.

  2. TeeHee says:

    I just wish that AMC would have continued to keep the show available online or through Hulu. I was able to watch the first four episodes online, but then they took them offline (probably for viewership numbers in the Nielsen boxes). I was watching the show and working through all of the show-related features on their website each week. Now that there is no opportunity for me to see the show, I keep up with it only lightly from reviewers critiques of the show episodes.

    I am too the point that I don’t really care who killed Rosie Larsen and I am giving up on AMC too!

  3. Tracy says:

    If they carry over the Rosie Larson murder (i.e. not tell us who killed her by end of this season) then I will fly to Seattle and figure it out myself!

  4. MLW says:

    I hope The Killing comes back for a second season. I love this show. I do hope Linda gets a new sweater for the next season. I admit I am obsessed with the sweater. :)

    • sherimoonzombie says:

      Dear lord, don’t get me started on those ghastly sweaters. They make me itch just seeing them. BTW, her name is Linden (not Linda, lol).

  5. Rock Golf says:

    Great show, but weird coincidence that two of the actors (apparently unrelated) are Brent Sexton and Brendan Sexton III.

    • Rock Golf says:

      Also, in the climactic roadside scene at the end of last ep, the first names of the 3 actors involved were Brent, Brendan and Brandon. That must have been fun for the director.

    • Medusaworks says:

      oh they aren’t related? i assumed that was brent sexton’s son!

      • Rock Golf says:

        Doesn’t seem possible. According to IMDB, Brent Sexton graduated from a Missouri High School in 1985, while Brendan was born in Long Island, NY in 1980. So unless the elder Sexton went to NYC on an eighth grade school trip that turned out to be particularly memorable, the shared names are just a coincidence.

      • sherimoonzombie says:

        I too got all caught up in the name similarities. I originally assumed that the Jr was one of the two little boys (since the dad is one of the Sextons). Weird coincidence.

  6. NickC says:

    I dig the show but M.Forbs needs to stop crying.Every ep she is freaking out over something and it has gotten old quick.She is a good actress but she can also be a huge drag on a story.(see True Blood)The best parts are the political and the detectives…after AMC killed Rubicon(so good)I would not put anything past those in charge.

    • Rock Golf says:

      Based on the series timeline, Michelle’s daughter was savagely murdered on the show about 8 days ago. Sorry she’s not the life of the party.

      • MrMank says:

        Brilliant response, RockGulf! I couldn’t have said it better myself!

      • NickC says:

        Why is it impossible for people to respond without being childish?…Look at her husband.The writers gave his role more to do than sit around crying.He is dealing with the same greif but he has the old MOB angle plus revenge on the wrong man.While Forbs sits in a room smelling and old shirt.It is just getting old(IMO)She is a good actress and i would like to see her do more.

        • tma says:

          I hear what your saying, but have to disagree. One of the things I love about this show is the way they have kept the parents as part of the story. Most murder mysteries, the victim is hardly known, we meet the family when they learn of the death and thats it. Losing a child is alot of peoples worst fears. Losing a child to a brutal murder is unfathomable. I for one pray I never have to deal with that, but if I do I hope Im left to grieve as I see fit without judgement from someone who has never suffered such a loss. Michelle Forbes is amazing. She the reason I started watching. Its a major adjustment to see her go from Maryann the Maenad to Mitch the grieving mother, but she nailed both parts and hope she gets some emmy love for this one. The gut wrenching way she is portrayed feels real to me. I think that is how a normal mother would react.

        • Buffy Freak says:

          My older brother died when he was 17 and I was 14. I can assure you that my mother and father both dealt with it in vastly different ways…my mom cried off and on for weeks while my dad was, at least in fron of us, very stoic.

        • Mykey716 says:

          Not only has it been only 8 (now 9) days since Rosie’s murder, Stan has a business to run, so he has to ‘get it together’ to function. Meantime, Mitch is a stay-at-home Mom, dealing with the death of her only daughter (and first-born child) I give her credit to at least attempt to try to function for her other kids, but when she’s home, alone with her thoughts and memories…you can just feel her pain. I think it’s Michelle Forbes’ best work in years and just love the show.

  7. Who DID kill Laura Palmer, anyway?

  8. Shaun Davis says:

    I’m still sad they cancelled Rubicon, was my favorite new show this season and was showing on a channel that usually gives shows a chance to grow an audience.

    • ty says:

      Didn’t Rubicon get a full season? Maybe the cable channels are a little different and give shows more time than that to build an audience, but if it hasn’t caught on after a season is it ever going to? I watched it for about the first 6 episodes and really wanted to like it. It was okay but didn’t keep me interested enough to keep coming back.

  9. JC says:

    If they don’t solve Rosie’s murder this season, they better do it pretty earlier in Season 2. This is not the kind of story line that viewers will tolerate being dragged out over 4 seasons. (That being said, what’s my incentive to keep watching after we know who killed Rosie Larsen?)

  10. Thom says:

    I certainly hope they solve this murder this season. I can tell them It’ Stan…gotta be and Come on AMC Get with the program and renew this Excellent show. It’s the best show on TV

  11. Steve says:

    Bc they realize they screwed up canceling Rubicon and want to announce that return first…

    • Chatty says:

      I wish! Rubicon was a fantastic show. I loved it. Hope they renew The Killing too and, yes, I would like to find out who killed Rosie by the end of this season.

  12. xforce11 says:

    They should take a page out of the original’s and do a new case each season. How that would work for Sarah, I don’t know. But I see AMC renewing it soon.

  13. Kathy says:

    They’re already starting to lose me. If they don’t solve Rosie’s murder by the end of this season, I won’t tune in if they give it a second.

  14. Pam says:

    I do like the show but it is getting a little stale. There is only so much of Linden and Holder chasing down false clues one can handle. However, I am grateful that the bickering between the two has stopped.

  15. Chicky says:

    I would love to see a new case each season. It’s like the “law” of LAW & ORDER without the obvious answer in front of us. If Rosie’s murder is not solved on its (hopefully) SEASON finale, I won’t watch again. No need to make this about a dead kid, or the same dead kid, next year.

  16. Neal says:

    The first four episodes of The Killing were brilliant, but the show has not lived up to its early promise. I’m not certain I would return as a viewer for a season 2 even if there is one.

    • MY opinion is better than yours says:

      I agree the first four episodes were brilliant and it definitely trailed off for the last few. Hopefully, this issue gets fixed for season 2. I felt the last episode was great though and I’m looking forward to the remaining few and next season.

  17. Jon says:

    The show has failed to keep my interest. I wanted to love it, and the first few episodes were great, but then it started to stagnate. I DVRd it, but would usually watch it that same night (after Brothers & Sisters), but a few weeks back I would push it off and then realized it became a chore to get myself to watch the episode. I’ll continue watching to the end to see who the killer is, but I probably wouldn’t watch a second season unless there is some major revamping of the storytelling process.

    • Slangups says:

      That’s exactly how I feel. It has become WORK to watch this show. I’m ready for it to be over. And – all- that- rain. My gosh. How dreary.

  18. Sourabh says:

    Yeah it’s a great show and all, but they really should wrap up the Rosie Larson case this season.

  19. jordan says:

    It will be picked up but it is lower in the ratings compared to Mad Men and Breaking Bad. And it gets 0.5 demo lately in the demo ratings while Mad Men gets usually a 0.7. It’s a very small hit. Probably will be back for one more season.

  20. nitemar says:

    ARGGHHH! What’s going on with the networks this year??, renewal deals gone sour, salary cuts and stars quitting, and all with my favorite shows!! First LE leaving House–who knows what went on on the table talks,– then Meloni on SUV, Kyra leaving(I know, but still one of my favs people), and npow The Kill??? WTF! Please renew or reveal the name of Rosie’s killer, I think am ready for a meltdown myself!

  21. Mel says:

    Along with Madmen and Breaking Bad, The Killing is top notch TV. AMC is fast becoming my fav network. Renew this sucker now !

  22. Bella says:

    It’s a great show and I’d watch a second season as long as they wrap up the murder by the end of this one. I want to know there’s an end in sight.

  23. Mykey716 says:

    I personally love the single story arc and I would only want to see it resolved IF AMC decides not to do Season 2 (altho this would be big mistake!!) I hate being left with an ambiguous ending like HBO did with the Sopranos. I’m willing to take the journey, but you have to bring me to the destination…don’t leave me in the middle of nowhere without a map!! (Like NBC did with The Event)
    AMC had no problem signing up season 2 of The Walking Dead during the 1st season….I think they’re afraid The Killing is too brainy, like Rubicon,(which I loved) but the numbers certainly show The Killing is certainly popular. Let’s hope TPTB make the right decision and soon!!

  24. GDM says:

    maybe AMC is as bored with it as i am? i stopped watching after episode 5. it’s slow, boring & the characters aren’t at all interesting. i don’t get why so many critics love it. it’s just soooooo boring. they tried to recreate twin peaks & picket fences & they failed. epically.

    oh & don’t even get me started on the rain

  25. MoreTears says:

    Okay, first of all, let me just say that it really should be a scandal that American journalists who get PAID to cover television are clueless about what is going on with this show as far as whether the Rosie Larsen case will be wrapped up this season. Me? I don’t get paid to report on television, and yet I can tell all of you exactly what the plan is: the plan all along has been for the Larsen case to play out over TWO seasons of thirteen episodes, with the case being wrapped up in episode 13 of Season 2.

    AMC airs the show, but it is produced by Fox Television Studios, and the president of that company, David Madden, has said that the case will take “two years” to deal with — i.e., two seasons of 13 episodes. Even without knowing that Madden said that, a clue to the show’s producers’ intentions for a timeline is in the pilot, where it was established that the Seattle mayoral election day is 26 days away. Since each episode represents one day, counting down to election day, you do the math. It is TV Writing 101 that the murder investigation and political storyline will be resolved at the same time.

    Also, keep in mind that this entire show is a remake of a Danish TV show. The Larsen murder case in the Danish show was resolved after 20 episodes, and the Denmark TV channel on which it aired, DR1, is like HBO in having no commercials, so those 20 episodes are 50-55 minutes in length. Since the American remake is being fairly true to the Danish original, is it very likely that the content of 20 episodes running 50-55 minutes could be stuffed into 13 AMC episodes running 43 minutes + commercials? Of course not. But TWO 13-episode seasons at 43 minutes, that does approximate the length of the Danish Larsen murder case.

    As for all of the worrying about whether AMC will order a second season, just because they haven’t yet issued a press release announcing it doesn’t mean it isn’t a done deal. It’s a done deal. In fact, The Killing remake has already been sold to Britain’s Channel 4 (the Danish original airs on the BBC), and Channel 4 announced that they bought not one but TWO seasons from the US — something that they would not have done unless they had been assured that there would be a second season. Of course, we can’t expect American journalists to be aware of any of this, because that would mean expecting them to do a little detective work instead of sitting on their butts waiting for a press release from AMC.

    And finally, for anybody who thinks that the Larsen murder case should have been half the length, and wonders if future cases will all take two seasons (if the show continues past a second season), don’t worry. On the Danish show, the case that follows the Larsen case is resolved in 10 episodes, which would fit nicely into a single 13-episode AMC season. I think the Danes realized that the Larsen murder case was stretched out too long.

    • Linderella49 says:

      Where were you when the CIA was searching for Bin Laden? Who knew it would take almost 10 years! Seriously, I’m inclined to believe your detective work is spot on. Either way, I’m in until they solve Rosie’s murder whether it’s this season or next.

    • St.Jon says:


      Good job. I knew a little about the original but hadn’t computed the timelines. Very reassuring. Especially since I seem to be one of the seemingly few people in America without ADD these days who likes the “slowness” of the plot and can appreciate the intensity that causes.

  26. Alienware says:

    They could always show US who did it, without ending the case though.

  27. happysad says:


    I hope you’re wrong, but I fear you may be right about copying the original.

    I was always hoping that they would depart from the ludicrousness of the original, and rework the concept to something better.

  28. Skitty says:

    If I knew whom to beg for another season I would. Love this show.

  29. Sarah says:

    I really love this show. I hope there aren’t all new characters next season. I don’t want to say goodbye to Holder!

  30. Fann says:

    god I love this show,right from the get go. another season would be wonderful and than a next

  31. sweetbo says:

    The original Danish show filmed a season two and is in the middle of making season three. So if they want to do a season two on AMC there is a story already written for it. Each season of the Danish version solved the mystery by the end of the season so no worries about this mystery not being solved by the end of season one if it follows the original (which is has for the most part so far). Characters carry emotional baggage over to the next season but otherwise there is resolution to the case. You’ve got a lot of good stuff to look forward to if they do stick with the original’s trajectory.

    • roberto stevenson says:

      The Danish version, Forbrydelsen, took 20 episodes (split into two seasons) to solve its first murder so I’m not so sure we will be seeing the killer brought to justice at the end of our twelfth epi.

      As the series goes on, what I don’t like about it is that one now assumes the killer will not be found until the last day, whatever that turns out to be, so when the detectives appear to be zooming in on a suspect, the viewer now knows that that person will likely not turn out to be the perp. Oh well, can’t have everything. I still like the show and look forward to the couple of Sunday nights left for now. I find it much more enjoyable watching a female detective who starts her day by jogging and who dresses as Linden does rather than in spike heels, haute couture décolletage and overly coiffed flowing locks as do other American female detectives. If they dressed like that in reality police departments all over the country would be overwhelmed with worker comp claims for broken ankles and accidental falls.

  32. angela says:

    I would love to see AMC’s The Killing come back for a second season, I loved it!!!

  33. Lynn Lindsay says:

    we love the show is it over for this season already what we can’t find it on tonight what the heck channel is it on any way ??