The Killing Final Season Poster Dredges Up Dark Secret — Plus: Scoop on Linden and Holder's (Romantic?) Endgame

“The Past Can’t Be Washed Away.”

That cryptic tagline — accompanied by an ominous shot of Sarah Linden (Mireille Enos) staring out at a cloud-covered Puget Sound — paints a foreboding and gloomy picture of The Killing‘s fourth and final season on Netflix.

And that’s very much by design, according to series creator Veena Sud.

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“Sometimes you cross a line that you can’t uncross, and that’s what’s happened to Sarah at the end of Season 3,” explains Sud of the show’s leading lady and [SPOILER ALERT!] newly-minted cop killer. “She’s going to be dealing with the incredible fallout from her actions.”

Scroll down for an exclusive first look at the Season 4 poster, and then scroll down further for a fresh Q&A with Sud about the death-defying drama’s six-episode swan song. Plus: Is this really the end of the road for Linden and Holder?

The Killing Final Season Poster

TVLINE | You probably could’ve filled these final six episodes with the fallout from Linden shooting Skinner. But you’re also introducing a major new murder case featuring Joan Allen — how come?
Linden has always been a very busy woman. [Laughs] This final season is this bullet train towards the end of the story of Sarah Linden. Not only is she dealing with the massive fallout from her own actions, but she’s dealing with a case that is going to bring up the guilt that she harbors because of what she did. There’s no escape for her. This case is going to be a reflection of her own actions. It’s going to make her face the truth of what happened at the end of Season 3. Every moment is a mirror looking back at her.

TVLINE | Will the new case have any ties to the Rosie Larsen murder or last season’s serial killer story?
No. This final case is more symbolic of Linden’s journey and the question that [she’s been asking] her entire life as a cop, which is, “Who is the bad guy?” Her ethic for her whole entire life as a cop has been the world has to be black and white. There has to be good guys, there has to be bad guys. There has to be a clear vision of justice in this world. And clearly there is not. Clearly there is a monster in all of us.

TVLINE | Will the tone be as dark as previous seasons?
There are always Holder-isms in every season. [Laughs] But because of the burden of what happened at the end of last season, there’s a whole other set of dark rain clouds [hanging] over our detectives. The personal stakes are so much higher this season than the last [three]. This is really the endgame for our two detectives. Not only are they chasing a killer out there who murdered an entire family, but they’re also dealing with their own actions and questioning their own moral compass.

Linden-and-Holder kissTVLINE | Last season Holder and Linden nearly shared a kiss — will you further explore whatever romantic tension exists between them in the final season?
This season [they] are closer than they’ve ever been because of what happened at the end of last season. They’re tied together in this secret. They’re in this kind of unholy alliance. So that relationship over the course of the season will actually start to push and pull. They’re partners on this very intense investigation, but the trust between these two will start to chafe and there will be cracks in their friendship and their partnership because of this secret. In terms of romance, the question [surrounding] intimacy between a man and a woman who work together will remain. I don’t want to give anything away, but that question and the possibility between Linden and Holder — two people who are ultimately the same animal – will absolutely continue to exist deliciously.

TVLINE | Linden’s son Jack was absent from Season 3. Will he be back?
He will be back. Because this is the final season, all questions will be answered, including Sarah’s relationship with her son. There will be a final reckoning in terms of their relationship.

TVLINE | We’re also going to meet Linden’s mom, played by Frances Fisher. What will their dynamic be like?
That relationship — that abandonment at a young age — has been the primary wound of Sarah’s life. There will [also] be a final reckoning between mother and daughter. And Sarah’s questions of why she was lost as a 5-year-old will be answered.

TVLINE | The show has been cancelled — and subsequently uncancelled — twice now. Can you definitively confirm that Season 4 is the end?
[Laughs] The way we end the season will make it the final season. It’s the way I’ve wanted to end the story from the very beginning. There’s an image that I knew would be one of the final images of Sarah Linden from the very start. From Day 1. I just feel extremely, extraordinarily grateful and lucky to have this final season to end this story the way I wanted to from the very beginning. So, unless another writer wants to come in and continue to tell the story, it will be the final season.

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  1. Some chick says:

    So essentially Linden commits suicide fade to black.

    • Dick Whitman says:

      I don’t know if it will be a suicide but from “The way we end the season will make it the final season” you can tell she’s gonna die.

  2. MrMank says:

    August 1 I will basically be off the grid, curled up on my couch and binging on this show.

  3. Joey Padron says:

    Poster for final season looks good. Great interview with the creator of show. Can’t wait to watch final season.

  4. Thanks for the auspicious writeup. It in reality used to be a entertainment
    account it. Look advanced to more introduced agreeable from you!
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  5. Marco says:

    Ominous poster picture lifted from the end of the opening credits…

  6. B says:

    Linden sucks all the fun out of the show, IMO.

    • Jess says:

      IMO, she makes the show. Yes, Holder is cool and sometimes funny, but Linden is what made me keep watching. There’s something about the way Mireille Enos plays her that is very hypnotic.

  7. lo' says:

    I’d be mad if they killed her off at the end, if nothing because of the pain it would cause Holder.

  8. Holly says:

    Thanks for The Killing scoop!

  9. John Held says:

    Wikipedia shows season 4 only consisting of 6 episodes. Anyone know anything more about this? Is it really going to be this short?

  10. H. Lynn F Jr. says:

    I discovered “The Killing” via my Netflix account. Candidly watched the entire three seasons in three days – wow! TV [today] has become so bland, so predictive – not this show. I am pleased Netflix picked up season 4, August 01 is not far away, but I am disheartened this will be the last season. Too few good-excellent shows on any media today, this is one of the few that brings you into the episode and you find [yourself] angered when the episode suddenly ends.- they are that good Now the end means finality? What a shame to stop after only four seasons.

    My vote – keep moving forward, J.R. came back to Dallas years ago all a dream and the show grew [my parents loved it], why not Sarah Linden?

    • Nadine says:

      Wow… I can identify. I watched three seasons in a week and a half. I watched season four yesterday…all six episodes! It is hard for me now to watch regular tv after watching this picture, such great writing. I LOVE Linden and Holder, and the season finale was brilliantly done. Just wish that it was not over….

      • Maggie Blue says:

        I’m watching it again for the 2nd time, all seasons to date. I think Holder is one sexy piece, worth watching the show…but Linden is great, such a good actress, such an interesting person. They are both interesting. And the stories have been very good. I want more seasons – it could go on for years – Like Criminal Minds and some of those shows that we love so much.

  11. Saraheli says:

    Best ending ever! So excited for the way it was wrapped up.

  12. Erica says:

    I was late to the party but this show is amazing. Love it!

  13. Maggie Blue says:

    I loved this show and it could have gone on for years…and should. They could become Private Detectives, for instance ((and have a close relationship to somebody in Police Dept)).
    If Venna didn’t want to write it anymore, couldn’t someone else?

  14. olga hernandez says:

    The Killing is the best series so far for me..Oh how much i wanted to see that kiss..but that finale was great..leaving us with that ambivalent feeling…Holder and Linden belong together for eternity..Writers,please do not damaged that perfect ending. Leave it alone…cant be better than this ..

  15. Maggie Blue says:

    Re: “So, unless another writer wants to come in and continue to tell the story, it will be the final season.” This sounds great, giving permission. Come on, writers! Offer some scripts up – let it be a long runner like Criminal Minds…. Love this serial.

  16. Brandy says:

    Jonathan Demme directed my 2 facotire episodes of this show imo. They were Reckoning and Eden. With his direction and some writers who will really delve into these characters plus the advertising on Netflix that the show really deserves, this could be one of the most successful shows out there. I feel bad that I found out about it late or I wouldve used social media to share how much I love this show before it was taken away. I hate that Netflix and TV are full of stupid long running crime dramas that no one I even know watches but this awesome, amazing show is cancelled when it was sooo sooo good!
    Anyways, So, unless another writer wants to come in and continue to tell the story, it will be the final season…. THERE ARE SO MANY WRITERS ON ARCHIVEOFOUROWN.COM who have stellar ideas of how this story can progress.. I am no writer but they could do multi flash backs of the time after Linden left Holder when she was gone the 5 yrs. Show their lives immed after she left. Then continue doing flashbacks until they get to them reuniting. Then move forward with a new case, the real reason she returns. Basically the series ended open. Considering this is an adaption of another show, maybe some ingenious writers will take on this challenge. I just hope that Mireille Enos and Joel Kinnaman are open to reprising their roles.

  17. Me and bobby brown says:

    I can’t bare to let these two go. Holden to me is like Edward Cullen was to the Tweens. I have to see more of him though mostly his character.
    Linden is a fantastic formidable woman. And feel so safe in the world whilst she is a detective.
    My fantasy reality boundaries are crossing over which can only mean that these actors are so good I cannot decide if I love them or their characters.
    Please do not end this series.

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  19. Betty merrell says:

    Keep linden and holder going. I wanted so much to see them in love and together. No matter what their lives hold! More series!! To good to end