The Killing Cannot Be Killed: Netflix Has Resurrected the Series for a Shortened Season 4

By Kaitlin Thomas

Nov 16, 2013

You know that scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail where Eric Idle is yelling, "Bring out your dead!" and the one guy is still alive and he's all, "I'm not dead yet!" Well, imagine that scenario, but pretend The Killing is the guy who's attempting to convince the world that he's not dead, that he's getting better, and the world is going, "No you're not. You'll be stone dead in a moment." Basically, what I'm trying to say is: The Killing is back, y'all, and you have Netflix to thank for it. 

Yes, it's true: The streaming service is resurrecting the twice-canceled AMC drama for a six-episode fourth and "final" season. AMC won't be involved; the episodes will air exclusively on Netflix. 

Let's run down a brief history of the show's life (and death) so far, just for fun:

APRIL 2011: The Killing premieres on AMC to rave critical reviews

JUNE 2011: After screwing with viewers heads by feeding them multiple red herrings, The Killing's Season 1 finale royally pisses off everyone on the internet by not solving the central mystery of who killed Rosie Larsen.

APRIL 2012: The Killing returns for Season 2, but struggles to earn back the viewers it lost after Season 1.

JUNE 2012: The Killing's extremely convoluted second season wraps up with a finale that finally reveals Rosie's murderer

JULY 2012: The Killing is canceled by AMC... for the first time

AUGUST 2012: Rumors begin to swirl that Netflix or DirecTV might want to resurrect the show.

NOVEMBER 2012: Rumors continue to swirl that the show might return, via a partnership between AMC and Netflix

JANUARY 2013: The Killing is renewed by AMC for a third season. Netflix eventually agrees to pays for some of the production costs in exchange for earlier-than-usual streaming rights. 

JUNE-AUGUST 2013: The Killing Season 3 shows much improvement over Seasons 1 and 2, ultimately impressing critics but only doing so-so in the ratings. 

SEPTEMBER 2013: The Killing is canceled by AMC for the second time in its short life. Fools that we are, we apparently tempted fate with headline, "AMC Cancels The Killing (Maybe) Probably for Good This Time."

NOVEMBER 2013: Netflix saves the show from the grave yet again. 

And that's how we got to where we are today, kids. Stars Mireille Enos and Joel Kinnaman will both return for Season 4, as will the series' writing staff. Production will begin in February 2014.

Welcome back, Stephen Holder, I guess you were just too precious to be locked away forever.


This is probably a stupid question, but are you excited to see one last case? Or would you prefer the The Killing to stay dead?

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  • michellecastelli9 Oct 18, 2014

    LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS SHOW!!! It's like reading a great novel!! It's an insomniacs dream!!

  • jonkeriksson Jul 04, 2014

    Can't believe I missed this news as I'm here almost every day! However, GREAT F*CKING NEWS!!!

  • twilliams606 Jan 02, 2014

    I just finished the season 3 finale and came here to see if the show would be returning. So happy to hear that it will, and Netflix doesn't have commercials :)
    I love this show; the characters, the scenery, the storylines, just everything about it. is so refreshing to see a show in which the actresses don't look like supermodels and the actors don't look like they just stepped out of a sexy hunks calendar LOL Although, I wouldn't mind seeing one that included Holden ;)

  • geoffmaze Dec 03, 2013

    Score one for Netflix. Just finished watching S3 on Neftlix, after watching S1/2 over the course of the previous few months. Great series, S3 was an improvement on an already good show. Glad to see NF has the stones to bring it back even if only 6 eps. let them finish the show appropriately.

  • efilaz Nov 19, 2013

    THANK GOD !!!!!!!!!!

  • canine Nov 18, 2013

    Hmm... Netflix should buy the Danish show instead and launch that with english subtitles, a way better series ...then agaibn, I am biased being danish and all :-)

  • amykappel1 Nov 17, 2013

    Yeay!! Bring on the drums..!

  • Daniel-Jackson Nov 17, 2013

    I never watched this show and I don't even know what it is about, BUT I am more than happy that Netflix is stepping in and saving (apparently) good shows that don't get the ratings the cable stations or networks dream of.
    If I would be living in the US I would SO subscribe to Netflix.

    Now, let's go even further, Netflix:

  • WithoutPopcorn Nov 17, 2013

    Nice. I always found it laughable that people were pissed at The Killing's First season because it didn't resolve the Rosie Larsen Case at its end, yet Homeland did essentially exactly the same thing with Brody's case, by not resolving that in its first season but got praised for it.

  • BrianGray4 Nov 18, 2013

    The Killing made promises about its first season it obviously didn't intend on keeping(giving us the killer in season 1 finale), Homeland made no such promise.

  • antmorris3511 Nov 17, 2013

    apples and oranges..

  • WithoutPopcorn Nov 17, 2013

    Not really. Subject matter is different no doubt but the way its structured not so much.

    **SPOILERS** Throughout the first season of HOMELAND, we were thrown red herrings constantly and we didn't know if Brody was really going to carry out his mission or if Carrie was going to get him. There were sub stories, but a main one being Dana Brody's teenager exploits and her relationship with her dad. At the end, we still didn't know what to think of Brody (trust him or not) and Carrie in her ill state would presumably still have to go after Brody on her own next season.

    Turn to The Killing, and we were thrown red herrings constantly and we didn't know who the real killer and we didn't know if we could trust Holden or not.. Nor did we know if Linden was going to solve this case and get the real killer. There was a weak sub story with Linden's son and his teenager exploits and with his relationship with his mom. At the end we didn't know if we could trust Holden based on Linden's findings and we are led to presume Linden is on her own in going after the Killer next season.** END SPOILERS**

    Both shows were slow burns (The Killing a bit slower), had great acting and some fun twists. Again, It amazes me how HOMELAND got much more praise for doing basically the same thing.

  • antmorris3511 Nov 18, 2013

    I liked homeland a lot more. It never struck me as a show where cases are solved. It struck me as a ''war on terror'' type ongoing struggle. I don't think there's ever been a murder case that took two seasons to solve in the history of television. Homeland was slow and laden with herrings but its something I would watch on dvd. I don't want to keep getting enthralled with red herrings that do nothing but stall for time, and there was just too much of that on the killing. Really thats the only thing I didnt like about the show. Way too much of it.

  • itsmemadie01 Nov 17, 2013

    The Killing has impeccable chemistry with characters Holder and Linden. The story sucked at some point (specially the Rosie Larsen case) but the leads kept things afloat. But these two and the gloomy, cloudy Seattle backdrop made me smile that there's still six episode to look up to...

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