The Killing Review: "Sayonara, Hiawatha" (Episode 2.09)
“This is it,” Linden says in a darkened construction site on the 10th floor of the casino’s hotel. “This is where it all began."
In the closing seconds of “Sayonara, Hiawatha” the case is as close to being solved as it ever has been. Gone are the red-herrings that led us to believe Richmond killed Rosie Larsen. Now we know that the tribe is covering up a murder that took place, but who?
The question comes at the tail end of The Killing’s latest offering. The build-up to it proves to be just as dramatic as the final moments, something the series has been lacking for quite some time. Each thread was carefully crafted to show us the emotional toll the past three weeks in the investigation has taken on everybody. This aspect has been touched upon before, but never as thoroughly as now.
Richmond’s emotions have been a rollercoaster ride. First he was a suspect, then cleared and then arrested. After being shot and paralyzed, he was cleared. Now, days before his election, he is asked by Linden and Holder to make a stance and truly help the investigation, which could hurt his slim chance of being elected mayor of Seattle. While his decision doesn’t necessarily seem as important as others made in the episode, the fact that so much time has been spent with this character makes me believe the once-accused character will have a vital role in bringing justice to Rosie Larsen.
No one would want that more that the Larsen family. Mitch is still AWOL while Stan tries to raise his two boys on his own. In a stand-out scene the eldest boy, upset over a recent school suspension and subsequent grounding, tells Stan that he hates him and is glad that Rosie is dead. If the chills went through the roof, they sure did when Stan replies that he hates his son and wishes he could have left like their mother. The scene lasts under 90 seconds, but resonates through every scene featuring the family after them. Eventually we see Stan in bed with his two boys; they had fallen asleep as he read to them. The occasion is interrupted by a phone call from Mitch. It looks like she is coming home as she reveals the fact that Rosie was planning on leaving Seattle for good, running away to enjoy life.
So if she was running away, why was she on the 10th floor of a casino’s hotel the night she died?
Linden asks the same question as she begins to piece together in the final tense moments. It was the first time my heart raced while watching the show in weeks. There are only four episodes left in this season, but it honestly feels like this truly is the beginning of season two. Everything that happened before this most definitely mattered, but somehow it feels like none of it did. The exposition that unfolded over the previous episodes built up, in one way or another, to Linden standing in this darkened room, the murder room, searching and finding a vital piece of evidence.
This is where it really begins—the investigation. We’ve been led on a wild goose chase with pieces of information that will add up in the end. The show finally regained the stride it lost since the first season finale’s final red-herring. Things makes sense again, and this episode is one to win back those who lost interest in The Killing.