5. The Killing

Network: AMC
Stars: Mirielle Enos, Joel Kinnaman, Billy Campbell, Michelle Forbes, Brent Sexton, Brendan Sexton III, Brandon Jay McLaren, Eric Ladin, Kristin Lehman

For its first three or four weeks, AMC’s bleak freshman drama The Killing was a revelation. Centered around the whodunit murder of teenager Rosie Larson, the Veena Sud-created hit started off with one hell of a pilot, continued on with a couple of riveting, plot-developing episodes, and promised a payoff that would blow viewers’ minds. But then Sud and company apparently realized that they had no clue where the fuck the story was going, opting to drain The Killing of all its intrigue and instead wasting multiple episodes on lame red herrings, not to mention an entire late-game hour without any connection whatsoever to Rosie’s case.

And, really, all would’ve been forgiven if The Killing’s much-anticipated season finale would’ve resolved matters in the expected way—meaning, with shock and awe. It’s too bad that Sud foolishly fancies herself as the next David Chase, though; rather than give viewers what they deserve (i.e., an actual resolution), The Killing’s last hour concluded without any answers, a la The Sopranos’s last episode. Only in this case, Sud’s bullshit reactions, in which she pointed out that first season answers were never promised, will never seem brave or progressive.