The Killing recap: The Cowardly Lyin'

Holder and Seward focus on Pastor Mike, Bullet and Lyrics' honeymoon doesn't last long, and Seward is shaken by his impending death
Ep. 06 | Aired Jul 7, 2013

WEIGHED DOWN The reality of Seward's execution starts to take hold.

Carole Segal/AMC

Amid all the Pastor Mike stuff, we saw a grim set of scenes involving Seward. First, an incredibly grueling interaction as Henderson tried to coax, then ultimately forced Seward to weigh in to determine the counterweight for his execution. As the reality of Seward's death began to sink in, he shook like a child atop the scale. Later, the inmate had a full-on rockstar-in-a-hotel-room freakout when Becker (joyfully goading Seward to pick his last meal) informed the prisoner it was too late to contact his lawyer to change his execution method. As Seward crumbled to the floor in a panting panic, Becker said callously, "Salisbury steak it is!"

Back at the SPD, Skinner reported the results of Holder's inquiry: Pastor Mike's real name was Mark Elwood, and he'd been arrested six years prior for kidnapping a 16-year-old girl in Tempe, Ariz. He was never convicted because the girl OD'd before she could testify.

Though Skinner ordered the detectives to pick up PM, the travel time offered up plenty of opportunity for the minister to have an overtly sinister conversation with Lyric, complete with lines like "People only see what they want to see" delivered in classic sociopathic whisper register. He might as well have come straight and said, "I am bad news, little girl!" Lyric got the picture, clutching the spoon she'd been using to eat ice cream and feebly lied, like so many clichéd horror heroines, that Bullet would be home any minute now.

Night had fallen by the time Holder and Linden arrived to an empty house -- save for the spoon and melted carton of ice cream on the kitchen table. Holder was predictably ticked-off, throwing an underling into a wall and muttering about how Pastor Mike was "a coward, preying on the weakest." For her part, Linden was kind of hilariously unsympathetic. She curtly told her partner, "Yeah, what are you gonna do about it? Hold it together!" Holder noted that that was easier said than done -- she should know. She basically told him, "You're right, my life sucks. So why don't you learn something from your screw-ups so you don't end up like me?"

SPD. Ms. Leeds met a woman whose daughter had been missing for seven years. The other mother had mostly made peace that she'd never see her daughter again and had come to see if she'd be able to ID the teen among the newly discovered bodies. Ms. Leeds, ever allergic to reality, insisted Kallie was still alive. To be fair, it's only been a few days, so it's natural she wouldn't have developed the sort of resigned tranquility of someone with seven years of acceptance under her belt, but it's all so disingenuous. Like, does she think she'll suddenly be Mother of the Year when Kallie returns? The other mother said of missing-persons cases: "Maybes are the hardest thing." But there's no maybe about this: You, Ms. Leeds, are a bad person and an even worse mother. (End rant.)

Back at the prison, I guess my "I see dead inmates" theory was indeed too fantastical because Seward's fellow inmate return in the custody of several guards. Seward had taken his advice about choosing his exit too literally, it turned out. The guy had been talking about forgiveness and salvation (not gas versus gallows); he urged Ray to choose to seek those. Speaking of choice, Becker walked around nearby, showing his son Seward's gallows and regaling the kid with all the macabre details. Even as he admitted he was breaking the rules for this little show-and-tell, he told th teen, "Right and wrong, Frankie: It's a choice."

NEXT: The underside of the tracks

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