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'The Killing' keeps it all in the family

Danette Leeds (Amy Seimetz) and Bullet (Bex Taylor-Klaus) on "The Killing."

It was all about family on AMC’s “The Killing” this week, with virtually every key storyline revolving around motherhood, fatherhood, or the effect that moms and dads have on their kids — and vice versa, for that matter — even when they don’t realize it. That’s not to say that there weren’t other key developments, including the abrupt disappearance of Angie at the end of the episode and the sudden decision to consider Pastor Mike as a suspect, but this was an installment that was about more than just the flashy moments.

Too Little, Too Late?
Despite last week’s ominous conclusion, Danette Leeds managed to move fast and escape from Joe Mills, but she’s so crazed when she arrives at the police station that she’s taken into custody. When Linden arrives, she tries to stay angry at her, but she quickly realizes that Danette’s finally — if belatedly — become legitimately worried about her daughter, which is particularly depressing given that the transition has come at a point where the likelihood of Kallie still being alive is dropping ever lower all the time. The depth of Danette’s concern becomes evident when she even goes so far as to reach out to Bullet and asks her for help in her search, resulting in a bit of bonding between them, but when Bullet says, “She’ll be all right,” and Danette says, “Yeah,” it’s painfully obvious that neither of them believes it.

Goodbye, Alton; Hello, Dad
In the wake of being granted forgiveness by his siblings for having killed his parents, Alton decides that he’s had just about as much prison as he can take, and Seward, in a slightly twisted yet strangely heartfelt gesture, stands by and lets his friend “escape” by hanging himself in his cell. With family on his mind, Seward requests a visit with his father, who — shocker! — is also in jail. Although viewers finally learn who hooked Seward up with the razor blade a few episodes back (now there’s a dad who knows how to pick gifts for his kid), the visit proves a waste of time for Seward, who seems reasonably horrified to discover that his father thinks he’s actually been a pretty decent parent, having taught his son how to be a man, snapping back at his dad on the way back to his cell, “Dying in an orange jumpsuit doesn’t make you a man!”

Proud Moments in Parenting
Speaking of Sewards and their kids, Linden’s been called out for having visited Seward’s son at his school, but in the process of getting an earful from the boy’s foster parents, she picks up on a piece of information that hadn’t previously emerged in their investigation: Young Adrian has long had a tendency to sleep in the closet. Putting two and two together, Linden and Holder rush off to commit a “class-A felony” (Holder’s words) by breaking into the former crime scene, but the end result is the discovery that Adrian saw his mother’s murderer…and it wasn’t Seward. In a desperate attempt to get access to what Adrian knows, since Skinner’s not having any of it, Linden visits Seward and begs for his assistance, admitting that she realizes he’s innocent of his wife’s murder. He snaps and storms away, screaming, “You came to this realization three years after the fact, just 12 days before I hang? Jesus!”

Well, he has a point.