The reason I mention that long-winded story is to illustrate a point. Real life is messy. Even when we make what we truly believe are the "right" decisions we don't always feel all that good about them. Sometimes to do what we think is right we end up hurting, albeit unintentionally, someone else. Even worse, sometimes we hurt someone doing what we think is right and then find out later that we were wrong. And that, as Aristotle would say, just plain sucks.
But it is the imperfect, wonderful world we all live in. Which brings me to AMC's fantastic 'The Killing'. A Danish import, 'Killing' follows the murder investigation of young woman in Seattle, Washington. The story is told in thirteen 1 hour episodes through the perspectives of the people whose lives are impacted by the murder and subsequent investigation, with special emphasis on lead investigator Sarah Linden (played picture-perfect by Mireille Enos). Amazingly, despite a fairly large cast, there is nary a flat character to be found. All the players are fleshed out, fully realized people with deep complexity and back-story. This allows the show to rise above a simple whodunit police procedural and really delve into just what a murder means to the people in the victim's life. It is alternately dark and gritty, inspirational, and heart breaking to watch these people cope with the loss and fear that surrounds this girls murder.
And that brings me back to my original point. The reason I love this show so much is because, unlike the many many many police procedurals out there, it is no fairy tale with all the bad guys punished and good guys victorious. It makes you wallow in the mud with the characters, encouraging you to feel all the frustration and confusion that they feel. It makes you want what they want, only to remind you that even good people and good decisions have consequences that are far less than ideal. This is the kind of show that you think about after it's over, asking yourself if you would have done this or that differently. But that deeply unsettled feeling you get is the digestive price you pay for such a rich, not-written-for-kids storyline, and is so worth it. There is really nothing quite like it on TV right now; I highly recommend it.