Last night something amazing happened throughout Scandinavia and other parts of Europe – the premiere of series three of The Bridge (or Bron, Broen and Silta as I’ve been seeing on Twitter) was broadcast last night (Sunday 27th September). It’s exciting for all Bridge fans in the UK (of which there are many), but sadly we won’t be seeing it for another couple of months. At the end of this post you’ll find news of the UK’s transmission date, but in the meantime I’ve collated some reviews from Swedish newspapers. Some are glowing, some aren’t, but one thing is clear – in Martin’s absence (*cries*) this third run will be all about Saga Norén.
Warning: there are spoilers ahead (mild turning into medium on the spoiler scale), and the reviews have been translated via Google Translate
According to preliminary reports viewing figures from SVT 1.48 million people watched. So many have never seen an episode of The Bridge during the two seasons.
And then its review:
[Broen III] provides greater scope for Saga Norén and Sofia Helin takes the chance to lift her to new levels. It has more humour, but also more dark moments. I have previously sighed ver the crime genre’s fascination with – and often biased portrait of – human character with autism special disorder, but when Helon plays everything out, she manages the feat of making his character into a complex and believable human being. Even now I want to see Saga Norén in a fourth season, so much she has grown.
The actual plot, then? It is actually somewhat less interesting than our heroine’s fate, but some are killed with bizarre details in each section. The first episode opens with a macabre arranged archaeological site, which quickly followed by the next. Initially, it seems to be about hate crimes , as one of the victims is a known lesbian lobbyist and another a priest who consecrates homosexuals, but it would not bridge if there were several sharp turns during the investigation .
Some scenes are flat and the occasional supporting role carries not really, but overall Bridge III, well played and the script clever designed. One of the turns, as revealed in the fourth section, is so elegantly designed we erupted into spontaneous applause io my sofa afterwards. This doesn’t happen every day when I look at crime drama. Well played, Bron!
Elsewhere, in Svenska Dagbladet things weren’t so positive:
The problem with The Bridge 3 is that the genre is too worn. It is certainly exciting but the audience is ready for something new.
Last month’s escalating refugee crisis has exposed the Nordic countries’ relations in its purest form. We have the good Swedes, the evil Danes and the crazy Finns (last week reported demonstrators throwing stones and fireworks against staff from the Red Cross and refugees, a person must have been wearing a Ku Klux Klan outfit). Maybe next season, if there is one, could The Bridge deal with countries’ differing views on refugees? But the show’s third season revolves around a quite controversial topic: gender politics and freedom of expression.
Saga Norén is again forced to cooperate with a Danish colleague who is unable to absorb the word “hen” (see, so different we are!). A well-known lesbian, Danish gender studies teacher is found murdered in Malmö placed in a bizarre scene: around a dinner table has no dummies placed to imagine a father and two children, the traditional nuclear family into the death.
But above all, the third season of The Bridge initially mines dozens of detective novels when lots of characters and loose threads are introduced (half seem to be sidetracked). The action scenes are mute, imagery trite, shady people cuddling with snakes and spiders – spiders! It is boring, the plot becomes is suffering from being increasingly unlikely and the series is generally characterized by a clumsy and blatant acting.
There is no subtlety or nuance. The characters are predominantly stereotypical caricatures, making unlikely choices, credibility is zero. Saga continues to confuse the surroundings with her lack of social understanding. A person in her situation ought reasonably to have succeeded in shaping a social strategy, it may seem. At the same time threatens Saga controlled persona to rupture when her dramatic family history makes itself felt.
Let’s look at a few tweets.
(Strong work from our Nordic neighbours, feels stronger than the second season)
(Just seen the first episode of The Bridge, still in shock at how cruel a show can be)
Now, over in the Sydsvenska Dagbladet – a Malmö-based newspaper – they said:
The Bridge is a bit like a piece of furniture from Ikea. Cool Nordic, nicely designed. Functional. Ingenious construction. Not very original, and not built to last very long. But something that works in most living rooms worldwide.
Some of the show’s soul has disappeared. Martins warm charisma balanced perfectly Saga Norén’s rigid and socially incapable policewoman.
We journalists have previously seen four episodes of season three. I hope I do not reveal too much when I say that Saga (Sofia Helin) gets a new Danish police colleague. Smart enough, the series creators have chosen a completely different type than Martin – someone who hides secrets and with his sharp analytical skills more reminiscent of Saga himself. If Martin and Saga was an odd relationship, one senses this time rivalry and sexual tension. But the focus of the new season is clearly on Saga, whose tightly controlled facade threatens to crack when her hated mother shows up after 20 years.
Elswhere, the official Bridge facebook page posted this neat little teaser video:
Now we come to the UK’s transmission date. I had hoped that BBC4 would show it straight after Beck (which has been pretty good), but it seems no… I saw a few Twitter conversations yesterday naming 21st November as the date, which means the second series of Arne Dahl will come before The Bridge. I also spoke to someone in the know at this weekend’s Radio Times Festival, who also mentioned 21st November as the date.
In an age of UK broadcasters transmitting US shows mere hours after their US transmission, I’m wondering why, if this news is true, the BBC lag behind, especially with such an anticipated series. The only thing I can think of is that there are contract and rights issues in play, but I’m sure UK Bridge fans will be a little disappointed at the two-month delay. However, please bear in mind that this date has not been confirmed by the BBC.
For all our news and review on The Bridge, go here