We’re almost half-way through series three of The Bridge (waaah!) and it has been really excellent so far – twisting this way and that, tons of new characters to digest and pore over, as well as THREE cases for the rapidly unravelling Saga and Henrik to solve. Yes, three. The Clown Killer case takes centre stage, but bubbling under the surface are two cold cases – that of Saga’s sister Jennifer and now Henrik’s missing wife and two children. This series is certainly ambitious if nothing else. Here are five things I picked up on from episodes three and four.
Henrik’s mystery revealed
Ever since I saw Saga’s new-new partner Henrik in last week’s opening duo of episodes, I knew something was fishy was going on with him. He lived in a good-looking house, with a beautiful wife and two energetic daughters. But there was something amiss. He often got into bed alone, he chomped down pills like they were Skittles and, most bewilderingly, the went out as a member of a singles club and met women and sex with them. His wife felt like she was on the whispy, slightly spectral side, looming large in hallways, always offering a benevolent, non-committal smile. One of our readers suggested that his wife and kids were River-style manifests and they were, in fact, dead. I was edging towards this theory myself, but last night it was confirmed. Henrik (and Saga), involved in a tense stand-off with psycho handyman Rikard at Lise’s place, used the line (or something like), “when you lose children everything changes” in his negotiations with the assailant, which suggested he spoke from experience. In the final scenes of the fourth episode, Henrik asked Saga to look into a cold case – that of a missing woman and two young children. His wife and daughter.
Saga and Henrik’s tryst
Well now, who saw this coming? Could these two damaged people end up together? Saga, after hearing about the singles club Henrik had had success in, decided she wanted a piece of that pie and stride into the next meeting (at a greyhound-racing course) to weave her magic with the single men-folk. Her chat-up lines were characteristically terse, freaking out one guy with her direct proposition. At the end of the night Saga and Henrik ended up alone, and eventually they decided the best thing to do was to have sex with each other. They couldn’t go back to his, Henrik said, so they ended up at Saga’s, where the Swedish detective issued forth a set of love-making rules: no kissing, no caressing, oral sex is fine, she only like missionary position with her legs at a particular angle… Saga’s sexual proclivities interest me (not in that way) – they exhibit another way she likes to keep control of a world she once lost control of. Having sex to achieve orgasm as purely as a means to an end is like eating food purely for fuel (which she also does). No kissing, no caressing… she doesn’t like to feel emotion. She’s scared by it. The big question though: will Henrik and Saga’s relationship develop into something else? Can it develop into something else?
Is Linn the new Saga?
I already like Linn, Hans’ temporary replacement (let’s hope Hans pulls through). It would have been easy for Hans Rosenfeldt to write a character that conformed to one of the Police Boss stereotypes (especially the shouty, unempathetic one), but instead he’s written a well-rounded, believably human character in Linn. With everyone extremely tense and emotional because of the Hans situation – none more so than Saga and Lillian – she has been a voice of calm, even though this has made her clash with her strung-out colleagues who have close relationships with Hans. Saga, especially, doesn’t quite know how to deal with Linn, who, on the one hand, is firm but on the other caring and calm. When Linn decides it would be a good thing for Saga to go to her father’s memorial service, there was a big negative reaction. So no, Linn isn’t the new Saga, but she’s displaying mild levels of Saga in her pragmatism in a place where everyone has lost their minds.
Choosing father figures
Which brings me neatly onto… Saga. Poor Saga. Traumatised by the case itself, she’s also extremely traumatised by the re-emergence of her mother, her sister Jennifer’s case and now the death of her father. From what we can gather so far Saga was convinced her parents were making her and her sister sick (Munchausen by proxy syndrome), and took it upon herself to extricate them from their parents’ grasp. The inference is that she got this wrong. But the damage had been done and she had grown up without a conventional father figure. Until Hans came along. Saga had, again, threatened to lose it in episode three, when she melted down to another twitching, frantic re-ordering the glasses in the kitchen cupboard. (More superb acting from Sofia Helin.) When Linn drove her out to her father’s memorial Saga had a choice – forgive and forget and pay her respects to her deceased father or go to see Hans in hospital. The fact that she went to Hans, held his hand and spoke to him tenderly (or as tenderly as Saga ever can) told us there was only one father figure in her life.
There are new characters
Lots of new characters. There was Morten’s ex-army buddy Lukas, who was running some sort of racket, which involved young couple Marc and Jeanette, up to their eyeballs in debt. Lukas recognised Henrik, and this recognition was seemingly reciprocated but not admitted by the detective. Maybe, just maybe, Lukas – although being built up as a suspect in the Clown Killer case – might have something to do with the disappearance of Henrik’s family? Oh, and Jeanette? Jjust give Marc the push, yeah? He’s a massive dick. Add in housing tycoon Anna Ekdahl and her boy-band-looking toyboy,as well as motivational speaker Sandberg (who euthenised his father at the start of the fourth episode) and his number one fan Anneka, AND Freddie (Nicolas Bro, who British viewers last saw in series two of The Killing) and it’s all kicking off.
A few other random things:
- John, who is fast becoming one of my favourite characters, has THE BEST voice. The way he said, in a very deliberate and slowed-down way, the word ‘Knightrider’ was so great!
- Was it Marc? Was it Rickard? Was it the boyband guy who was having an affair with Anna Ekdahl? These three young blonde-haired Scandinavian guys looked so alike!.
- Saga explaining the difference between a ‘verrrloggg’ and a ‘berrrloggg’ to Lillian was priceless.