Review : Before We Die (S1 E6/10), Tuesday 20th February, Channel 4


NB Spoilers Inside
Now Inez’s identity is known to Hanna (finally!), it felt like Before We Die kicked up a gear this week as the varying strands of the investigation came together and threatened to break apart the Organised Crime Unit, whilst elsewhere Davor has the date from hell.

We were dropped back literally at the endpoint of the last episode this week with both Hanna and Christian struggling to come to terms with the revelation they have been conducting the informant relationship together. It’s fair to say neither handles it well; Hanna demands Tina drag Christian in to save his life, but the rest of the Inner Council want him to continue with the operation now Krajina is so close to conclusion. Meanwhile, Christian ignores his mother’s texts for the majority of the episode as his relationship with the Mimicas deepens – especially with Davor.

Davor doesn’t have the best of weeks either, but we do get closer to his character for the first time since the show began. We only ever really see him in his ruthlessly efficient gangster mode, and so the lighter moments when he shares a break with his lover Markus are a welcome respite and reveal an almost tender vulnerability beneath the surface. Alexi Manvelov plays this conflicting duality with a brooding intensity, and he gets to really engage with the character this week as a misplaced MDMA tablet in Davor’s drink leads him into a reckless action against small-time local drug dealer Dennis. Subsequently Davor goes missing and with Christian the only person who knows about his double life, he is able to glean from a rattled Markus that Dennis has a safehouse/brothel on the outskirts of the city. In a genuinely grim scene, Christian saves a barely conscious Davor from being raped (that’s two for two in the Mimica clan now) before shooting Dennis in the arm. Is Christian beginning to step over the line between being undercover and actual criminal? It certainly felt that way when a grateful Davor ‘promotes’ him from dishwasher to driver, but you also get the impression Davor wants to keep the only man who knows his secret a little closer for more pragmatic reasons than loyalty or gratitude.

Meanwhile it’s another grueling week in the investigation of Sara (remember her?) and Ulrik’s murders back at the OCU. Fausta is revealed to be sleeping with Kanehed (odd choice but takes all sorts I guess Fausta) who asks her to spy on Tina for him, as he caught her slipping on following up on leads in the Mobsters killings. Tina is having enough of an issue keeping Bjorn and Hanna civil to each other, as Bjorn’s disdain for Hanna’s parenting skills becomes more vociferous throughout the episode. It takes the shaggy detective’s cunning to pretend to be Hanna and actually, you know, apologise to Christian via text to get him back in the game again. The mother and son meet up for a heartfelt scene where they both re-commit to capturing those responsible for Sven’s murder – one of whom is the mole in the OCU itself.

That unknown mole supplies the location of the Delincuentos’ family safe-house to Davor, who uses it as leverage with Petter to organise a meet with his drug connection. Petter’s conflict as the aspiring Mobsters boss was well played by Christian Hillborg this week; clearly divided about his position (not surprising since he killed his way to get there), he eventually takes on the mantle of the Mobsters President in cold-blooded fashion as he led his gang to brutally murder Roger and his wife, and in doing so ignited the biker war his gang have been demanding since Sara’s murder.

Davor attends the meeting with Petter to discuss the Istanbul connection and there’s an unintentional comedy of errors involving Christian as he is immediately put in danger by his own mother, forcing him to install a listening device in his boss’s jacket before having him remove and replant a tracking device from Petter’s truck that the rest of the OCU are bearing down on. There was a slight feeling of Hanna testing him and his abilities in these scenes, and the pair looked like they were both having fun which came across as very odd considering the stakes. The transcript later reveals Davor intends to bring in 100 kilos of heroin into Sweden, but without the method behind it being known the Inner Council can only continue to rely on Christian’s intelligence to slowly reel in the Mimicas. Unfortunately for both Hanna and Christian, Stefan is staking out their meeting – again placing both mother and son in grave danger.

7 Comments Add yours

  1. Jeffrey L Tompkins says:

    One of the sub plots in Spiral became real life in Chicago.


  2. Carrie says:

    No wonder Hanna was demoted. She puts Christian in danger at every turn


    1. Andy D says:

      Yeah she’s not exactly Mum of the Year material!


      1. Carrie says:

        I think Bjorn may be playing a double game


  3. Andy D says:

    Bjorn seems the most likely in terms of dealing with Davor, he’s a bit of a shady cop anyway. Fausta and Rakel are the only other two detectives who’ve had real screen time and I don’t think it’s either of them anymore.


  4. Mike Sargent says:

    When Chridtian switched the tracker, why did the cop follow the car. He would have known it was the wrong car….


    1. Andy D says:

      I think he lost sight of it for a bit and presumed they’d switched cars. To be honest the rest of the squad are pretty useless so who knows…


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