Danish series Dicte might have stretched the bounds of credibility on numerous occasions, but it did feature a character that bucked the trend in so-called Nordic Noir – crime reporter Dicte Svendsen was messy, sociable, funny and hung out with a group of female friends that made you laugh and snort and feel for them. She was hugely likeable, as was Iben Hjejle, who played her. So it’s great news that series two is looming large on the horizon, and Channel 4 has now confirmed its transmission date.
Ninety-ninety-six’s Jägarna (The Hunters) was a medium-sized hit in its native Sweden. It told the story of a policeman from Stockholm who goes to Norrland to join his brother after their parents died. While there he started to work on a long-running case where deer have been poached and soon discovers that his brother is involved. Now it’s back, this time as a TV series.
Modus, which premiered in the UK just before Christmas 2016, was a good-looking if underwhelming Swedish thriller that investigated the links between a Christian religious fundamentalist group in the US and a nutjob lone operative causing death and destruction in Sweden. Series two is just around the corner, and on top of Kim Cattrell’s addition to the cast (she’s playing the US president), two more American actors have joined the cast.
The Bridge is currently filming in Sweden and Denmark and it’s very exciting really – we’re starting to get little drips of news filtering through from the set as the show gears up for its New Year’s Day transmission day (in northern Europe and the Nordic regions, at least). The news today is that Danish actor Mikael Birkkjær – who we all know and love from shows like The Killing and Borgen – has joined the cast of series four.
Wouldn’t you just bloody know it? It was my birthday when this news broke and I was out and about doing birthday-like things, so I was away from the computer and missed the news that the much-anticipated fourth – and last – series of The Bridge will indeed transmit in 2018 (my prediction that we’d see it in 2017 was off, but just by one day!) in an event-like slot on an event-like day in its native Sweden.
If you’ve read Our Charlotte’s First Look piece on Midnight Sun (have a read here), you will know this French/Swedish series is one to watch. The fact that we haven’t really had a really good Nordic Noir on these shores in 2017 means that all eyes are on this cross-regional, good-looking eight-parter, which might – just might – provide us with the series we’ve been looking for.
NB: Spoilers inside
One of the more eagerly awaited crime dramas of the year starts up on Sky Atlantic tonight. Midnight Sun is a French/Swedish effort, written and created by Måns Mårlind and Bjorn Stein (who have previous on The Bridge) and made by French powerhouse Canal+. It stars Leïla Bekhti as Kahina Zadi, a French police officer, who travels to Kiruna, a small mining community in the remote far north of Sweden to investigate a brutal murder of a French citizen. With the help of Anders Harnesk (Gustaf Hammarsten), a Swedish DA and a member of the Sami, an ancient, indigenous tribe of Scandinavia, they are faced with new killings. The initial murder turns out to be the tip of the iceberg. So far, so intriguing. But what makes this extremely interesting is the inclusion of the Sami in the series – that Scandinavian tribe of people who live in the far, far north and little is known about, certainly in the UK. So who are they? And what relationship do they have with the rest of the Nordic people? We asked our Swedish correspondant, Charlotte, to give us the lowdown.