Tag Archives: Swedish crime drama

NORDIC NOIR SVT releases Blackwater trailer

Swedish channel SVT has released a trailer for Händelser vid vatten (Blackwater) and has revealed the transmission date.

The crime drama, based on Kerstin Ekman’s novel of the same name, takes us back to midsummer eve, 1973. Annie and daughter Mia find two murdered tourists at the river’s edge near the village of Svartvattnet.

It stars Pernilla August, Alba August, Asta Kamma August and former Wallander actor Rolf Lassgård star.

It’s set to premiere on 15th January.


NORDIC NOIR Camilla Läckberg crime drama The Beach Hotel starts production

Viaplay has announced that Camilla Läckberg (pictured) will return to the streaming service to write a new crime series.

The Beach Hotel has been described by the streamer as a “thrilling blend of soap opera and crime drama.”

To celebrate his 60th birthday, Werner Gyllenmark holds a party at his beach hotel and invites his family, employees and even his arch-enemy, Egil Grip. But the event ends abruptly with an accident that shocks the entire town – and slowly but surely, explosive secrets emerge that some people will go to any lengths to keep hidden.

With production underway, filming takes place in the idyllic Swedish coastal town of Varberg, and the series will premiere exclusively on Viaplay in 2023.

Hjerson: Swedish Agatha Christie series gets transmission date

We’ve had our eyes on Swedish series Hjerson. based on a fictional character invented by the great Agatha Christie, he’s now starring in his own series.

And now we know when it’s going to be on in the UK, and where.

Walter Presents has acquired it for More4, and despite reports to the contrary, we can now reveal when it’s going to air.

Sven Hjerson was once a renowned criminal profiler; his hypersensitivity to people and places has given him razor-sharp perceptiveness. Throughout his career, he’s been involved in many high-profile cases, but suddenly he chose to retire from the spotlight, and no one knows why. Klara Sandberg is a reality TV producer of what some people might describe as trash. Somewhere within her, though, lurks the ambition to create meaningful editorial content.

She successfully pitches the idea of a true-crime show starring Hjerson, who would solve a real crime each week. The new show may reset Sandberg’s career and life, but there’s just one snag: she has never met Hjerson. Tracking him down, they both end up on a cruise ship where a young journalist is suddenly murdered, forcing a reluctant Hjerson to work with Klara as she attempts to convince him to work on her series.

Freely inspired by Christie’s books, each episode features a stand-alone case and also delves deep into the characters’ inner turmoil.

Hjserson: Friday 2nd September, 9pm, More4

NORDIC NOIR End Of Summer to be adapted by Viaplay

Stand by for a new Swedish crime drama.

End Of Summer, based on the best seller by Anders de la Motte, will premiere on the Viaplay streaming service in 2023 and will have six episodes.

On a summer’s evening in 1984, a five-year-old boy vanishes in rural southern Sweden. The police investigation fails to find the truth, leaving behind rumours, suspicion and a grieving family. Twenty years later, the boy’s older sister Vera is leading a group therapy session in Stockholm, when a young man describes a strangely familiar childhood memory of a disappearance. A shaken Vera travels home to her fractured family to uncover, once and for all, what really happened in the summer that never ended. 

de la Motte said: “It’s incredibly exciting that End of Summer will become a TV series. I’ve worked on this with Harmonica Films for a long time, and with Viaplay we’ve now made it happen. End of Summer is my first book to be filmed, and for personal reasons the story is very close to my heart. I’ve read the script and seen the cast list, and I’m very confident that this will be something really special.”

Filming will begin “shortly” in and around Helsingborg in Sweden.

NORDIC NOIR New Swedish crime series for Netflix

Streaming service Netflix is to make a new, Swedish crime series.

Based on Malin Persson Giolito’s new hit novel In Your Hands, the series is expected to hit screens in 2024.

The book’s blurb reads like this: “Snow falls over an empty playground. A 14-year-old boy lies face down in front of a swing set and his life flows out of him through a gaping wound in his head. Behind him stands his best friend with a smoking gun in his hand.When children commit terrible crimes, who is responsible?”

Persson Giolito will adapt the novel herself.

REVIEW Beck (S8 E4/4)

When the passengers on a bus are massacred, Beck faces one of his most harrowing cases – but does the key to the crime lie closer to home than he imagines?

This has been a rattling good season, and The Crying Cop ends it in style. The action starts with an anti-police riot after a young boy is accidentally shot by cops – a firebomb is thrown and two riot squad officers are injured. Smarmy Klas Fredén goes on TV to justify the police action – but there’s a horrific sequel when a busload of passengers is machine-gunned. Were police cadets the target? Martin Beck’s grandson Vilhelm narrowly escapes being on the bus.

Ulf Kvant (Joakim Sällquist) and Ellinor Kristiansson (Elina Du Rietz), the two incompetent cops who were first on the scene, are well known to Beck, and their patchy report seems to be hiding something. They say that two men on a motorbike fled the scene, but a witness claims that he didn’t hear a motorbike, and his dog didn’t bark – shades of Sherlock Holmes’ curious case of the dog in the night-time.

Ballistics reports from the scene confirm what we suspected – some of the ammunition used was police issue.  

Beck questions old activist Börje Järnlund (Jakob Eklund) about possible motives, and is told that video evidence from the anti-police riot has gone missing – could this contain a motive for the massacre?

Jenny questions a colleague of one of the victims, and has a fling with her – will this put an end to her relationship with her girlfriend? Oskarr’s main concern seems to be whether this means his sperm donation has been wasted.

Alex closes in on Klas Fredén, who she suspects of concealing the video evidence – in fact this shows that the petrol bomb thrower was incompetent cop Kvant, presumably acting on Fredén’s orders to stir up trouble.

When an incandescent Beck has Kvant and Kristiansson suspended, Kvant goes rogue, and we discover that he massacred the bus passengers to silence a police witness. Tying up Kristiansson and heading for the funeral of the victim of the police shooting with his machine gun, Kvant is fired up with resentment over Beck and Fredén’s career success.

Now, if Klas Fredén were to take a bullet, few tears would be shed, but it’s Beck who seems to be in Kvant’s sights – only for him to be overpowered by Börje Järnlund. What he was doing wandering about in the bushes isn’t explained, presumably going for a pee.

In a final scene, we see Freden disposing of the video evidence of his crimes – he’s finally crossed the line from being merely insufferable to being criminally liable. Let’s hope he gets his comeuppance before too long. Kvant, after all, is still alive and able to finger him.

Martin’s faith in the force may be shaken, but grandson Vilhelm is made even more determined to be a good cop.

With Jenny’s girlfriend’s IVF treatment seemingly being successful, she will have to face up to parenthood, though with Viktor’s sperm in the mix, goodness knows what the result will be. Alex and Josef revive their affair, though we can’t see that one ending in domestic bliss.

Martin’s eccentric neighbour Grannen has a thankfully small contribution in this episode, limited to reassuring Beck that he is the friendly face of policing. Well, yes, friendly if miserable.

It’s a depressing episode, with all the needless death and suffering basically brought about by the police. Some reviewers have marked it down for ‘political correctness’, but they forget that Beck has always been a very political series. Kristiansson & Kvant might have made a good sitcom, were it not for the tragic conclusion.  

This has been a fast-moving and satisfying series, slightly tempered by the absence of ginger giant Kristofer Hivju as Steinar Hovland in the second half. Teasing us with appearances in episodes one and two then leaving him out for the rest of the series seems mean.

With Martin Beck considering leaving active service for a life as a tutor in the police college, we don’t know quite what to expect from the next series, which started shooting in February. We’d certainly like to see more of enigmatic technical expert Ayda Çetin (Elmira Arikan), who we’re sure must have a rich and fruity private life.

But with the momentum of this season behind it, we’ll be happy to sign on for another gloom-fest in Season Nine.

Chris Jenkins

Episode rating

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Series rating

Rating: 4 out of 5.




Beck is shown on BBC Four and BBC iPlayer in the UK

Walter Presents announces Rig 45: Murder At Sea

Walter Presents has acquired Swedish series Rig 45: Murder At Sea.

This series has been floating around for a few years now, but it finally makes it to the UK thanks to Walter.

Following a fatal accident on Rig 45, Benthos Oils send their damage regulator Andrea out to the rig to document the accident.

It’s Christmas and the rig is shut down for maintenance, only manned by a small skeleton crew consisting of seven people when Andrea arrives by helicopter. After arriving at the rig Andrea soon realises that this isn’t going to be a routine investigation. All of the crew members carry secrets and Andrea starts to suspect that it might not have been an accident after all.  Following a second accident, communications to mainland are cut by a suspected sabotage.

To make matters worse, a hurricane roars in making transportation to and from the rig impossible: Andrea is stuck on board with a killer. But who among them is it, and will she catch them before there are no crew left at all?

It’s got a great multi-national ensemble cast, too – Scottish actor Gary Lewis, Ciarán McMenamin, David Dencik, Lorcan Cranitch, the great Søren Malling, Natalie Gumede and Filip Berg.

It begins on 24th June on All4.

Beck (S8 E3/4)

Martin Beck and his team do a Jack Bauer in this tense siege drama, acted out in real time. Will morning TV turn into a bloodbath, and if so, will it be good for the ratings?

Alex is appearing on a morning TV chat show together with a businessman, Tormalm (Dag Malmberg), whose charity enterprises, we are led to believe, conceal shady if not criminal business practices.

When a security guard, Peter (Joakim Natterqvist), pulls a gun and locks down the studio, Tormalm escapes. Peter gives the cops just 58 minutes to return him – but what’s his beef with Tormalm, and why the time limit? The clock ticks down, 24-style, though we’re not sure that anyone is particularly keeping track of whether the events unfold in real time or not.  

As their obnoxious boss Klas Fredén points out, this isn’t a case for the Beck Group, as there hasn’t been a homicide – but it looks like there might be, and Alex is involved, so Beck ignores his boss, and assigns the team to dig into the background of the hostage taker and Tormalm. (Martin and his team defy their boss so often that in reality they would all be on suspension for ever, and lose their pensions every week).

The on-site tactical officer seems quite happy to take guidance from old hound Martin, but tensions and temperatures in the studio rise and the softie presenters and crew start to lose their cool. Alex tries to keep everyone calm, but as the old ‘snipers in the air ducts’ plan unfolds, shots are fired and blood is spilled.

Josef goes rogue in an attempt to get Tormalm to return to the studio, against the wishes of his shrewish wife Helen (Ingela Lund, for some reason playing the part as English). Tormalm finally complies, though this touch of conscience doesn’t seem to mark any real change of heart.

Jenny and Oskar, meanwhile, unravel the hostage taker’s motivation – his diabetic daughter has been kidnapped to force him into his acts. But who’s behind it? Not a red herring political activist, it turns out, but a cleaner in the studio whose family were killed when one of Tormalm’s shoddy buildings collapsed. Alex tries to talk her down, but with studio security breached, the tactical squad arrives and the cleaner is tragically gunned down.

The ‘reluctant hostage taker’ plot seems a bit familiar – surely it’s the story of The Man Who Knew Too Much, or something with Nicolas Cage – but here it unfolds with some originality.

You would have thought, though, with all this tragedy and unnecessary suffering on show, there would be no time for comic relief – but no, we have to endure Oskar’s excruciating offer to lend Jenny and her girlfriend some of his sperm, and a bizarre closing anecdote from Martin’s neighbour Grannen. If looked at in the proper way, Grannen’s homily might sum up the moral of the tale – ‘a good man is one who shares his sausages with others’. But to be honest, we could have done without it, in what otherwise would have been a particularly gritty, moving and politically insightful offering from Beck.

Chris Jenkins

Rating: 3 out of 5.



Beck is shown on BBC Four and BBC iPlayer in the UK

The 10 Best Crime Dramas This Week (Monday 16th – Sunday 22nd May)

It’s pretty much as you were this week, with continuing series like Shining Girls, Bosch, Beck and Y Golau all available. But we also get a new episode of Grace – I thought I had a handle on when this series was being played out, but no, ITV has done a number on me again. Enjoy!

No synopsis available.
Friday 20th May, Apple+ TV

S1 E7&8/8

No synopsis available.
Friday 20th May, Freevee

S1 E2/6

Cat continues with her inquiries, which makes her more unpopular with each question she asks. As the news of Joe Pritchard being released spreads through Llanemlyn, Sharon is more determined than ever to get answers – despite police warnings. Meanwhile, Joe is trying his best to cope with life outside prison and move on from his past.
Sunday 22nd May, 9pm, S4C

S8 E3/4

Alex Beijer’s participation in a morning TV show turns into a nightmare when an unlikely hostage drama arises in the studio.
Saturday 21st May9pm BBC Four

S2 E3/6

The hunt for serial killer The Birdman intensifies as Lola and Jackson desperately search for a link to Freddy, who is playing a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse with the killer
Thursday 19th May, 9pm, Alibi

S1 E1-3/8

the lives of a group of college best friends are forever changed after a celebratory weekend ends up with one of them dead. Now, 20 years later, the remaining five are reluctantly reunited by a threat that puts their seemingly perfect worlds at risk.
Friday 20th May, Apple+ TV

7 The Nordic Murders *NEW UK PREMIERE EPISODE*
S3 E2

Dr Brunner’s mother dies at a luxurious retirement estate. He has been in a relationship with the director of nursing at the estate, Kerstin Matthies, so is in complete shock when it transpires that she may have been mistreating his parent. Soon after, the director disappears. Dr Brunner suspects foul play, but has he himself played a part in Matthies’ disappearance?
Friday 20th May, 9pm, More4

S1 E5/8

No synopsis available.
Thursday 19th May, 9pm, Sky Atlantic

S2 E3

A body is dredged up from the English Channel, setting in motion a truly disturbing investigation that forces Detective Superintendent Roy Grace to ask himself just how far someone might go to save the ones they love. 
Sunday 22nd May, 8pm, ITV

10 Who Killed Sara? *NEW UK PREMIERE SERIES*

Hell-bent on exacting revenge and proving he was framed for his sister’s murder, Álex sets out to unearth much more than the crime’s real culprit.
Wednesday 18th May, Netflix