Forbrydelsen (Eng. The Killing) (2007) by Soren Sveistrup

My attention span for watching TV programmes has become progressively worse since the advent of easily portable internet capable devices but remembering the hype about this show from almost 10 years ago, I decided that something with subtitles would force me to concentrate 100% on what I was watching and stop me being distracted.

Episode 1 of 20 begins with DCI Sarah Lund’s final day on the Copenhagen police force before she is due to move to Sweden with her son Mark to start a new life with her boyfriend Bengt. However the finding of a video store card (remember those?) and a woman’s underwear leads to the discovery of a vicious rape and murder. Initially forced to stay on by her boss, she ultimately becomes obsessed with the case, with serious ramifications for both her professional and personal life.

Her partner, Jan Meyer, is the man who was due to replace her, which gives their relationship a distinct edge, exacerbated by the fact that he is a heavy smoker and she is trying to quit.

The story unfolds primarily around three groups of people: the police, the victim’s family, and, for reasons which quickly become clear, those involved in the election for city mayor.

For fans of the Golden Age, there is a neat dying message clue – which I think an observant person may be able to make use of, not that I did – and a most unusual alibi.

Each episode ends in some form of cliffhanger and after watching an episode every day I binged the last eight over three evenings so it definitely does draw you in. Unbelievably when originally screened in Denmark, there was a six month break half-way through!

It hasn’t done much for my Danish – I could say thank you, wife, and answer the phone – but if you’re looking for something to wile away the long winter nights of lockdown phase 2 you could do a lot worse than give this a go and attempt to work out who killed Nanna Birk Larsen.




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