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Nordic Noir



1          In a small Icelandic fishing port, a ferry docks. That same day a dismembered body is found in the river, sparking an investigation and a call to Reykjavik for detective reinforcements to assist the small local police force. With the ferry held in dock and a bad snowstorm threatening to cut off the town, chief of police Andri is under pressure to deliver results quickly.

Iceland, in Winter,  looks a really inhospitable place if this series is anything to go by. A torso’s discovery led Andri to board a Danish ferry and ask to look around. The captain was uncooperative and demanded a Danish court order implying there was something to hide. Andri was too busy to pick up his own children from school in the middle of a snowstorm. It was just as well their grandmother stepped into the breach. We’d already seen his children be awful to a little red-haired boy in the school corridor and as his father had not phoned there was an implied link between the case and the children.

Andri was forced to confront his broken marriage when his wife brought her new partner to her mother’s house. He used the murder as an excuse not to play happy families but not before his ex spotted that he still wore his wedding ring.

The captain – played by Bjarne Henriksen of The Killing fame – upped the anti by turning off the heating aboard the ferry and the passengers demanded some action from the police. Throw in  a little human trafficking, some snowdrifts, some falling snow-by-torchlight underscored by ominous minor key music and there you have the first episode. Even the children realised everyone was trapped.


2          With no police support able to arrive from Reykjavik until the snowstorm clears, Andri and his colleagues need to work fast. It seems a hopeless situation, but with a suspect in custody awaiting questioning and a body awaiting forensic tests, Andri is desperate for them to prove themselves and make a breakthrough in the case.

A Lithuanian mafia member was captured and in jail awaiting questioning by police support from Reykjavik. The school had been turned into a refuge for the ferry passengers which provided Andri with the opportunity to question everyone. Unfortunately a camera crew – using a laptop link – arrived and expected, and received, a live interview. Andri’s daughter chatted when he arrived home and suggested they all live together with the mother and her new lover, what could he do but smile?

The Danish court order came more quickly than expected so over the breakfast buffet Andri served the captain however Andri suspected the prevarication had been due to the trafficking rather than a need to follow protocols.

A new port construction in the area would put Iceland midway between trade routes between China and the US. It looked very tempting but the financial collapse of 2008 had made people mistrust those promising them future wealth.

Hinrika, Andri’s female officer, took the trafficked girls to her home much to her partner’s surprise as he wandered out of the shower.

The rather assault of a police officer came as a surprise to him but not to the audience.

Perla’s bullying continued and the little red-haired boy Maggi went out into the snow. Andri’s girls went out to look for him. All three in the snow, followed by all the adults in the house. Meanwhile Andri was distracted by photos of the now disappeared corpse which had appeared on Twitter.

Crazy weather hampered finding the children but at least the phones worked.

The end credits seem to suggest the whole of Iceland was involved in the show but the main actors are credited below.

Series cast summary:
Ólafur Darri Ólafsson Ólafur Darri Ólafsson
 Andri (10 episodes, 2015-2016)
Ilmur Kristjánsdóttir Ilmur Kristjánsdóttir
 Hinrika (10 episodes, 2015-2016)
Ingvar Eggert Sigurðsson Ingvar Eggert Sigurðsson
 Ásgeir (10 episodes, 2015-2016)
Lilja Nótt Þórarinsdóttir Lilja Nótt Þórarinsdóttir
 María (10 episodes, 2015-2016)
Hans Tórgarð Hans Tórgarð
 Engineer / … (10 episodes, 2015-2016)
Steinunn Ólína Þorsteinsdóttir Steinunn Ólína Þorsteinsdóttir
 Aldís (7 episodes, 2015-2016)
Jóel Sæmundsson Jóel Sæmundsson
 Þór Snædal / … (5 episodes, 2015-2016)




Arne Dahl – Many Waters 2

A Unit’ discovers a link between the shooting of an illegal African immigrant, bodies found in a marsh in Varmland and an apparent suicide. Kerstin Holm tries to track down missing police officer Dag Lundmark on her own. Suddenly she realises that he has come across a terrible secret and is just waiting for her to find him.

As the invesitgations merged and the bodies racked up,  the link turned out to be pharmaceutical rather than ideological, an unscrupulous researcher prepared to use the negative effects of one drug on alcoholics to his own advantage in order to protect the commercial interests of a new drug which had cost a fortune to get to the stage of trials.

Kerstin’s wedding ring was there to remind her not of her former boyfriend but her past which was rapidly overtaking  the investigation as she went off on her own to try and resolve things without informing the team what she knew. Her path repeatedly crisscrossed with A-Team  and each part of the investigation seemed to be stalling due to the actions of the other.

When Kerstin’s misery became too much to bear our friendly neighbourhood angelic cleaner arrived to gently remove the ring by magic and his words of comfort of course also contained the clue she needed to resolve the case even if it meant putting herself in danger. He appears to each in their time of need resolving problems with a word or an inflated balloon or loosening an impossibly tight ring. Guardian angel?

Sub plots included marrying in haste only to find out that your life plans are quite different to your new partner and the lengths to which someone will go in order to save their own child.

So will Kerstin remain with the team? Is this why Chavez’s wife has joined, as a replacement? Next week will tell.

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