Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Borgen

ancient door handle at Blanchland
I'm awaiting the next installment of Borgen, the newest Danish tv serial to reach UK shores. There's something fascinating about the way Danish tv has suddenly woken slumbering audiences with the quality of their crime thrillers. First The Killing 1 - twenty hour long episodes chronicling the police investigation of a young girl's murder, with all the dead ends, sudden deductions and loose ends showing the confusion that faces police forces with every such case. It also shows the nightmare for the victim's slowly disintegrating family - the endless questions, and the revelations that prove she had a secret life her parents knew nothing about.

The chilly character of police investigator Sarah Lund isn't one you wouldexpect to prove a hit with audiences, for she never explains herself or her actions, is abrupt with colleagues and witnesses alike. Her personal life is put on hold again and again, because she is gripped by the need to find the murderer and will go to any lengths to track him down. Yet  her big-eyed, calculating stare holds a fascination. We wonder what she thinks, what makes her do what she does? What does she see that we've missed? What thought processes does she follow?

The sub-titles from Danish are a boon to me. Often in modern tv I mishear or don't understand the rapid, garbled speech, particularly in American tv shows, where sentences are truncated and idioms abound. Now I can follow the plot perfectly - well, as far as understanding the dialogue goes.
Killing II was equally as good as Killing I, and I've noticed that the male leads from each series have turned up in Borgen. It's interesting to observe them in different roles, but I do keep wondering when Sarah is going to turn up in her favourite sweater.

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