The Killing / Forbrydelsen 3 and the Return of Denmark’s Sweater Girl

April 2, 2013 | By

For Season 3, Sarah Lund is feeling more white-on-blue than green-on-white.

As promised, I’ve uploaded a review of The Killing / Forbrydelsen: Season 3 [M], the supposedly final season in what may be Denmark’s best-known TV export.

Its release in Britain on DVD and Blu-ray (via Arrow) represents the severe lag North Americans must endure with popular European series, if not the conundrum American cable station AMC is facing as it ventures ahead with its own third season of the U.S. remake.

At this stage, however, the U.S. production has started to drift from the original seasons, setting Season 3 in a prison – a locale with characters wholly absent from the Danish counterpart.

Series creator Søren Sveistrup admittedly revisited the main elements that made Season 1 [M] so successful: make politics, a long-buried cold case, and a new dilemma converge after a series of outrageous cliffhangers using the same level of misdirection that made Season 1 so addictive and infuriating (in a good way).

Det. Sarah Lund is back, and while it’s possible she can return for a fourth season, the finale makes it very tough to replant her in her old life and career. Nevertheless, as fans eventually see the final season, there will be much discussion on the whys, the how-could-you, the why not, and the come-on-it’s-not-fair.

If Lund’s saga ends here, it’s okay, but she’s too smart and resilient to avoid a whole new adventure. Sveistrup’s talent will arguably be put to the test in not only figuring out a new storyline, but making it as taut, engaging, and dramatically satisfying as Season 3.

Part of the series’ success in Denmark and in the U.S. comes from Frans Bak’s score, which is as potent, affecting, and haunting as Angelo Badalamenti’s music for the series that arguably inspired Sveistrup – Twin Peaks – and like Badalamenti’s scores, there only exists a single CD devoted to the series’ music.

In the case of Twin Peaks, the first season was followed by a dreadful second and an incoherent feature film, after which it died and fans felt cheated. The time for a follow-CD was over in a flash. Bak’s situation is a bit more unique than Badalamenti’s because although there were less original cues in Season 2 [M], Bak had perhaps more time to craft music for a tighter, smaller, and more potent set of episodes in Season 3.

Music from  Season 1 first appeared in Europe via Mercury Records, and in March of 2013 the album was released in North America by Universal, and I’ve uploaded a review [M] covering the key themes and album presentation.

Hopefully Bak is considering a follow-up CD, but the success of the first 3 seasons plus the American production are enough to keep any composer busy, and he was also the composer behind Denmark’s CSI riff  Those Who Kill / Dem som draeber.

Coming next: Pony Soldier (Twilight Time), and new soundtrack reviews.


Mark R. Hasan, Editor ( Main Site / Mobile Site )

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