Hidden Gem

I am, as Regular Readers are aware, a huge fan of gloomy Scandi detective shows.  My latest binge was The Killing (on Prime), which I devoured, all twenty hours of it, over a couple days last week.

*Disclaimer:  I know that Denmark isn’t regarded as a Scandi country.  As far as I’m concerned, any country on the western shores of the Baltic which has damp, freezing, miserable weather, gets dark at about 4pm, and features actors speaking a language which sounds like a chicken with its throat half-cut, is a Scandi country.  Also, if the heroine detective — they’re all heroine detectives;  all the men are idiots, clowns or bad guys — is halfway between plain and ugly, and the plot is dense and contains about five different story lines, then it’s a Scandi detective movie.

As was The Killing, in absolutely every respect.

However, in this show I saw something out of the ordinary:  a woman with quite a large part, who was not halfway between plain and ugly.  Let me introduce you all to Marie Askehave:

In the TV show, she has coal-black hair which shows off those startling blue eyes to perfection:

Also, she’s one of those women who doesn’t do well in still photos — in a movie medium, though, she’s captivating.

The show’s good, too.

Lest anyone thinks I’m going overboard about plain-to-ugly Scandi female detectives, here’s The Killing‘s lead, Sofie Gråbøl:

…and that’s a studio pic — she looks far worse in the show.


  1. Denmark is absolutely considered a Scandi country.

    Scandinavia’s official definition is Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. Adding in Finland and Iceland makes it “The Nordic Countries.” Norway, Sweden, and Finland actually comprise “Fennoscandia” though that grouping seems to be what most people think is Scandinavia anymore, despite Finland not actually being a part of it. Technically 😉


    1. As an aside, the Swede named Mercedes Mason is usually cast as a Latina in ‘Murrican shows due to her raven-black tresses and olive complexion. She might be a bit young and skinny for your taste, but for me she’s definitely got the va va voom factor going.

  2. You might consider reading books on gloomy Nordic murders by Jo Nesbo. Some great stuff there. One of his books, Headhunters, was made into a movie that’s great stuff.

  3. I was unaware of the Danish production. I quite liked the American version. I’ll check out the original, thanks for the heads up.

  4. Well, if you want to get your gloomy Norwegian Weird on, you might want to give Beforeigners a go: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beforeigners . Krista Kosonen doesn’t hurt too much to look at, and the whole premise of cavemen, Vikings and 19th century folks all running around modern Oslo is delightfully chaotic.

  5. You might like the tv series Artic Circle.

    Search domain imdb.com/title/tt6800294/https://www.imdb.com › title › tt6800294
    Arctic Circle (TV Series 2018- ) – IMDb
    Arctic Circle (aka Ivalo) is set in the unforgiving polar region, amidst the icy landscapes of Finnish Lapland. In season 1 Nina Kautsalo, a Finnish police officer, finds a dying prostitute in an old cabin in the wilderness, the ensuing criminal investigation takes a surprise twist when a deadly virus is discovered in her blood.

    One thing to be aware of the scenery is very very bleak and the Finns love their cellphones…

    Iina Kuustonen is very easy to look at…

  6. Try the original Wallander if you can find it, its in Swedish and starred Krister Henriksson, better than the later version with Kenneth Brannagh. Also enjoyed Trapped, set in Iceland (I know). The Stieg Larrson series, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, the original in Swedish, is very good, better than the American version. Daniel Craig as the main male character just did not fit, kinda like Tom Cruise as Reacher, but I digress. Lots of good Scandi authors, Henning Mankall, Jo Nesbo, Hakan Nesser, to name a few. The original Rebecka Martinsson was good but then they replaced the lead actress and ruined it. Anyway continue to enjoy.

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