The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series: Great Nordic Noir From Danes

Home » Series Review » The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series: Great Nordic Noir From Danes
The Killing - Forbrydelsen

Created by Søren Sveistrup – The Killing (Forbrydelsen) series is a great Nordic Noir from the Danes. Sofie Gråbøl plays the protagonist in this Danish police procedural show.

One can also find the series with the same name The Killing (2011-14) from the USA, we humbly suggest that one must watch the original TV series Forbrydelsen (2007-12) from Denmark first. Although we have seen both the Danish and the USA versions of The Killing series, we loved its Danish version more. The American cable network AMC in 2011 produced The Killing in a USA remake. That USA show stars Mireille Enos in the lead. And that has a slightly different storyline than that of the original Danish series Forbrydelsen.

Focus:- bonus info. about the Nordic/Scandi/Scandinavian – Noir

Before we delve any further into the details of The Killing (Forbrydelsen) series, allow us to explain the Nordic Noir briefly.

Well according to the Nordics: “The Nordic Noir is most often considered to be a specific genre of TV series. However, it also includes literature, film productions, and video games. Besides, it has even been extended to style, design, and music. Its key elements include a murky atmosphere, dark narratives, and flawed protagonists. Its popularity may lie in the fact that it usually undercuts the dominant narrative of the Nordics as thriving states with happy people and successful economies, but there is a dark underbelly here, too.”

The Nordic Noir genre is also known as Scandinavian Noir or Scandi Noir, as it is set in the Nordic or Scandinavian countries of Europe. This kind of crime fiction genre is usually written from a police point of view. Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, Faroe Islands, Greenland, and Åland Islands are part of the Nordic Region.

Now, that you have got the basic information, let us discuss The Killing (Forbrydelsen) series in detail below.

Synopsis of The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series

Police Detective Sarah Lund (Sofie Gråbøl) takes on and investigates a series of complex and difficult murder cases, each with personal implications and political consequences.

In a way, The Killing (Forbrydelsen) series defined the Nordic Noir.

Spoilers Free Brief Review of The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series

The introduction

We enjoyed every minute of this incredible crime drama – great themes, tight storylines, superb acting, haunting music, et al. We think, this dark and haunting crime drama from Denmark, might leave you shaken to your core. This slow-burning police procedural drama from Denmark is of pretty high quality.

Great tales, music, cinematography, & direction

We loved the layered storyline of this crime drama. It has so many twists and turns that we found it a captivating watch. Besides, the awesome theme music (and background music) of this series still haunts us, whenever we listen to it. They have put together a beautiful piece of music. The cinematography and direction of this Nordic drama only accentuated the tension-filled atmosphere in this crime thriller.

Sofie Gråbøl excelled in the lead role

In the leading role of Detective Sarah Lund, actor Sofie Gråbøl has excelled and carried this show on her shoulder. And on a side note, we loved her collection of beautiful sweaters (winter wear – pullovers) that she has worn in this engrossing crime series. No, we are serious about the high-quality designs of her sweaters. If you don’t believe me then check her pictures on the posters shared below.

We liked the work of its Danish ensemble star cast Especially, Ann Eleonora Jørgensen, Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Olaf Johannessen, Lars Mikkelsen, Søren Malling, etc. across its three seasons. The ensemble cast of wonderful actors has supported the lead Sofie Gråbøl and its complex story in an engrossing manner.

The conclusion

We appreciate the beauty of a very well-written, directed and acted crime Nordic Noir drama. Not surprisingly, this Danish show has crossed borders and garnered critical acclaim in other European countries – particularly in the United Kingdom, Germany and The Netherlands. Since then, this Scandi Noir “Forbrydelsen” has become an international hit. We believe The Killing (Forbrydelsen) is a must-watch Nordic series.

Oh yes. Surely. Positively. Definitely.

Key Details about The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series

GenreCrime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Original languageDanish (Denmark)
Original title‘Forbrydelsen’ (Its Danish title means ‘The Crime’ in English)
CreatorSøren Sveistrup
SeasonsThree (2007, 2009 & 2012)
EpisodesTwenty (20) Episodes in Season (1) One released in 2007,
Ten (10) Episodes in Season (2) Two released in 2009, &
Ten (10) Episodes in Season (3) Three released in 2012.
Three (3) Seasons = Total = Forty (40) Episodes
CastThree Seasons (S1, S2 & S3): Sofie Gråbøl (Sarah Lund), Morten Suurballe (Lennart Brix), etc.

First Season (S1): Lars Mikkelsen (Troels Hartmann), Bjarne Henriksen (Theis Birk Larsen), Ann Eleonora Jørgensen (Pernille Birk Larsen), Marie Askehave (Rie Skovgaard), Søren Malling (Jan Meyer), Michael Moritzen (Morten Weber), Nicolaj Kopernikus (Vagn Skærbæk), etc.

Second Season (S2): Nicolas Bro (Thomas Buch), Charlotte Guldberg (Karina Munk Jørgensen), Preben Kristensen (Carsten Plough), Ken Vedsegaard (Jens Peter Raben), etc.

Two Seasons (S2 & S3): Lotte Andersen (Ruth Hedeby), Laura Drasbæk (Charlotte), Crystal Lopez (Sarah Lund), etc.

Third Season (S3): Nikolaj Lie Kaas (Mathias Borch), Sigurd Holmen le Dous (Asbjørn Juncker), Trine Pallesen (Karen Nebel), etc.
About – The Killing – Forbrydelsen series.

The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series {Season 1/2007}

Rating of the Forbrydelsen (S1/2007) Series

FM’s rating4.25/5
FM rating – The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Show {S1/2007}.

Poster of the Forbrydelsen (S1/2007) Series

The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Show {S1/2007} – poster.

Synopsis of the Forbrydelsen (S1/2007) Series

Detective Sarah Lund (Sofie Gråbøl) puts her retirement plans on hold when a young girl is found brutally murdered in a car linked to prominent politician Troels Hartmann (Lars Mikkelsen). As she tracks the intricate web of suspects, Sarah becomes increasingly consumed by the case. This highly acclaimed Danish crime thriller spans the course of a 20-day police investigation into the murder of a young girl.

Trailer of the Forbrydelsen (S1/2007) Series

Trailer – The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Show {S1/2007} | YouTube.

Spoilers Alert – Episodes Summary of the first season of Forbrydelsen

A peek into the Twenty (20) Episodes of the First Season
Afsnit means Section

First Episode (S1, E1) Afsnit 1

The brutal murder of a young girl launches an extensive police investigation that threatens to derail a political career and a police woman’s planned retirement.

Second Episode (S1, E2) Afsnit 2

The body of the missing student is found in an abandoned car. Suspicion falls on local politician Troels Hartmann when it is found that the car is registered to his campaign office.

Third Episode (S1, E3) Afsnit 3

Sarah delays her departure for Sweden, and she and Meyer pursue the hire car driver. After receiving vital information, they return to the school where they make a grisly discovery.

Fourth Episode (S1, E4) Afsnit 4

Sarah and Meyer continue the investigation and concentrate on Oliver and Jeppe, while Hartmann wins a political battle but may have lost a friend.

Fifth Episode (S1, E5) Afsnit 5

Sarah and Jan realise that Nanna’s girlfriend Lisa is more involved than she lets on, and the investigation focuses on the school and one of the teachers. Meanwhile, Hartmann fires Morten.

Sixth Episode (S1, E6) Afsnit 6

When the high school teacher, Rama, is identified as a suspect in the killing of Nanna, Troels Hartmann panics. Rama is one of his immigrant role models and part of his election campaign.

Seventh Episode (S1, E7) Afsnit 7

Sarah cancels her trip to Sweden and Meyer is not happy to have her back. Meanwhile, the police hone in on the teacher, Kemal, as their main suspect and Troels is in danger of being demoted.

Eight Episode (S1, E8) Afsnit 8

School teacher Rama Kemal is still the main suspect in the young girl’s murder, and Sarah and Jan pursue him relentlessly. But is he really the young girl’s killer?

Ninth Episode (S1, E9) Afsnit 9

Theis lands in prison after kidnapping Kemal and beating him up. Hartmann avoids a vote of note confidence and then takes revenge on the plotters.

Tenth Episode (S1, E10) Afsnit 10

Meyer and Sarah suspect a cover-up when they’re told to stay away from Troels Hartmann, but Sarah pursues the case and finds a Liberal party reception room that looks like a crime scene.

Eleventh Episode (S1, E11) Afsnit 11

Sarah and Jan know who they are looking for but are puzzled by their superiors’ reactions.

Twelfth Episode (S1, E12) Afsnit 12

Sarah and Jan interrogate Troels, whose private information opens a new can of worms.

Thirteenth Episode (S1, E13) Afsnit 13

The spotlight of the police and media is now trained on Troels Hartmann, and he feels his political career is crumbling. Meanwhile, strange things are going on at the town hall with fatal consequences.

Fourteenth Episode (S1, E14) Afsnit 14

Troels’s political opponent Bremer wastes no time in taking advantage of his discomfort.

Fifteenth Episode (S1, E15) Afsnit 15

Sarah has walked into a life-threatening situation.

Sixteenth Episode (S1, E16) Afsnit 16

Sarah won’t get on board when her superiors insist that Nanna’s murder has been solved.

Seventeenth Episode (S1, E17) Afsnit 17

Sarah and Jan are convinced there’s a link between Nanna’s murder and an unsolved case.

Eighteenth Episode (S1, E18) Afsnit 18

Sarah and Jan check out a warehouse to look for evidence but something unexpected happens.

Nineteenth Episode (S1, E19) Afsnit 19

The hunt for a missing suspect takes an unexpected turn.

Twenty Episode (S1, E20) Afsnit 20

Having been taken off the case, will Sarah succeed in nailing Nanna’s murderer?

The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series {Season 2/2009}

Rating of the Forbrydelsen (S2/2009) Series

FM’s rating4.10/5
FM rating – The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Show {S2/2009}.

Poster of the Forbrydelsen (S2/2009) Series

The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Show {S2/2009} – poster.

Synopsis of the Forbrydelsen (S2/2009) Series

Two years after the Nanna Birk Larsen case, Sarah Lund (Sofie Gråbøl) is a shell of her former self. But when the body of a woman is found with ties to the military and the political sphere, Detective Inspector Sarah returns to hunt a violent, calculated killer. Season two of the series has ten episodes where part of the police investigation supposedly takes place in Afghanistan.

Trailer of the Forbrydelsen (S2/2009) Series

Trailer – The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Show {S2/2009} | YouTube.

Spoilers Alert – Episodes Summary of the second season of Forbrydelsen

A peek into the Ten (10) Episodes of the Second Season
Afsnit means Section

First Episode (S2, E1) Afsnit 1

The body of a female is found in a Copenhagen park. Shortly after, an ex-soldier who served in Afghanistan is killed. Are the murders linked? Only one person can help: DI Sarah Lund.

Second Episode (S2, E2) Afsnit 2

Sarah Lund finds a connection between the murdered woman and Raben’s soldier friend, Allan Myg Poulsen. Meanwhile, Raben runs amok when he learns that his application for release has been rejected.

Third Episode (S2, E3) Afsnit 3

Ex-soldier Raben is on the run and he looks up a former army chaplain who gets him in contact with yet another ex-soldier, Kruger. They meet, but Kruger wants nothing to do with the past.

Fourth Episode (S2, E4) Afsnit 4

Gruner is found dead, bound to his wheelchair. Now there are only two members of the squad left, Raben and Lisbeth Thomsen, whose whereabouts are unknown.

Fifth Episode (S2, E5) Afsnit 5

Sarah Lund and Strange travel to Sweden to question and protect the only other surviving member of Raben’s former army squad. But Raben himself is on the same mission.

Sixth Episode (S2, E6) Afsnit 6

Against Strange’s advice, Sarah arranges to exhume Per Moller. She’s convinced there’s nobody in the coffin because he’s been sighted three months after his death. But the coffin isn’t empty.

Seventh Episode (S2, E7) Afsnit 7

Sarah has found the chaplain, who’s wounded and she pursues the perpetrator. But she’s attacked by him and barely survives. Meanwhile, Raben is still on the run, but Special Branch is watching him.

Eight Episode (S2, E8) Afsnit 8

Raben is in intensive care after having been shot by Strange. He still insists that Strange is the murdering officer, Perk. Under interrogation, Strange admits to having been in Afghanistan.

Ninth Episode (S2, E9) Afsnit 9

Sarah Lund and Ulrick Strange are in Afghanistan on a mission to track down the killer. Pressing on with the investigation back home, Brix decides to conduct a search at the army barracks.

Tenth Episode (S2, E10) Afsnit 10

Sarah Lund and Ulrick Strange return from Afghanistan with new, conclusive evidence, while Brix and his team are looking at what appears to be an important finding in the investigation.

The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series {Season 3/2012}

Rating of the Forbrydelsen (S3/2012) Series

FM rating4.19/5
FM rating – The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Show {S3/2012}.

Poster of the Forbrydelsen (S3/2012) Series

The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Show {S3/2012} – poster.

Synopsis of the Forbrydelsen (S3/2012) Series

After 25 years in the police force, Sarah Lund (Sofie Gråbøl) is finally at peace. But when a young girl is kidnapped, she finds herself caught between a wealthy shipping family and the prime minister as the case leads to a dark secret that implicates every party. This original Scandi Noir offers an insight into the political and business worlds of Denmark.

Trailer of the Forbrydelsen (S3/2012) Series

Trailer – The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Show {S3/2012} | YouTube.

Spoilers Alert – Episodes Summary of the third season of Forbrydelsen

A peek into the Ten (10) Episodes of the Third Season
Afsnit means Section

First Episode (S3, E1) Afsnit 1

Body parts are found at Copenhagen dock only hours before a visit by the prime minister.

Second Episode (S3, E2) Afsnit 2

The police try to track down the kidnapper of Robert Zeuthen’s daughter Emilie.

Third Episode (S3, E3) Afsnit 3

It becomes clear that Emilie Zeuthen’s kidnapper will stop at nothing to recover his debt.

Fourth Episode (S3, E4) Afsnit 4

Another failed attempt to capture their man leaves Borch and Lund with a dilemma – should they obey the perpetrator’s instructions or take action in spite of his directives, thereby risking Emilie’s life?

Fifth Episode (S3, E5) Afsnit 5

The kidnapper continues to insist that he’s seeking to recover a debt. If Lund is to save Emilie’s life, it will be up to her to find out what the debt is and how it should be repaid.

Sixth Episode (S3, E6) Afsnit 6

In Jutland, Borch and Lund make an eerie discovery and find themselves in danger.

Seventh Episode (S3, E7) Afsnit 7

A new element turns out to play a role of great significance in the investigation.

Eighth Episode (S3, E8) Afsnit 8

A suspect is taken in for examination as the police try to find out about the notebook.

Ninth Episode (S3, E9) Afsnit 9

Sarah Lund is held back in her attempts to make headway with the investigation.

Tenth Episode (S3, E10) Afsnit 10

It’s election day and the Prime Minister has everything to gain but Emilie’s fate remains uncertain.

Awards won by the The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series

Names of the AwardsNames of the Awards Winners
Monte-Carlo TV Festival 2010Winner Golden Nymph – Best European Producer
BAFTA Awards 2011Søren Sveistrup, Piv Bernth, Birger Larsen, Sofie Gråbøl – Winner – BAFTA TV Award – Best International – (The first season won in the “Best International” category.)
Crime Thriller Awards, UK 2011Winner – Dagger – Best International TV Drama
Sofie Gråbøl – Winner – Dagger – Best Leading Actress
Ann Eleonora Jørgensen – Winner – Dagger – Best Supporting Actress
Monte-Carlo TV Festival 2013Sofie Gråbøl – Winner Golden Nymph – Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series
Crime Thriller Awards, UK 2013Winner – Dagger – Best International TV Drama – For Series Three
Danish Film Awards (Robert) 2013Nikolaj Lie Kaas – Winner – Best Actor in a TV Series (Årets mandlige hovedrolle – tv-serie)
Sofie Gråbøl – Winner – Best Actress in a TV Series (Årets kvindelige hovedrolle – tv-serie)
Olaf Johannessen – Winner – Best Supporting Actor in a TV Series (Årets mandlige birolle – tv-serie)
Winner – Audience Award – TV Series
Winner – Best Danish Television Series (Årets danske tv-serie)
Awards – The Killing (Forbrydelsen) Series

Check out a few more Nordic Noir:-

Featured & Other Images: The Killing (Forbrydelsen) | IMDb.

Discover more from Focus Magazine

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading

Scroll to Top