If the rise of Nordic Noir has managed to achieve anything, it is to provide viewers with a whole new world of refreshing shows that we weren’t yet aware of. One of these shows is Beck, and with Beck the Series: Volume 2 we are not let down when it comes to quality.
Based on the Swedish novels by the stories are presented in four 90 minutes episodes which involve the beating to death of a reporter, death of a policeman, a mysterious body burnt in a caravan, and an unexplained shooting of two traffic officers. As always with this type of show, we also get a glimpse into the lives of the police investigating.
While the show focuses on Beck (Peter Haber) as the main character, fans of Game of Thrones will also notice the inclusion of Kristofer Hivju who became somewhat of a cult favourite in the popular show. In Beck though he plays a charismatic new member of the team who must find his place.
As with Game of Thrones, Hivju’s character – Steinar Hovland - is instantly likeable. While his co-workers may not be as welcoming he soon wins them around. The fact he is brought in to topple Beck as part of the team is interesting, but more pleasing is the fact he soon makes it clear that this is something that won’t be happening. His forthright nature soon makes him a favourite in the show.
Beck himself comes across as a man who is ready to retire, and Pater Haber emphasises this fact well. Becoming weary of the way many of his cases are going, it seems inevitable that he’ll retire to escape the darkness he sees. With the quality of the show though, I’m sure many of the fans of the show would rather the character choose not to give up and continue the fight.
Even though the episodes are 90 minutes long, they are well written and paced in a way that they don’t feel overlong. The structure of each episode has the same feel, we see the initial crime and watch Beck’s team put the pieces together before the final revelation of the missing piece of the case. While there are twists in some of the stories, it never feels like they are forced into the episodes. If anything, it leaves the viewer feeling like they have confirmed something they already thought, making it an entertaining revelation rather than something we could never have guessed.
Beck The Series: Volume 2 may be deep into the show as a whole, but it is easy to dive into at this point and fully enjoy the four episodes that are included. The inclusion of Kristofer Hivju adds an added incentive to watch, and for those wanting to see him in something a little different than Game of Thrones, this is perfect viewing. A tasty slice of Nordic Noir, you’ll find little to fault if you choose to invest your time in Beck.
Beck the Series: Volume 2 is available on DVD in the UK now.