Monday, 3 May 2010

Wallander - The Priest: review

I’ve watched another episode in the second series of the Swedish TV version of Wallander. This was The Priest, and it was based on a book by Henning Mankell which I have not read.

The opening, as so often in Wallander, is dramatic and arresting. A couple are having a secret assignation in a hostel. The man is promising to tell his wife about the affair and to make a new life with his lover. When the couple part, someone outside the building shoots the man, and although the victim does not die immediately, his life-support is eventually turned off.

It emerges that the victim is a priest, and the prime suspects are the spouses of the two lovers. The priest was also involved with a rather controversial organisation that ships medical supplies and drugs to Africa. While Wallander (Krister Henriksson) and his team investigate, the detective’s attempts to develop a relationship with a female prosecutor are stymied by her interest in a younger man.

The notion of jealousy as a possible motive for murder is a compelling one, and here it is given added resonance by the sub-plot. I must admit that I found the eventual solution (and the means by which it was revealed) less interesting than what had gone before, but this was another watchable programme, if not by any means the best in the series.


Anonymous said...

Martin - Thanks, as always, for this review. I do wish we got Wallander here. Well, at least I have your excellent reviews to read...

Nan said...

You are so lucky to be able to see this series and the Branagh Wallander. We get the latter, which I do love. Maybe the other will make its way across the water someday.

Maxine Clarke said...

I saw this one recently. It was better than some of the earlier episodes in the series. This one and last week's seemed as if someone had written a script, given the characters some life, etc. The previous episodes were plodding and pedestrian.
I can't really get over how many compromises have been made for the TV formula, not least in resucistating a character who had previously been written out (Martinnson), completely changing the character of the sidekick in series 1 (forget name) and then having him change his own character again in order to write him out, not even mentioning why Linda, Anne-Britt and the female boss haven't appeared in series 2, those awful plastic interns (identikit male and female) etc.
Yet, I still seem to be watching it! On the evenings when I am too tired to read and there is no football on (as my husband rather likes it).

I've read quite a bit about this new series Luther recently, and have recorded it. I haven't decided whether to watch it yet, so if you review it I shall be guided by that!

Anonymous said...

Have even got the teenage daughter watching Wallander now. She had overlooked the fact that she'd find it easier to follow than the Danish series we like (which only comes with subtitles in Swedish). But I do wish that Ystad wasn't populated by people with a Stockholm accent. Have you any idea how annoying it gets? Sort of Rebus with nothing but Londoners, and occasionally a token Scot.