Tag Archives: The Bridge

If I Could Turn Back Time

If I Could Turn Back Time

If you could return to the past to relive a part of your life, either to experience the wonderful bits again, or to do something over, which part of you life would you return to? Why?

No doubt there’s a lot of mistakes I’d like to correct and certainly there’s a few moments I wouldn’t mind revisiting. But I wouldn’t do either of those things given the opportunity. Not even to return to before last summer to enjoy Freiburg being a top flight team again. Though it’s tempting to revisit that wonderful day when they beat Bayern. But still the answer is no because as wonderful as that day was there was something missing. Nils Petersen despite being the hero of that day was not a fully fledged Freiburger, he still at the time belonged to Bremen. Whereas now he’s a Freiburg man.

All the mistakes I made I wouldn’t go back and correct them, I’d like to believe that each of them means something. That there’s something for me to learn from each one. For things like this I like using a Samuel Becket quote I got from the pilot of Criminal Minds, “Try again, fail again, fail better.”

Some of them are so stupid and I’ve made them so often it’s not easy to believe there is a reason for them, but I’m trying to believe that anyway.

Seeing this prompt the first thing to come into my mind was the last episode of The Bridge. Emil wanted to correct what he saw as wrongs committed against him. The main wrong he wanted to correct was his own existence. As he put it he didn’t want to die, rather he wanted never to have existed to begin with. Whilst I think his actions are wrong, that is killing and torturing several people in order to avenge what happened to him as a child I think I get what he means. Because of the way he was conceived he thinks he was a mistake and that he should never have existed. I feel the same way sometimes though for somewhat different reasons.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this kind of stuff ever since I read a post on a blog about whether or not you would make your child normal if you could. One of their points was that there is nothing good about autism, no upsides to all the difficulties and problems. I used to get offended by posts like that, they made me angry. They made me wonder if people in real life felt that way about me.

This time it didn’t make me so angry nor was I offended. In fact I can kind of see their point. It’s partly because of events in real life in which I’m once again being overtaken by someone younger than me in the independence stakes. And yes I know it’s not a race and everyone develops at their own pace and all the rest of it. But it’s not about that, it’s not about how fast things happen. It’s about realising that maybe you just aren’t going to be able to reach the same place they are. It makes me feel even worse when people, some of them so called professionals make comments to the effect that I’m lucky to be so high functioning. It sure doesn’t feel lucky.

The other reason I feel differently about it is because of the story I’m writing. It’s making me think about things I never considered before and see certain things from a different perspective. It’s odd that I even created a character like Matze, after all I’ve never been particularly fond of children. The direction his character has taken is bringing out all sorts of feelings I didn’t even know I had. He’s just a character but that doesn’t make me any less overprotective of him. Seeing all of this from a parent’s perspective means I have a different view of it. I want him not to be scared, to understand what’s going on around him, to be able to express himself. For his life not to be anymore difficult than it has to be. In the chapter I’m working on at the moment his parents are realising that they can’t protect him from everything. That as much as possible they have to teach him to stand on his own two feet. The problem with that is when you realise there’s only so much you can do. That they’re not going to be able to do everything they need to be able to. Then you have to consider the possibilities for them when you aren’t there to look out for them anymore.

I know it’s a pointless question because there is no magic cure. It’s not the only reason it’s pointless, the other reason is because I couldn’t even imagine being normal. I have no idea what it means. In some ways it’s easier to dream of never existing at all than what it’d be like to be normal.

It’s a topic of conversation which can get very heated very fast when discussed with other autistic people. Understandably it’s something a lot of people have very strong feelings about. I used to reside firmly in the “I don’t want to be normal” camp. Now I’m no longer so sure. It’s not that I want to be normal, it’s not that simple. It’s just I’m starting to question whether there are any good things. And if there is any good things, any upsides to all the problems, are they enough. Even if there are any upsides, if there’s anything you’re talented at or an expert in, sometimes it still doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter how smart you are or how much of an expert you are at something when you can’t speak up for yourself, talk to strangers or just deal with the outside world in general. If you’re scared of practically everything and you’re always terrified of making a mistake in social situations. When you can’t even enjoy being with your friends because you can’t stop worrying about getting something wrong. If you’re confused by the outside world so much that instead of trying to deal with it anymore you decide a full scale retreat is in order and you decide instead you’re better living off in your own little world with your characters.

The Bridge III: Episodes 9 & 10

I’ve been putting off writing this post but I can’t put it off any longer. I suspect the experience of writing it will be as unsatisfactory as the end itself but it has to be done. I think it’s partly less fun because of course this time there’s nothing to solve, it’s just a case of summarizing the main events. The killer is revealed, we get some answers in relation to Saga and Henrik. Not to mention a hint at the possibility of a fourth series and yet it all feels so unsatisfying. Not so much the case, that for me makes sense. Well as much sense as an emotionally disturbed madman can make anyway. It’s the resolution of Saga’s story which I am most unhappy with, but I’ll get to that later.

First the events of episode nine. Jeanette having been kidnapped by the killer gives birth and the baby is taken by the killer. She’s quickly found by Freddie who has a tracker implanted in her phone. Getting the baby back however is not so easy. Meanwhile Saga having been suspended from the case is replaced by Rasmus who wastes no time in rubbing Henrik up the wrong way and later jeopardizing the case.

At this point in time the police were focusing their attention on Annika and considering the possibility that Claes is involved. Not only that but the theory that they may be working together. A theory which could have been correct, it would have explained a lot of things. Like why Claes had a connection to only one of the victims and an alibi for several of the murders. The gun they find in his flat supports their theory. At this point it wasn’t clear if Annika was still alive or not and we were given good reason to suspect she wasn’t when Claes is seen in the middle of nowhere. As it turns out he was burying his fathers ashes which is a strange thing to do in the middle of all this but then he is rather strange.

Looking more closely into Annika’s background they find out that her father renounced his parental rights when she was five because he discovered she wasn’t his biological daughter. To make it worse when her mother died they’d already been divorced for a few years and he refused to take Annika in when she asked. His reason was that he saw no reason to take care of a child which wasn’t his. Apparently it didn’t matter to him that she would end up in foster care or that up until she was five he treated her and loved her like she was his own. The look Henrik gives him says it all. It must have been extra painful for Henrik. For him to be missing his daughters and be willing to do anything to get them back, and sat in front of him is a man who was lucky enough to have not one family but two. A man who was so lucky he had the opportunity to turn a child away. It’s one of the themes of this series, parents abandoning their children in one way or another. Of course it’s a theme which cropped up in series 1 and 2 as well. Point is Annika certainly has plenty of reasons to hold a grudge against him and against the world in general.

When Claes is caught in Malmö however he denies working with Annika of course but he does admit he’s afraid of her. Though obviously he can’t tell them the real reason. He insists that he doesn’t know where she is, saying that she went to Gothenburg and he hasn’t seen here since.

In between all of this there’s an amusing moment when Saga apologises to John about what happened to his daughter. Her apology was typical Saga, blunt and to the point. It’s the book she gave him which is the source of amusement, a book about the subject of dealing with trauma. When John points out that it may be a little heavy for her Saga points out he could always read it to her. At least she had the right idea, she knew she should do something and she made the effort, surely that counts for something?

Freddie gets lured to a meeting with the kidnapper. His wife lucky for him is a little more sensible than he is and calls the police. The kidnapper scarpers but not after tricking Freddie by setting a trap involving a pram. Later on he meets the kidnapper a second time and had Rasmus not screwed up they might have ended the whole thing there and then. But no, he had to charge in and ended up getting himself shot, though he was wearing a vest. A fact which doesn’t stop him complaining about how much it hurt.

Before that Saga and Henrik show Freddie and all his staff pictures of all the victims, a process which reveals a surprising twist. One of his security guys recognises Morten saying he was there a few months back and that he seemed to be high, he was babbling about wanting to see his real father and that the two of them were meant to be there. Put this together with him saying his brother shot him and one thing is obvious, if Annika’s involved, she’s not the only one. As it turns out part of my theory proved to be correct, Helle Anker’s former profession was important. She only conceived Morten after she started her clinic, Morten is not her husband’s son.

The mystery of just where Annika has been all this time is solved when Saga and Henrik find her at the crime scene, the place where Jeanette was held. The clue that leads them there is tire tracks and a new padlock on one of the buildings. The room is almost a replica of the basement from the foster parent’s house. What’s interesting about this is that when they ask Emil and another foster kid they both say no-one lived there and that they weren’t allowed in there. A fact which later is proved to be untrue because Emil admits he was made to live down there after he ran away, after Hans brought him back. I wonder why they still lie about it, could their foster father and their fear of that room still have some kind of a hold over them? Or is it some kind of self preservation, if they don’t admit to knowing about it then it doesn’t exist?

The end of episode nine ends with the information we’d all been waiting for, the revelation of what the code meant and just who Morten’s father is. The code however doesn’t seem to be for his file but for another one. The donor was one Freddie Holst and the mother Anna-Maria Larsson. At the same time we find out Emil is Freddie’s son he himself finds out the news, coming face to face with Emil who has a gun to the baby’s head.

Not that there was any doubt at this point but Emil’s identity as the killer is confirmed when Annika admits she met with him for coffee and that’s the last thing she remembered before waking up in that room. The interaction between her and Saga is interesting, she asks if anyone reported her missing, like Claes for example. Saga in her usual blunt fashion replies honestly that he seemed glad to be rid of her and that no-one reported her missing. No doubt some people will feel that was rather cruel and that Saga should not have answered so truthfully. I disagree, I think her answer was fine. Annika doesn’t need to be shielded from the truth. Facing the reality of the situation can’t be a bad thing for her, she needed to be put straight, for her delusional thinking to be challenged.

At the place where Jeanette was found the police discovered the model house which had one of a as yet uncompleted scene. A murder which Emil is in the process of acting out with Freddie. It’s ironic that when he tells Freddie about the painting in the basement that he can’t see the parallels between Freddie and himself. Art is important to both of them and for similar reasons. Because both of them did not have much growing up and both of them used art to deal with it. I guess the difference is that Freddie had his parents whereas Emil had no-one. Love and attention really does make the difference. One can’t help but wonder if that’s the only factor, if it’s really that simple. Is there something innate in Emil that made him commit murder and not the other foster kids?

An interesting point to note is the visit to Linn by Saga’s friend the coroner, he tells her that he needs to talk to her immediately but it’s not about the case. At first I thought he was there to talk about Saga, to somehow stand up for her. But later events show that he’s there for a very different reason.

Back to the case, Saga and Henrik visit the man who painted the picture which was in Emil’s room. The picture entitled “A Very Nice Day.” I wonder if the title was meant to be ironic. At any rate the location of the painting turns out to be on the island where he lives, meaning they are in exactly the right place. After trying and failing to escape Freddie is lead back to the warehouse at gunpoint. Turns out Emil is not content with just getting revenge on Freddie, he seems intent on killing his son too. He makes Freddie put the noose around his neck and then puts the baby in his arms. When Freddie says the baby won’t survive the fall Emil replies “No. Not everybody survives the fall.”

I’m not sure if Emil means to kill the baby or not. Maybe he’s testing some kind of warped theory, that if Freddie loves his son enough he’ll be able to hold on to him and protect him. Or going by what he says earlier maybe he wants him to drop him, maybe in his eyes dropping him and letting him die is protecting him. He wishes he never existed, maybe he thinks he’s somehow saving this kid from suffering. There is a more obvious explanation, if he can’t be Freddie’s son, if he can’t have a family and be loved then this kid can’t either. Whatever the truth is I don’t buy a word of what Emil claims, that he’s not interested in revenge, that he’s just righting wrongs. Truth Terrorist, aka Jens in series 1 said similar things. He tried to make out it wasn’t all about him but it was, it usually is. Given how Emil claims to be righting wrongs however it was completely logical for him to hang himself next to Freddie, because he thinks he never should have existed.

His wish is not granted because Henrik and Saga get there though Saga hesitates when it comes to saving Emil, at first she freezes and doesn’t take hold of him to prop him up. She’s put in a similar position to the one Martin was in. Though it’s not exactly the same and I think if she had let Emil die people would look on it differently than what Martin did. Because if she had let Emil die it would have been in the heat of the moment whereas what Martin did was planned and calculated. Though personally I would judge Saga more because in letting Emil die she would have not only been compromising the standards of her profession and maybe the law but her own personal standards. She did in the end grab hold of him and Emil along with Freddie lives. Though I have to say I’m not sure Freddie has learnt much from the whole experience. When he visits Jeanette at the hospital he tells her he’s giving her some extra money because of what happened. As if money can change what happened or really be of any help at all. I think when someone has that much money they forget that it cant’ fix everything. He probably thought that as a child. That if only he had money he could fix everything, and it doesn’t seem to be a way of thinking he’s grown out of. One thing which deserves a mention, was the baby’s name a deliberate reference to The Killing? I wonder, little baby Jan.

Emil tells them everything, he admits to having shot Morten, Aleks and Marc. Morten’s mother gave him the code, she wanted him to know where he came from. Part of her reason for doing so was the guilt she felt at what happened to Morten in Afghanistan apparently. So Helle Anker unwittingly set the whole chain of events in motion. In more way then one. Because without knowing it she created the whole situation when she opened her clinic and played a part not only in Morten’s creation but in Emil’s. How ironic that she played a part in the creation of her downfall. She can’t be blamed for Emil, not really though he doesn’t see it that way. But with Morten she most definitely can, lying about something as important as where your children come from cannot be excused. After having kept it secret for so long and bearing in mind Morten’s fragile mental state you have to question her decision to tell him. I think she did it more for her own sake than for his, there was nothing for him to gain from it. He was already messed up, she just made him even more so.

My theory was at least partly right anyway, I had the right idea but the wrong suspect. I had Rikard in mind when I came up with that idea. As for how much sense it makes, Emil righting the wrongs he thinks have been done. Of course it’s not going to make much sense, why would it? He’s an emotionally disturbed madman, one who knows the difference between right and wrong but no less a madman for it. You could drive a truck through the flaws in his thinking. Take for example the fact he places no blame on his mother in all of this. When she’s the one who created him, the one who actively created him. Freddie and Helle Anker played their part but that’s all it was. It’s his mother who chose to have him that way, who chose to lie to him about who his father was. And yet he places no blame on her, he claims she loved him but we only have his word for that. Also note the fact he said she loved him, not that she took good care of him but that she loved him. Loving him and taking good care of him are not the same thing at all. I can’t remember who asked it, I think it may have been Henrik. Whoever it was asked if his mother hadn’t died then by his logic he wouldn’t have done all this. But that’s not necessarily true. His mother is only free of blame because she died, it tends to happen that way. When a parent leaves or dies a kid tends to either hate them and blame them for everything or the opposite happens, in their eyes they can do no wrong.  I think Emil is angry at his mother, he just can’t bring himself to admit it.

But he can allow himself to blame Freddie and Helle Anker. He needs to take his anger out on someone. His mother is dead, so he needed someone to focus his anger on. I don’t believe a word of what he said, about handing out justice instead of punishing anyone. It was all about punishment whatever he says. He wants other people to feel the pain he felt. I don’t buy what he said either that all of this could have been avoided by him being born. If that’s the wrong to be righted then why not do just that? Why hurt all the other people? And why kill people when he didn’t need to? Like Marc and Aleks, he could have just shot them. But he chose to kill them. He made choices. He’s a hypocrite, he talks about the people in his life not having taken responsibility. Well neither is he. Expecting any of it to make sense is madness. People rarely do make sense, especially when they let anger and hate guide them. And especially when part of the person doing all of this is really a scared and lost little boy. Emil may not want to admit it but he is. Or at least he was anyway. He finally succeeded in his aim, committing suicide in his cell using a paperclip he took from his statement that Saga took to him in order for him to sign. Question is, did she do that deliberately? Did she look away knowing what he was going to do?

Their short conversation was most intriguing. He asks why she saved him to which she answers “because I’m police.” When she asks him if he wanted to die he says no, I never wanted to have been born. He says it’s not the same thing and that she doesn’t understand the difference because she had a friend who needed her. It really gets to her and potentially leads to her not noticing him taking the paperclip.  I wonder if what Emil said had any effect on how she acts later on, in realising that now Hans is not there no-one needs her and she has no-one.

A most important fact regarding Henrik’s family comes to light, the body of his wife was found during roadworks in Sweden. This must have been the body Saga saw when she was at the coroner’s office. But they only found his wife, not the girls. Is it possible that Henrik killed them and doesn’t remember?

Henrik gets back to work on the case, well not really work, he doesn’t really know what he was doing. In the end he overdoses on the stimulants he’s been taking and Saga finds him. He hadn’t told her about the discovery of his wife’s body. She finds out from Lillian at Hans’ funeral. Interestingly enough Saga asked Henrik if he would go with her, but she went even though he didn’t show up.  When Saga visits Henrik at the hospital she finds out about the drugs he’s been taking and the fact he’s been taking them the entire time they were working together. He seems to assume she’s going to report him in. If she really didn’t it’s most interesting. I’m not sure if it’s a good thing or not. In one way you could argue it signals some sort of growth, that she is realising that rules don’t have to be so rigidly applied and that they aren’t in the real world. On the other hand it’s like she’s compromising who she is and what she believes in. I’m not sure. Their conversation is enlightening anyway:

“Do you remember us talking about why I never let people get close to me? Do you remember why?”

“Because in one way or another everyone has either left you or hurt you.”

Saga doesn’t answer, just walks out. She gives no indication as to what if anything she’s going to do about Henrik. I wonder if she’s counting Hans in that, if she’s angry at him for leaving her. And if she’s angry at Martin too.

Linn no longer seems to dislike Saga so much but it makes no difference, her little agenda has it’s desired effect. The file on her mother has gone to the prosecutor’s office and they want to investigate. Whilst they do so Saga is to be suspended from active duty. So at the same time she’s dealing with the loss of her only real friend she now loses the center of her universe as well.  Henrik for his part seems intent on resigning from his job in order to search for his daughters.

The end is troubling to me, not that Saga and Henrik are teaming up to find his daughters. I get that part, he needs help and she needs something to focus on. It’s what came before it, her visiting the spot her sister committed suicide at. It seemed like she was about to do the same, or at least that’s what Henrik thought. He talked her down from whatever that was, telling her that he needed her which seemed to be exactly what she needed to hear. It also bothers me that she let him hug her, though I like the fact she didn’t hug him back. That would have been too much out of character. I don’t know why it bothers me so much, it’s part of the reason I put off writing this post. I thought more time might help me make sense of it but not so.

Call it character progression or whatever you want but Saga no longer feels like Saga to me, and not in a good way. There’s something different in this series that I can’t quite put my finger on. From what Sofia Helin said in an interview about how much it takes out of her to play Saga, I think she may be done with the character. It wouldn’t be a bad thing were it to end here. I for one feel like I’m done with the show. It’s interesting what stands up to a rewatch, what shows endure in your affections and which ones don’t. I’ve been rewatching series 1 of The Killing and all over again I’m rediscovering the little details that made it so great the first time around. It helps that it’s been at least a year and a half since I saw it last. I’d forgotten how funny Meyer was and how good he and Lund were together. It’s strange, The Killing killed off one of my favourite characters and yet I’m realising that I like it more than The Bridge. Before I would have said The Bridge over The Killing, that I liked Saga more than Lund and Meyer more than Martin. Now I’m coming to realise I like The Killing more all round, including Lund.

365 Days of Blogging/A New Challenge

Last January I set myself the target of posting for every day of the Rückrunde, the second half of the Bundesliga season. Once I did so I thought I may as well try and go for the whole year which I did. I’m not going to make such grand plans right now. I’m not going to aim for the whole year again, I don’t want to think that far ahead. Right now it doesn’t seem like such a good idea to think that big. Plus I don’t want to curse anything. not Freiburg’s promotion chances and not Germany at the Euros in the summer. I will however make the same commitment as last January, a post for every day of the Rückrunde.

With there being no football on and not much on TV either I have plenty of free time, in theory anyway. Despite having so much free time I’m trying to take it easy. Which means attempting to be realistic about what I’m going to get done each day. Easier said than done, I always want to do everything and I never know where to start. So I’m only allowing myself to think about the next two things on the list as I work my way through it. Otherwise I’ll just end up beating myself up for not getting enough done.

This week is the first full week of the year. It didn’t get off to a great start which is entirely my own fault. I didn’t mean to stay up so late and it doesn’t matter that I think I had a good reason for doing so. The consequences are the same regardless of what my reason for doing so was. It’s definitely not a case of starting as you mean to continue. Don’t get enough sleep and pay the price. Which I certainly am, how terrible I feel right now and the argument I got into yesterday can be traced back to this. I knew I should have walked away, I could hear the little voice at the back of my mind telling me to and I still couldn’t do it. I should at least try to see the good side of the situation, at least I know I was in the wrong and understand why. It’s not one more thing for me to endlessly obsess over and try to make sense of, which is good because there is more than enough of those.

One of which is the end of the third series of The Bridge. I haven’t written my post covering the last two episodes yet because only today did I get round to watching again the last two episodes. I kept coming up with excuses and putting it off. Well today I ran out of excuses. I’m not happy with how it ended, not so much the case though that has it’s problems, it’s the resolution of Saga’s story which I’m having trouble making sense of. Problem is I’m having trouble putting it into words just why I don’t like it.

My immediate reaction is that I’m unhappy with her allowing Henrik to hug her. But beyond that I’m unsure why I’m not happy with it. The hugging thing is a bugbear of mine. It’s something I’ve seen before and I don’t like it. The way it’s used it completely misunderstands autism and the reason for why the people in question dislike hugs. Two other places it was used which bugged me was in episodes of Criminal Minds and Cold Case. In Criminal Minds the boy comforted his mother after his father was killed and his mother herself had been held hostage by the killer. My problem with it is that he’s never done it before, why would he do it then? It’s even more annoying because Joe Mantegna who plays Rossi has an autistic daughter. But not nearly as annoying as the episode of Cold Case which featured an autistic boy who witnessed his parents getting murdered. That episode has to be one of the worst representations of autism on TV ever. But I’m not going to list all the reasons it sucked here, I’ve done that before. What’s relevant here is towards the end of the episode he allowed Scotty to put a hand on his shoulder. It’s just not believable that a boy who didn’t even let his own family touch him would let some detective he just met a few days ago do so.

It’s such a neurotypical perspective of autism, making it all about feelings when it has nothing to do with it. Making it about their feelings when it has nothing to do with that either. A film I watched yesterday did this. It’s a film called After Thomas and it’s about an autistic boy whose life changes dramatically when he gets a dog. His parents through the dog have a way to connect with him, a way to reach him. Which is all well and good. He makes a lot of progress and they are able to teach him things they couldn’t before. What bothers me is how his mother is obsessed with hearing Kyle tell her that he loves her. Also what his father says, when they’re having an argument he tells her that Kyle has no concept of feelings, that he doesn’t know what love is and that he’s never going to love her. There’s a few things that make me angry about this, firstly how can he presume to know what’s going on in his son’s head. Secondly why do parents act like it’s their god given right for their children to express love for them in the way they expect, or at all. There are no guarantees, you don’t get to choose when it comes to having kids. There’s no guarantee you’ll have a kid who loves you or who chooses to express that love whether they are NT or not. I didn’t mean to rant about it but ended up doing so anyway. I guess that film really got to me, especially the part where his father says Kyle loves Thomas but not them, that all he cares about is his trains. Doesn’t he have that right? To feel about people however he wants to feel? The film ends with him telling his mother he loves her. As if that fixes everything. He’s still autistic, being able to tell someone he loves them doesn’t guarantee anything, like him being able to take of himself. I guess it’s just a topic that really gets to me at the moment, other people and their expectations.

Vampire Jürgen and other Random Musings

Usually when I dream about a team near to a game they lose, I can think of only two exceptions to this pattern, happily on both those occasions it was Freiburg I dreamed about. I know there’s probably nothing to such things but I like making a note of them regardless, I like patterns like that. Last night it was Jürgen Klopp I dreamed about. Today Liverpool lost 2-0 to West Ham United. The pattern holds. What I don’t like is first dream of the year that I remember and it’s Klopp in it. Not Jogi, Hansi, Christian Streich or even Thomas Tuchel, but Klopp. It was I have to admit a most amusing dream. It took place at a school for vampires and Klopp himself was one, as was I. Also there was someone named Daniel. There’s three possible choices for who that could be. The real life one can be ruled out, it was definitely not him. That leaves Daniel Brühl and Daniel Siebert, the referee. I’m certain it wasn’t the former, but not entirely certain it was the latter either. It’s most disappointing that’s all I can remember, I would have loved to know what the story was. As for what the message was I don’t know. But there is one I’m choosing to take from it. If I got to bed at a decent hour and got enough sleep then maybe I would be sufficiently rested upon waking to remember more of my dreams. I don’t need to be told twice. Maintain a vampire schedule and you don’t get good dreams or to remember them. All you get is Klopp, albeit a vampire version. But go to bed at a decent hour and be rewarded with your favourite Germans, at least I hope so. In fact with how tired I feel today I could most likely happily fall asleep right now. The only reason I’m not is that there’s a repeat of an old game on later this evening that I want to see. After that I’m going straight to bed.

It’s the first of three football free weekends and it’s a very strange and disorientating experience. Combined with being tired and it only being the second day of the new year it all makes for a very confusing day. When I was watching part of Liverpool’s game earlier I got to thinking how slowly time was moving and how I never feel like that whilst watching Freiburg or Germany play. Then it’s like it’s over before I even know what’s happened, it feels like it’s just started and then all of a sudden it’s over. I feel that way about time in general, you spend a lot of time wondering where it went. Right now with there being no football on and having no fixed schedule for the weekend I feel the opposite way. Like there’s all this time to fill and I have no idea how to fill it. There’s plenty of things I could be doing. I just don’t want to do any of those things. I should be catching up on my Bundesliga posts, I need to do that before the season resumes. I can put that off for the weekend at least and get back to work on those on Monday. I also keep putting off rewatching the final two episodes of The Bridge and writing the final post about them. I’ve had enough time to do so, but I keep putting it off. It’s almost like if I don’t watch the final two episodes again then I won’t have to let go of Henrik and Saga. And I won’t have to admit that Hans is gone. I still can’t believe that. That they killed Hans off. For me that reason alone makes me wish there’s not going to be another series. Her having a new partner in the form of Henrik is one thing, but the thought of replacing Hans in anyway is unbearable.

Along with counting down the days until the season resumes I’ve been trying to work out what film to watch next. I keep thinking about Inglourious Basterds. Partly because that film is never far from my thoughts and partly because I read an article in which Tarantino said that the opening scene of that is his most favourite scene that he’s ever written. I would say it’s mine too but the truth is any line or scene he’s written that has Christoph Waltz in it is my favourite. Tarantino’s right about that, Christoph really does make his words sing. I’m not sure I could pick a favourite but if I really had to I would say the “That’s a bingo” line is the best of them all. There’s just something priceless about that scene.

The only thing holding me back from watching it is that the last time I watched it was the last but one week of the previous season. It was the night before Freiburg beat Bayern, or to be more precise since it finished so late, it was the very same day. It’s almost like a curse of some kind, I know Freiburg did beat Bayern but it didn’t matter in the end. On the other hand it seems like that’s exactly why I should watch it now, when the season is on break so I can watch it and not feel like I’m cursing anyone. Plus it would be a good time to watch it and Django Unchained, as kind of a preparation for The Hateful Eight on Friday.

I may be feeling a little lost today but at least I’m not worrying quite as much as I was yesterday. I think getting some sleep helped on that count, as did the Matze adventure I’m working on. I didn’t get enough sleep but enough to be of some help. The problem is still there and I’m still avoiding dealing with it but that’s ok for the moment. It will still be there on Monday. Right now my mind is focused on other things, I know all I’m doing is running away from it but that’s not always such a bad thing. I don’t think I come up with a solution just yet so surely it’s a good thing I’m not obsessing over it. Nor am I sure that I should allow myself to make up my mind right now, not when I’m feeling so confused. Allowing myself to be focusing on Matze and making character related decisions is not the worst thing to happen. Though it’s probably a little misleading to say I’m letting it happen, that implies I have any control in that matter. When truth is that couldn’t be further from the truth. Normally when I wake up I write whatever I can in my dream journal and I may make a few story notes if I have any random ideas. This morning I wrote a full three pages of the the beginnings of a new story for Matze. That was before doing anything else, it was after waking up and writing about the vampire dream, the third thing I did this morning. Writing the start of that story was apparently important enough to put off getting breakfast. Given how hungry I always am in the morning that means he’s pretty important then.

There are two other things which brightened up my day today besides Matze. Whilst I don’t yet know what Freiburg and Dortmund have planned for the winter break I do know that Bayern are playing Karlsuher SC in a friendly two weeks from today. So I will at least have one Saturday accounted for in the next three weeks. The other thing is something I got in the post, a very special signed picture of Hansi. I always like it when he smiles but I especially like it in this picture. I have by now quite a few pictures of him from when he was younger and active as a player, in many of them it doesn’t look like him. In this picture not only is his smile as wonderful as it always is but it looks like him too:

Hansi Flick – 1.FC Köln signed photo

The Bridge III – Episodes 7 & 8

A few weeks ago I was sure that I was glad should this turn out to be the final series of The Bridge. Now I’m not so sure. On one hand I like Henrik and he’s turning out to be quite a match for Saga. But on the other hand liking him and acknowledging that does not change how much I miss Martin. And if there were to be another series then Hans would not be in it either. For me that would be a step too far, accepting Martin’s absence is one thing but I’m not sure I could tolerate both him and Hans not being there.

It’s a good thing I think if you feel like this, if on one hand you don’t want to leave the characters but at the same time you can see the story is complete and that you wouldn’t change any of it. I feel much the same way about The Killing, that I’d love to see another series yet at the same time I’m glad there’s no more. Hans Rosenthal said that the body count of series 2 was absurd and that they corrected that in the third series. They have done so but I think they’ve made a similar mistake, instead of too many victims they have too many sub-plots. It’s not so much that it’s hard to keep up with them, it’s just annoying knowing that half the stuff you’ve been working on paying attention to ends up being completely unrelated. Not only that but time you waste on pointless subplots is time wasted away from developing the main plot.

So it seems they finally have a real suspect but I’m not convinced. Their suspect is Annika Melander. She was a foster child along with Emil, they were both fostered by the couple found dead at the beginning of episode seven. The scene was again staged, a Christmas tree put up with Hakan’s eyes used as one of the decorations and the man was wearing a Santa hat which hid the fact his brain was taken. The woman had an apple stuffed in her mouth, like a pig. That message is obvious, the man not so much. As Henrik put it, is he a mastermind or an idiot. Is it because of something he knew or didn’t know. Or is it because something he thought, evil thoughts which led to evil actions. The message behind both the brain and the eyes becomes clearer later on when it’s revealed that Hakan was the social worker who placed Emil there. It’s obvious, the eyes were placed there because Hakan should have seen what was going on. Curious, I can’t remember if they said Hakan was both their social worker or just Emil. If it’s the former then it would mean it’s him with the connection and not Annika.

Plus it’s him who worked at T&L Andersen, it’s him who has a connection with Freddie Holst and is interested in art. But Annika may be working with him, the workshop at her house suggests that, unless Emil is framing her of course. It’s possible that Annika has been murdered by Claes. He’s seen going back into his flat holding a shovel. He was with her earlier and was meant to pick her up from Malmö Central Station. If Annika were the killer and she was working alone it, and she is indeed dead then it makes no sense. If that’s so then who kidnapped Jeanette. I think it’s likely that Annika and Emil are working together, or that she at least knows what she’s up to. Annika is pretty focused on Claes, I’m not sure she’d care about getting involved in anything else. Yes she’s unbalanced but she’s also focused.

Getting back to Emil, he’s also the one who went to the police to tell them about the murder scenes resembling works of art. Now if he was the killer this may seem odd but actually it can be explained. It might have been part of his plan, or he wanted to know how much the police knew or more simply he was annoyed they hadn’t figured it out yet. He might have wanted to see first hand the results of his work, to enjoy taunting the police that way, going on a power trip like that is not unheard of in serial killers. It’s not uncommon for criminals to insert themselves into a investigation for various reasons.

Another thing to consider is that there was a bed and a painting in the basement, like someone had been living down there. The painting made me think of Emil and the fact that his own flat is bare and hardly looks lived in. Is that because he’s got another place where he spends all of his time or because it’s how he used to living having grown up as a foster child?

The two victims both have burn marks in their mouth but they are different to the others. The coroner thinks it looks like an A and a percent sign. Saga tells him it’s not, that it’s most likely a L and  a G but she doesn’t know what alphabet. Before they talk about the case he’s examining a body which has been burned beyond all recognition. He says she was of average height, with no visible fractures and that she was buried in clay. I’m thinking they wouldn’t be showing us this unless it was relevant, surely it can’t be her mother’s body? Or could be Annika’s body, we did see Claes with a shovel and this body was buried. Of course it could be red herring to make us think that. Seeing the body you would of course connect it with Claes and the shovel and jump to the conclusion it’s Annika’s body, unless that’s just what they wanted us to think.

Getting back to Emil once more, he has a connection with some of the victims but not all of them. Hakan was his social worker, Hans was the police officer who took him back when he ran away when he was eight and Abrahammson was a teacher at his secondary school.  He’s  also connected to Holst through his job at the gallery and he’s been to his house to pick up paintings.

Serious doubt is seemingly cast on to him being the killer by the events of episode eight, he’s seen stumbling into the road, half naked and covered in blood. But then this doesn’t rule him out as being the killer or at least being involved. It could be part of their plan or they could have had a disagreement. Question is why did the killer let him escape, a question which he’s able to answer himself. It’s one of the paintings on the list, it’s called “The One who got away.”

Except he claims he didn’t escape, that he was let go. He says that he thinks he was drugged and when he woke up he was in the field. Lets say Annika is the killer and she’s working alone, if Claes killed her then this would leave her work unfinished and would give Emil the chance to escape. Two major flaws to this theory, Emil says he didn’t escape and secondly if Annika was working alone then who shot Marc and kidnapped Jeanette at the end of the episode?

Alternate theory, Annika and Emil are working together. They both have the skill set required for this particular set of endeavors. With his interest and knowledge of art he stages the scenes and comes up with the ideas and Annika with her knowledge of the human body deals with this side of things. Maybe the reason there’s not a connection between Emil and all the victims is because he didn’t choose them all. They both would have reason to want their foster parents and Hakan dead. Equally they may both have reason to want revenge of some kind on the teacher. But where do Helle Anker and Morten fit into it?

Another theory is that maybe there’s not just two of them, perhaps another former foster child is part of this too. Like Gustav whom Saga and Henrik talked to. What he told them about Annika contradicted what Emil told them. Emil said that she was at the bottom of the pecking order and she had it worse than everyone else. Whereas Gustav said this was not true, he said that Filip their foster father treated them all equally. But then they aren’t really talking about the same thing, are they? Because Gustav is talking about how their foster parents treated them but I think Emil was talking about how the kids treated each other. He said she was at the bottom of the pecking order and that you took your anger out on those beneath you, add that with him saying he’s not proud of it, I think it’s not too far fetched to take it as him meaning he mistreated Annika himself. He also said Annika didn’t approve of him coming back, now he could mean because she would have taken his place in the pecking order were he to stay away or he could mean she was relieved her tormentor was gone.

It’s also possible that Emil is working alone, that staged the scene himself. One thing that wouldn’t fit is what they found at Annika’s house, they found photos of the murder scenes, the foster father’s brain and several lights like the ones used to stage some of the murder scenes. But what they don’t find is the models, we see this same model at the end of the episode with whoever it is that kidnapped Jeanette. This could be interpreted in a few different ways. Firstly the things have been planted there by Emil to cast suspicion away from himself, he didn’t leave the models because he wouldn’t be able to part with those and it would be too much evidence to leave behind. Or he’s been using that space with or without Annika’s knowledge, such a fact being true would explain why his own place looks so bare. Again I’m not sure she’s a part of this, she seems very focused on Claes and not at all interested in anything else.

I’m not sure I believe anything Emil says, there’s something off about him. Plus his information about what he heard whilst tied up is very specific. I’m not saying he couldn’t have heard all that, it’s certainly possible. It just feels like it’s too good to be true. He heard an ice-cream van, sirens and he was sure it was more than one and children singing and playing. It was this information which John used to locate Annika’s house. It just seems too perfect, too easy. Like Emil wanted to lead them there. Another fact in favour of him being the killer, the number six was found in his mouth, meaning he’s the last victim. It would make sense, killing all the people who didn’t do what they were supposed to do, he might feel that he didn’t either, that he didn’t stand up for himself. Plus every other victim had a body part missing, he has none. But what does the code mean?

As for whether she’s dead or not when they question Claes about Annika and her whereabouts he tells them very little. Obviously he can’t explain to them why he’s going along with her, he can’t do so without incriminating himself in the death of his father. He claims he was meant to pick her up at the station but that she didn’t show up. Now if he did kill her it would be better to say that then admit he did pick her up, because then he’d be admitting he was the last person to see her.

Then there’s the question of where the Holsts come into this, with the events of these two episodes it’s safe to say Freddie has nothing to do with what’s going on. The killer driving Kjell Söder’s car was following Asa and planned to kidnap her. We know this because of the bottle of chloroform on the seat. But they changed their plans upon getting the e-mail from Tina whom they’d hired to watch the Holst’s house. They changed their plans because they learnt she’s not really pregnant, obviously the baby is important to them in some way.

In a strange quirk of fate Marc who needs money to buy back the cottage (not knowing that Freddie has bought it) breaks into the yellow car and steals the iPad. This leads to the death of the person he sold it to. The police are tracking the iPad at the same time as the killer but they don’t get there in time. They do manage to follow the signal and find the car but it’s empty. The suspect escapes on a train, I wonder if that’s meant to make us think of Annika. If that’s why we saw her tell Claes to pick her up from Malmö Central Station, so we would make that connection. They manage to retrieve the iPad but it’s useless to them.

As for the Holsts and their  plan of keeping the surrogacy secret all of that goes to hell when Asa stupidly tells Claes, he then gives or sells the information to the tabloids. It’s so obvious he would have gotten his revenge in some way, I don’t know why she would think she could trust him. It’s obvious that it’s not the business he cares so much about losing but her and especially to Freddie. He can’t have her but he can humiliate them.

One thing the press don’t know is the identity of the surrogate. There’s one person who does know, who has pictures at least anyway. Tina does but for once she does the right thing and she gives them to John. There she tells them about the job and they see the e-mail address, which is the same code on Morten’s fridge. He knows that code so he must know something about this, that would be too big of a coincidence, for them to both to know the same code but for different reasons, wouldn’t it?

The code’s complete now which means there should be no more victims. So if the code is complete why did they take Jeanette? I got to thinking about the code, if the order of the victims is important, if each character was assigned to each victim for a particular reason or if it’s just random.

Towards the end of episode eight Saga and Henrik pay a visit to Annika’s ex husband. He runs from them but he doesn’t have anything to do with this, turns out he has a weapons cache and has some dealings with biker gangs. He’s irrelevant, almost anyway, he would be totally unimportant were it not for the fact Saga either failed to search him or didn’t so thoroughly enough. Either way it doesn’t matter, he had a gun and tried to escape, in the process shooting John’s daughter. This annoyed me, I don’t see what purpose it served in regards to the story. I guess it’s just meant to show that Saga is upset and does respond to things emotionally even if other people think she doesn’t. Part of her realising that even she can make mistakes and that her feelings can affect her actions and behaviour.

Saga and Henrik’s relationship is as interesting as the case. The scene in e7 when he’s making breakfast was nice, it was a little strange, a normal domestic scene with Saga. But it was ruined somewhat when he freaked out upon realising his family aren’t there anymore. I like the way Saga handled it when he mentioned it to her. The matter of fact way she speaks and sees things I think is helpful to Henrik. Her way of handling it is brilliant, most people would probably be freaked out and maybe even a little scared by the conversation but she’s not even fazed. She just asks “Should you have seen them?” And when Henrik admits he doesn’t know her simple answer is “You probably decided not to.”

He’s not himself however, partly because he decides not take whatever drug it is he has in his car. This combined with his confused feelings leads Saga to think he’s off with her. Before I thought that maybe Henrik wanted Saga to find out what happened to his family because he may have hurt them and he badly wants someone to find out so that he doesn’t have to live with it anymore. Now I’m thinking the opposite, which admittedly could still be true if he did harm them. I’m thinking that he doesn’t want to know what happened to them because if he finds out then he’d have to face up to it, to admit they’re gone and to let go of them.

Meanwhile Saga has to contend with being questioned by internal affairs. A lot of the questions they ask are barely relevant, in the end she has no choice but to tell the truth about what happened with her parents. She admits that she made false allegations of sexual abuse against them in order to get her sister out of there. Naturally they don’t believe her explanations when they find a nail of her’s in her mother’s car, nor when they discover the e-mail was sent from her computer. Of course they wouldn’t, on the face of it you have to admit it sounds crazy. Unless you know what the person in question is capable of and the the lengths they would go to. Rasmus is annoyingly still around, internal affairs talked to him too and he continued spinning his web of lies. I was also annoyed to find out that not only is he the last two episodes but it seems he actually plays a part in the investigation.

Internal affairs is not the only thing Saga has to contend with, there’s also the issues of Hans’ death. I liked Henrik’s reaction to it, he really is starting to get Saga:

Henrik: You know it’s not lack of interest that I’m talking about the case and not Hans? That’s how you want it, right?”
Saga: Yes.

In all of this they still find time for a funny moment, or at least I though it was funny anyway. At the murder scene Henrik quips in English upon seeing the tree “Merry Christmas.” It wasn’t just his deadpan delivery which made it amusing. There’s also the fact that Thure Lindhart who plays Henrik has been in two Christmas films. A very funny film entitled The Christmas Party which has quite a few familiar faces in it, not least Søren Malling, aka Det. Jan Meyer from TK1. Also the actress who played the murder victim Nana Birk Larsen also from TK1, plus the actor who played Robert Zeuthen in TK3.

The other Christmas film he was in is the aptly titled “One Hell of a Christmas.” Aptly titled bearing in mind his quip and the scene in question, not only that but it’s a truly terrible film. When I watch a film I always try to find at least on redeeming feature in it, this was one of those films where the only redeeming feature is that it ends.

The Bridge III – Episodes 5 & 6

On one hand I’m more confused but on the other hand I’m not because I knew something without even realising I did. At first episodes 5 and 6 were no more helpful than the previous two in clearing things up, at least not anything related to the case. But that’s not true, going back over my notes for the first two episodes I found a very important note related to Henrik and the art gallery. The gist of it was that I was wondering whether or not art could be related to the murders somehow, because of what Emil said about the painting. It was there Henrik first met Emil and he told Henrik about a painting by an artist named MM Brandt who’s work mostly dealt with themes of universal truth. I left this out of my notes when I typed them up, rejecting it as somehow too pretentious perhaps, or too far fetched. Turns out it’s not so far fetched. Because Emil has figured out that a few of the murder scenes resemble works of art and he went to the police with this information. All the pieces in question have one thing in common, they all belong to Freddie Holst.

I also wonder if it’s relevant what Emil said about Brandt, that he’s “not only a sculptor but also a furniture designer, an architect, a set designer.”

It kind of fits the description of the killer in a way, assuming that one person is doing all this. They are somewhat multi-faceted. I was going to say talented then I realised that’s not such an appropriate word to use in this context. The point still stands though, that there are many aspects to their crimes.

Whilst the case is no less confusing a few other things were cleared up. Like what’s going on with Marc and his girlfriend. No wonder he doesn’t care about her being pregnant, she’s a surrogate for Freddie Holst and his wife.

With Claes however it just gets murkier and murkier, he is finding it difficult to disentangle himself from his stalker. Killing his father solved one problem for him but it’s created an even bigger one. He is a very slippery character indeed.

As for the case I had wondered whether or not Anna may be the next victim, turns out I wasn’t far off. It’s her husband Hakan who the killer targeted next, putting him in a barrel and I’m not sure what happened to him exactly. They didn’t show it. Henrik says it’s a game played in Denmark on Shrove Tuesday called “cat in a barrel.” A cat is placed in a barrel and kids hit it till it breaks. The killer removed the eyes. No doubt because his “crime” is to not see what he knows is there, to ignore his wife cheating on him, to knowingly live a lie and to present that lie to the public. Not only that but they use their family in the deceit, they use their daughter to promote their company as a family friendly brand whilst being the biggest hypocrites imaginable.

On a related note the police also think Holst may be a target. I think so too because he is also engaged in a falsehood of a kind, keeping up the lie that his wife is pregnant and hiding the fact they are using a surrogate. He may be a target of the killer but he’s not really a victim, in fact he may be an active perpetrator. He did after all set up the kidnapping of the woman who’s giving birth to his child. He said it was to keep her safe and that she can’t be around Marc because he’s stressing her out, yet is he not stressing her out and putting her in danger with the way he’s acting?

Well Hakan wasn’t technically the next victim, Lukas was shot before him but it’s not certain who shot him. If it’s the killer or if that’s something else, for one thing it could be Freddie Holst’s doing. It certainly doesn’t fit the pattern of the other crimes. Or it could be the killer taking him out because he knows something, just like Morten did.

One thing we know is where Lukas knows Henrik from, he sold drugs to him, nothing more sinister than that. Henrik has a reason to get rid of Lukas but he wouldn’t hire someone to kill him, would he? Surely that’s too far-fetched.

The third victim Lars-Ove Abrahamsson turns out to have plenty to hide, not only was he in possession of illegal images of children but his sister confirmed that there were allegations against him but none of them ever stuck or resulted in charges. It was a most interesting scene because his sister is deaf and communicates using sign language. It turns out that Saga can sign a little. I think this scene shows the best of Saga and of the ways in which her matter of fact manner can be refreshing. It was most pleasing to see her take control of a situation and handle it appropriately whilst Henrik, the so called normal one stands by awkward and helpless.

On a related note she handled the conversation about Henrik’s family rather well. Henrik doesn’t need pity or people patronizing him, he knows exactly what he’s doing. I liked the way she asked her questions and the fact that she agreed to stay even though they wouldn’t be having sex.

They also had a good scene earlier in the sixth episode when Henrik tries to find out more about here. I like the conversation so much I feel the need to reproduce it here:

Henrik: What were your reading?
Saga: When?
Henrik: Yesterday, when I arrived. You said you were reading something.
Saga: Why do you want to know?
Henrik: You and I are sleeping together but I know nothing about you.
Saga: That’s because I prefer it that way.
Henrik: Why?
Saga: Everyone I’ve ever got close to has left me and/or hurt me.
Henrik: Ok.
Saga: Psychology: The Science of Mind & Behaviour by Nigel Holt.

I like that Henrik doesn’t say anything, he just nods in acknowledgement. They really are coming to some sort of understanding. I wonder what it is that made her decide to answer. If it’s because she realised that Henrik must know how she feels, he knows what it feels like for someone close to him to leave. The way she answers his question is perfect, the fact that she gives no indication she’s about to do so. It sounded a bit like me if I’m honest, I do that to people a lot, answer without them expecting it. Of course I also have a tendency to answer questions that have been asked a long time ago without providing any context, but then that’s a different quirk altogether.

At the hospital Lillian inadvertently discovered a clue, a burn mark in Hans’ mouth. Checking the other victims they found out that they had one too. Saga works out that it’s the Babylonian Number System. It’s Henrik who provides the final clue, he recognises it as being the code that was on Morten Anker’s fridge. The code also appears in the e-mail used by whoever it is that’s contacting the photographer. One thing related to that, the word “russmail” is also in their e-mail address. Russia has been mentioned, Benjamin mentioned it to Anna in relation to workers not being able to unionize.

The coroner missed the burn marks which results in Saga questioning him and his competence. This is becoming a theme, people not being what she thought they were, people acting in a way other than what she expected, confronting the idea that people are not infallible. First with Martin, then with Hans and now with her friend the coroner. I wonder if all of this is building up to something bigger in this regard.

The fifth episode ends with Anna calling Benjamin to tell him that she loves him and wants to be with him. But it’s too late, after having talked to her husband on the phone he seems to see the truth of the situation, that they can never be together and he’s decided he can’t live without her. Assuming that he really did commit suicide that is.

Pursuing the art angle they interview and investigate Freddie Holst, in the process discovering a connection between him and Andersen. Holst invested money in his company, essentially stopping them from going bankrupt. Holst buys struggling companies and “rescues them.” That is he sells of parts of the business that still make money and makes a number of employees redundant. Hardly Mr Popular then and someone who a lot of people would have motive and reason to hurt. Whilst at Andersen’s office Henrik finds a catalog which has all the items from the first murder scene in it. The order slip was missing, tracking the order Henrik discovers it was delivered to the office. This clue leads them to a potentially disgruntled employee, one who was let go because of Holst. One Kjell Söder. But he doesn’t have a connection to the other victims, except one. He drives a yellow car and a car of that colour was seen at the cottage where Hakan was. I hope he’s not the killer, it’ll be a similar kind of mistake as series one. Back then Sebastian was introduced at such a point and in such a way that it was obvious he was the killer. It made it impossible to solve the case and it took all the fun out of it.

In a previous episode Saga was sure someone had been in her flat, obviously she would have suspected her mother. Only thing is nothing was taken, but her laptop had been moved. That proves to be significant here. Saga gets an e-mail from an unknown person related to the case. They claim to have information and Saga stupidly decides to deal with it herself, no doubt because of the pressure put on her by the boss. I read a good theory online that her mother had broken into her flat, used the laptop to send the e-mail to throw suspicion on Saga and more importantly so she won’t have an alibi for the time of her mother’s death. This is all kinds of wrong, Rasmus being allowed anywhere near this is wrong first of all, secondly what the hell is the boss doing getting out the file on Saga’s parents. Part of me wonders whether or not her mother is really dead at all.

Towards the end of the second episode Saga went to visit Hans, she tells him about her sister and about what happened. She wonders if she could have helped her sister had she been able to see she was unhappy. She tells Hans about what Claes and his attempts to define happiness, saying that she didn’t recognise his description of happiness therefore she must never have been happy. I can empathise with her confusion, making sense of other people’s feelings can be difficult but  making sense of your own even more so. Forget about being able to express them, just knowing how you are feeling is hard enough to work out. I used to think that too, that I’d never felt happy because I didn’t recognise other people’s descriptions of it. Turns out it’s something you have to work out for yourself, other people mean well but their words on the matter weren’t helpful. As it turns out what makes me happy is quite different from what makes the people around me happy and I’m not good at showing it, at least not in a way other people recognise. And when I am clearly happy about something they still aren’t satisfied, either because I’m being too strange or because they think what’s made me happy is weird.

Advent Calendar Day 6

Behind door number six in the Freiburg calendar was Lukas Kübler. In the DFB one there was not one card but four. No doubt deliberate to match the fourth card, which was the first of Germany’s stars, the first time they won the World Cup in 1954. The other three are the replacement Schneider, goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller and team captain Bastian Schweinsteiger. Joining them from the Dortmund calendar is the fastest man in the Bundesliga, current top scorer with seventeen goals Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Thomas Schneider - DFB card 2015-16 1 Thomas Schneider - DFB card 2015-16 2 Roman Weidenfeller - DFB card 2015-16 1 Roman Weidenfeller - DFB card 2015-16 2 Bastian Schweinsteiger - DFB card 2015-16 1 Bastian Schweinsteiger - DFB card 2015-16 2 Der erste Stern 1954 - DFB card 2015-16 1 Der erste Stern 1954 - DFB card 2015-16 2Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - Dortmund advent calendarI wanted to wait to write today’s post until after the matches finished, in particular RB Leipzig v Duisburg. The prospect of Duisburg getting anything from this game seemed to be simply impossible. And yet I was really hoping they would. Because one-slip up by Leipzig, even if it’s them drawing  rather losing will be greatly appreciated. With that in mind today was not only almost Christmas come early for Duisburg (had they won it would have been only their third of the season) and for Freiburg. Because at half time Duisburg who are bottom of the table were drawing 1-1 with second placed Leipzig. Not only that but they took the lead in the 79th minute. All of a sudden the impossible was possible. But it was not to be. Leipzig got themselves three goals in the space of five minutes. Final score 4-2.

One final football related thing I have to mention is Thomas Tuchel’s reaction to Dortmund’s winning goal yesterday. So good that I had to make a GIF of it. He he has that in common with Jogi and Christian Streich, he provides plenty of good moments for GIFs and videos, that’s for sure:

Thomas_Tuchel_goal_celebration_Wolfsburg_v_DortmundAfter watching the latest episodes of The Bridge last night I was no longer in such a good mood. They made for thoroughly depressing viewing, the scene where Saga’s mother approaches her in the station I found particularly bothersome. The way she tried to manipulate her and to get a rise out of her made for very painful viewing. It reminded me of a few things that I’d rather forget. As a result my previous happiness over Freiburg’s very satisfactory victory over Union Berlin was nowhere to be found. Apart from not getting enough sleep Friday night, the day was going fine until then. That scene turned an otherwise good day into a “what’s the point” kind of day. I felt much the same way when I got up. Staying in bed and feeling sorry for myself wasn’t really an option, not if I wanted to watch the repeat of Dortmund’s game. I didn’t want to get up but I made myself, figuring that I’d have to make myself get up later anyway so I may as well do so now. And if I got up later I would not only be annoyed with myself for staying in bed but for missing Dortmund’s game too.

Making myself get up was the right decision. I’m still tired and only in a slightly better mood but I’m glad I got up. Everyday I allow myself to stay in bed like that it lessens the chances of getting back into a good routine. This week I made all the same mistakes as last week, it went almost exactly the same way. It was the exact same night I stayed up all night. I made similar mistakes in other ways too, spending too much money for one thing. It’s not like I’m the picture of responsibility normally, this isn’t hugely out of character for me. But it is a little more reckless than I usually am. It’s not the fact I was reckless or what I spent the money on that’s out of character. It’s my reaction to it, I don’t seem to particularly care or be worried by it. That’s what unusual. I know I’m being irresponsible, I know I should try to rein it in a little. But I just don’t seem to care or be at all motivated to make an effort to do so.

I feel like that about most things right now. I don’t really know why, I don’t think there’s anything wrong right now, nothing major anyway. This Christmas is certainly a major improvement on last year. To name the obvious, Freiburg are at the opposite end of the table. Of course it’s not the same table, and whilst I would rather them be in the Bundesliga, even in the bottom third, instead of being top of the 2. Bundesliga it’s still something to be pleased with. Whatever happens their final game before Christmas won’t be as miserable as last year.

Everything else is for the most part ok too, I have lots of projects to work on and plenty to keep busy with. I have a stack of very interesting books to read. Plus I should have the money to buy the new Germany away shirt soon and a few other things beside. Yet still I don’t feel happy. I’m doing everything I normally do. I’m trying to keep busy. I have provisional plans for next Tuesday and if all goes to plan should get to give them their gifts in time for Christmas. I know at least what’s bothering me in regards to this, the unknown, the waiting. Not knowing for sure or not. I find waiting to be difficult at the best of times but now it’s simply unbearable.

There’s another thing from The Bridge I can’t stop thinking about. Something that Claes the writer said about being happy. When people ask how you are most people will say, even if they’re not. He asks what happens if you said you weren’t, and why don’t people say they aren’t fine. I never tell people I’m not fine, I’m not sure if I even can. I put a lot of effort into the opposite, into not giving away that I’m not fine. Sometimes though it’s not enough and people notice anyway. It was stupid of me to think that my odd sleeping patterns from the last two weeks would go unnoticed. It was also stupid of me to think it wouldn’t affect my behaviour in anyway. Truth is I’d given no thought to the matter, if I had I would have noticed how distracted I’ve been and how I’ve been even more strange than usual. Apparently it was like I had a hangover, which is funny considering I drink on average no more than five beers a year.

If I’d gotten some more sleep and was paying more attention I would have also would have noticed earlier how so much of what I’m writing is very depressing. When the person who I gave a few chapters to read asked why I was writing such dark stuff lately I said I didn’t know. Maybe then I really didn’t know or I simply didn’t or couldn’t say the truth. Which is because I feel like it. I suppose that would have counted as telling them how I feel, and that’s just not me. I refuted that Matze is in anyway representative of me and my own feelings. I wasn’t entirely truthful there and deliberately so. I don’t want them knowing that. In a lot of my recent chapters Matze is angry, not about anything in particular, just angry in general. But it’s not how he feels that’s important, it’s the fact that he can allow someone to comfort or to help him when everything gets too much. Because I can’t, writing about it as close as I can get. I wish I could let someone help me, it would certainly make my life easier.

The Bridge III – Episodes 3 & 4

Four episodes in and I’m no less confused. Two suspects down, well not that they were really suspects but I don’t know what else to call them. Anyhow both Aleks and Morten are dead, both shot to death in the same manner, both by an unknown assailant. Except Morten seems to think he knew who was there. That scene was very confusing, the killer had a recording of Morten’s phone call from a few minutes ago, or was it the message he left. I don’t know, either way Morten called him. His dying words were that his brother killed him. But not his literal brother because he doesn’t have one. He does have a half brother Elias but he’s an unlikely suspect, given that he’s only four years old. That was a very amusing conversation between Saga and Henrik. In fact that exchange was so amusing it’s worth putting here in full:

Saga: He doesn’t have a brother.

Henrik: He’s got Elias.

Saga: Elias is four.

Henrik: Yes, yes, I don’t think he did it. But Morten’s got a brother, that’s what I mean.

Saga: Elias is his half brother.

Henrik: Yes I know that Wiki, but…

Saga: Don’t call me that.

Henrik: Sometimes people call their half siblings their siblings. So maybe Morten had more half siblings, that’s what I meant.

Saga: Why didn’t you say so right away?

Henrik: I tried. Then I had to convince you I didn’t think a four year old had shot two men in two different countries in the last 24 hours.

Saga: It sounded like you thought that.

Henrik: No, it didn’t.

Saga: Yes

Henrik is very different to Martin but that’s not a bad thing. If it weren’t for the fact that he clearly has his own issues and may in fact be using Saga I’d say he was perfect for her. So his family is indeed at least missing and that was what he wanted Saga’s help with. If anyone can find out the truth Saga can. Question is does he really want to know the truth, and does it have anything to do with what’s going on? Lukas, the guy from the youth project is convinced he knows Henrik from somewhere, saying that he never forgets a face. But Henrik said he was mistaken. I wonder if Lukas had anything to do with what happened to Henrik’s family. When he’s looking over the case file at home he says “I can’t believe they only questioned him once.”

Questioned who, and what about? Is he referring to a witness or to a person of interest related to the disappearance of his family? Is it possible that Henrik has something to do with all of this? Could he be the brother Morten referred to? This is the best picture I could get, it’s the photos from the file on Henrik’s family. The first guy can’t be Lukas, but the photo underneath could be him. Question is, who’s the first photo of:

Henrik's case file photosI’ve been thinking that the killer may be police or military because of the way both victims were shot. But then a person good be a good shot for other reasons, such as being a criminal. Like the shady people that Lukas is involved with. I have no idea what’s going on there. The kid from the poker game owes him money so to pay it back he has to do him a favour. But it’s his girlfriend who ends up doing it. The task being to pick up a bag from a locker, a bag which gets stolen from her. Except all is not as it seems. It seems to be some kind of set-up, the same black car is following them after they leave. One theory online I read suggested that maybe the girlfriend was a decoy. That she took the decoy bag and the police or the gangsters would have been watching her and not the person who took the real one. The reason I don’t agree is because when she first picks up the bag it’s too heavy for her and she lets it drop to the floor, you can hear the sounds of the weapons in there hit the ground, hence not a decoy.

I don’t know what Lukas’ play is there and to be honest I really don’t care. I find him, his henchmen and Marc and his girlfriend insufferable. The latter especially, I don’t understand why you would stay with someone who not only gambles all your money away but steals your jewellery and anything that isn’t nailed down to feed his addiction, shows no interest in his unborn child and shows no concern for anyone but himself.

To get back to the topic of whether or not the killer is police or military, one of the reasons I had for thinking the former is that I was wondering how did he know where Hans was. How did he know he’d been kidnapped, unless of course he’d been following him, then he would know, it’s possible.

Marc is not the only new face, there’s also the woman from the real estate company Ekhdahl Housing, Anna who’s about to become their new CEO. Not only her but her friend’s son whom she’s sleeping with. He looks a bit like Marc, at first I thought they were the same person and from what I read online it seems I’m not the only one who made that mistake. The other new face is Claes Sandberg who’s introduced at the start of the fourth episode when he kills his dying father. Claes is quite strange and that’s putting it mildly. He’s an author and some kind of speaker. There’s a woman who’s quite obsessed with him and he doesn’t seem to be at all bothered by this fact.

Lukas’ connection to the case is that a van belonging to the youth organization he works for was captured on camera driving across the bridge at the right time. He gets a kid to lie for him, to say he used the van to go and visit his girlfriend. So he may turn out to be connected, or he may have just been running drugs or guns and have nothing to do with it.

Marc Lukas Lukas' henchman Anna Claes Sandberg Anna's boyfriendIt’s curious to think which of these subplots will turn out to actually be relevant to the case. Because series 1 had a couple of such stories which turned out to have no bearing whatsoever on the actual case but which fitted nicely in terms of the themes being explored. In particular I’m thinking about Stefan and his sister in series 1. They were only indirectly involved because of the homeless angle, because his sister drank the poisoned alcohol if I remember correctly. They were relevant in that it was related to the issues of family, of people having to take care of themselves, of not trusting the authorities to do the right thing. Which come to think of it may be relevant here. I can’t believe I only just figured that out. Martin was a little fixated on Stefan, he was convinced he was hiding something or had done something wrong. It was partly to Martin’s persistence they discovered he killed the husband of the woman he was helping to get away. Martin was so sure that handing out your kind of justice wasn’t the right thing to do. But that’s what he ended up doing. Because truth is unless you are in that situation, unless it’s happening to you, you don’t know how you’re going to react.

On a related note I think there may be something there with Henrik. When he was trying to talk Rikard down he asked him if he knew what it was like to lose a child. Not only that but the way he talked about it was most interesting, enough to quote in full:

Henrik: No matter what you’ve done and  to whom it doesn’t come near to killing a child. You’ve already crossed one line. Don’t cross another one. Rikard, it destroys something inside you, if you do this nothing will ever be the same again. Do you understand what I’m saying? If she dies now some of you goes too. Losing a child, life will never be whole again.

Does Henrik know not only what it’s like to lose a child but to kill one too?

Saga’s mother shows up again and is as manipulative as ever. Her father has died and she wants Saga to come to the memorial service which of course Saga refuses to do. Her temporary boss has other ideas however, getting involved when she has no business to do so. Unbelievable, that she thinks it was ok to try and trick Saga that way. It’s none of her business whether Saga goes to her father’s funeral or not. She’s not handling Saga well at all. The board situation was funny, her not being used to the process she doesn’t know that Saga normally runs through the case that way. Her talking to Saga about the performance reviews was not so amusing, and people say Saga lacks empathy. It was a little cruel almost, to tell of the things Hans had been keeping from her. Whether or not Hans possesses any other secrets, that will bother Saga, that he lied to her.

On the subject of Hans, they found him at the Ghost Train. But they only found him because it’s what the killer wanted. He led them to Hans, the ticket for the ghost train was in Helle Anker’s car along with her heart. It’s interesting that he kidnapped him but didn’t kill him, he did however take his right hand which he uses later to guide them to the next victim.

The third victim is Lars-Ove Abrahamsson, a 72 year old retired PE teacher. The scene is set up in a similar way as the other two were, but this one is a little more disturbing. I have no idea what it’s meant to mean. Helle Anker was missing her heart and it was used to lead them to Hans. He was missing his right hand which was used to lead them to Abrahmasson who was missing his penis, which one can only assume will play a part in leading them to the next victim.

Lars-Ove Abrahamsson - murder scene 1 Lars-Ove Abrahamsson - murder scene 2The scene at the end of the fourth episode was very touching. I don’t imagine Saga would have talked like that with anyone before. I just hope that Hans really doesn’t have any major secrets to hide, that Saga won’t end up having any reason to be angry with him.

She told Hans about her mother and what happened. What I find interesting is that she said her mother made her and her sister ill. So Saga already knows for definite then but she still wants proof. She knows she’s right but she needs evidence, it’s the way she thinks, the way she works. Knowing or believing something isn’t enough, she needs to be able to prove something is true.

One thing is for sure Rikard is not the killer. He did kill Fabian Christensen but not the others. That’s why they found his fingerprints on the car but nowhere else. Plus the fact they found prints at all is a clue. The killer was seen wearing gloves at the beginning of the first episode, he wouldn’t be leaving prints anywhere. Also whilst he may be mentally unbalanced he’s probably not physically capable of carrying out all of this, of drugging Hans and then transporting him. Another reason proving he wasn’t the killer is the photo he included of Christensen with his letter to Andersen, there weren’t photos of the other victims, he didn’t claim responsibility for the others. The police tried to use his obsession with Andersen to trap him, providing him with his next target. A Danish army commander named Bente Knudsen. It didn’t work, he went after Helle Anker’s wife instead. He got away from that one but was caught at Andersen’s flat when he held her daughter hostage.

So taking away Christensen the victims are Helle Anker, Hans and Lars-Ove Abrahamsson. Two Swedes and a Dane. Two men and one woman. A gender rights activist, a retired PE teacher and a police officer. When Christensen was still considered one of the victims Andersen’s vlog connected them all but the third victim has no connection it. At least none that Andersen was willing to share, it’s possible she was holding something back. After all she didn’t want to tell the police about the letter.

To work out an possible reason why someone would want to hurt Hans they called in his ex-wife. I read a theory online that has her as the mastermind of all this, theorising that they wouldn’t introduce a character without a specific purpose for them. But that’s not always true with The Bridge, they’ve done that before and besides she did serve a purpose. That rather amusing conversation in which she asked if Hans seemed at all different since he’d gotten married to Lillian. To which Saga told her, yes he’s late in the mornings sometimes and he wasn’t before. It’s not easy to work out if Saga realises the implications of what she’s just said, let alone how it may not the kind of answer she was looking for.

So to sum up, they’ve got Rikard in custody, Hans is safe and they know have a third victim who so far has no connection to Andersen’s vlog.

Question is how many more victims are there going to be and is it going to be one of the new characters introduced,  I wonder if Anna may not be a target. The posed photo with her family got me thinking this. Also there’s a parallel of sorts between her and Saga, a controlling mother.

Random things to mention:

When Henrik introduces Saga he says her name but not where she’s from. Saga adds “Lanskrim Malmo” herself. It’s one of those little moments that I really appreciate, it just gets better every time you see it.

Anna’s affair with that teenage boy is potentially about to become a very public affair. It’s on the front of a newspaper, question is, does this have anything to do with the case.

Henrik is oddly suited to Saga, they suit each other. I didn’t see that coming, them ending up at the singles club or them sleeping together. I think they could be a good couple, I think that would be nice.

I’ve been reading online people’s thoughts and theories, including thoughts on Saga and how well they portray her autism. What’s interesting to me is the autistic people who insist it’s not a good or realistic portrayal of autism because Saga is nothing like them. Well why would she be. For one thing she’s a fictional character and for another she’s an individual, no two people with autism are alike just like no two NTs are alike. I was surprised to read people saying that because she’s so intelligent she should be able to work out how to act around other people. If a NT said that I wouldn’t be too surprised but I would be and was very surprised to read an autistic person writing such a thing. Because they should know better, it’s not about intelligence. She can study these things, learn about them and even maybe sometimes use what she’s learnt in the appropriate situation. But it’ll never come naturally to her and it would be exhausting to do that all the time. In fact if she did commit to that she wouldn’t be able to do her job, she would spend all her time and energy on maintaining that facade. Of course that assumes she’s even interested in doing so. If one doesn’t care about being different then they won’t be motivated to learn to act in the way other people think they should.

And as for her not being a good portrayal of autism because they can’t identify with her or because they don’t think she’s anything like them consider this, I hadn’t thought about myself having anything in common with her, not until someone told me Saga reminded them of me. What’s most interesting about this fact is that they said we sounded alike. It’s interesting because of the language difference, Saga speaks Swedish, I speak English with the person in question yet still they say we sound alike. That we both have the same blunt and matter of fact manner of speaking. My point is I didn’t see that or just never thought about it, maybe those people do have something in common with Saga but they just can’t or don’t want to see it.

The Bridge III – Episode 2

The second episode opens with Lise Friis Andersen on TV expressing some quite extreme views about a priest who performs same sex marriage ceremonies, including the view that things were better in the past when people like the priest would have been stoned to death. It seems someone is paying very close attention to her words because said priest is murdered, strangled to death in his car. He’s posed in a similar manner to the others, the same joker smile but there’s no body parts missing. That may not matter of course, the MO can change, it’s the signature that always stays the same. But seeing as how it was released to the media, who knows. The priest also got a typed letter but he didn’t get to read it.

At the scene Saga and Henrik have another amusing conversation in which she answers his question about what the smiley faces are about very comprehensively, leading him to call her “Wiki.” I don’t think he says it in a mean way, it doesn’t sound like that at least.

So, two victims now, both with a connection to Lise, but the police are focusing on Morten. He served three tours in Afghanistan and the last one ended badly. He and two other men were captured and tortured after being accused of raping a woman. He keeps saying “I didn’t touch her.” Is that what he’s talking about? Does he because of the PTSD think it’s the people who tortured him that are after him?

In his trailer they find a typewriter and the heart of what turns out to be a deer in the fridge. Saga also finds a note on his fridge door, which reads “L369G4Z.” John doesn’t find anything when he tries to work out what they are. So it’s not a registration number for a vehicle. At least not a Danish or a Swedish one anyway. It may be related to Afghanistan. Perhaps a license plate, or grid co-ordinates or something like that. Or it could be as John suggested a kind of personal code. Or I guess it could be  a password for something. Whatever is going on with Morten I don’t think he has anything to do with the case, he seems too disorganised to pull all of this off. Question is, does he know anything about what’s going on.

Having found the crime scene now, they have another lead to track, the cameras from the most likely route the killer took. There’s also a few more related details they know now thanks to Henrik. The first man arrived at the site at 5:20am and the gate wasn’t locked. Which of course we already know because we saw the killer break the lock. The cameras were turned off at 5:10am. Security were last there at 3:47am. So it’s reasonable to think that perhaps the killer was familiar with the pattern of their patrols, that there’s not very many of them. Either because he has a connection with the company or from simply studying them.

From what medication he’s taking and his visit to the doctor it seems Morten does indeed have PTSD. Having left his medication behind he goes to his doctor to get more, but encounters Saga and Henrik on the way out. He does however get away from them.

In the car Saga and Henrik have a most interesting conversation related to his constant texting and relationships. It is very different to how it would have gone with Martin, he could not hide his amusement at how blunt Saga is and her lack of boundaries. But Henrik handles it a lot more coolly and barely comments on it. There’s a bigger surprise in store with the re-appearance of Saga’s mother. She appeared at Saga’s apartment at the end of the first episode and Saga freaked out. That scene was well done, the way she reacted to it. I like how they showed the way in which she calmed herself down, by taking the books out of line and then lining them back up again. I don’t know where they got that little detail from but it’s very accurate in terms of portraying an autistic character. Her mother’s presence is no more welcome this time, nor is the file she has about Saga’s sister. I do hope we get some answers about this and it’s not left unresolved.

One thing I know for sure, I do not like her mother at all. The way she tries to manipulate her, whether Saga is right or not about her having Munchhausens, she’s right that she’s not a good person to have around. It’s disturbing, the way she says she’s proud of her and then straight away asks Saga if she can look at her. She only does that because she knows she finds it difficult, she’s trying to make her feel insecure, to doubt herself.

On the subject of mothers and not handling things well, Lise’s daughter Karen did exactly what her mother told her to, she attacked the bully and understandably the school aren’t pleased about it. Any sympathy I once felt is now gone, the bully didn’t attack her, she wasn’t defending herself, she just went up to her and hit her. She really is her mother’s daughter it seems.

Meanwhile Aleks talks once more to his friend and agrees to meet up with him. A meeting which unsurprisingly ends in him discovering he’s being set up. Confirming that the man at the flat was most likely there to do him harm.

On the subject of Henrik I’m sure now that he’s talking to himself, I wonder if it’s related to what he wants Saga’s help with, if he had a family but lost them somehow.

Whilst Henrik is at home having dinner by himself (since Saga rejected his dinner invitation) Saga is meanwhile visiting her old friend the coroner and finding out what the cause of death was. She also has a personal project for him to look at, her sister’s medical records. Saga’s not her usual self, she doesn’t want to run through their usual routine of her telling him what the cause of death was and if there’s anything distinctive about the body. All of this must really be bothering her for her to not want to do that.

The first victim was drugged with chloroform and the heart was removed most likely with an angle grinder. She was alive when the killer removed her heart, unconscious due to the chloroform.  The second victim is a different story. Strangulation is obviously the cause of death and just as they thought there’s no body parts missing. The difference in MO might be significant, it may not. If there’s  more than one killer, a group of them like the eco-terrorists then it may not be relevant.

The kidnapping of Hans, does it fit into the bigger picture or is it just Aleks’ own plan? Either way through that happening it’s confirmed that he never showed up at the halfway house he was assigned. Now I’m thinking about the man waiting for him differently. It looked suspicious, but that doesn’t mean it was. It could have been the landlord waiting for him and the reason Aleks didn’t go up there is because he was paranoid about someone being out to get him or because he has no intention of starting over and going straight.

Saga and Henrik visit a place that has been linked to Aleks in two previous investigations and sure enough he turns out to be there, and Hans in there too. But they don’t find him and after they leave Aleks makes his plans for sending a ransom demand.

Aleks is also in for a surprise of his own, he finds out that his former partner in crime is now in a relationship with his wife. So he has plenty of motive to want Aleks out the way. Aleks had it seems gone there to kill him but stops when he sees his ex-wife and their two children.

When the police receive the ransom demand Henrik recognises the newspaper, saying he saw it at Aleks’s place. But when they get there they don’t find Hans, he’s been moved. And it’s not the police that Aleks thinks he hears but someone else, someone who judging from their use of chloroform on Hans is the real killer. Question is, what does he want with Hans. He obviously didn’t use Aleks to kidnap Hans, that really was his own plan. It just seems odd, that two people would want to get Hans at the same time. And that the killer would be able to find him at Aleks. How did he know that Aleks had him? Somehow who’s privy to the details of the investigation, or at least aware of it?

Funniest moment of the episode has to be Lise Friis Andersen asking her husband if he thinks she could wear leather trousers and saying that Saga looked hot. Funny mostly just because of it’s randomness and because she’s the last person you would expect such a comment from. Henrik and him calling Saga Wiki I also like a lot. Speaking of Lise, she has three connections to the case now, her husband’s business is where the first victim was killed.

The Bridge III – Episode 1

Series 3 of The Bridge sees the return of Saga but there are a few changes this time around. For one thing the case whilst spanning the two countries does not have an actual physical connection with the Øresund bridge this time. In series 1 it was a body placed in the middle of the bridge which brought Saga and her Danish counterpart Martin together. Series 2 it was a boat which crashed into the bridge which reunited them. This however is not the only change, not only does the bridge not resume it’s literal role in the proceedings but neither does Martin. After having murdered Jens at the end of the previous series he is serving a ten year prison sentence for that crime. With that in mind I think it’s kind of fitting that the bridge has a less direct role in the case. It no longer needs to for one thing, the link between the two countries is already well established. For it’s not just Saga who has made a friend on the opposite side of the bridge but her boss Hans has too, he’s gotten together with his Danish counterpart Lillian.

As well as dealing with the change of Martin not being around Saga also has some other issues to contend with, namely the appearance of her mother which raises some interesting questions. Seems we might finally get to find out the full story about her childhood and what happened to her sister.

I thought it would be fun to put all my thoughts and theories in one place, not just to make it easier to keep track of it all but also to see how much I get right this time around. I haven’t really worked out how to structure it yet. For this first post I’ve just written it from my notes which means most of it is in chronological order but then my notes aren’t exactly very organized. Sometimes I just write wherever there’s space, which means some of it may be a little random.

Whilst Hans is enjoying his newly-wed status with Lillian, Saga is not having nearly as much fun with her in the end temporary partner Hanne. Saga’s real partner for the series is not introduced until the end of the episode. That is we meet him long before than but we don’t know who he is, well anyone who doesn’t read a TV guide anyway. Henrik is quite intriguing almost as much as the case itself in fact. I have a feeling he has quite the backstory. Something is most definitely off with him. I think his family are not really there, I think they are only there in his mind. When he gets back from his date he talks to who we assume is his wife about it. But it’s a very odd conversation for him to have with his wife, with that and other clues such as the way his daughters seemed to not notice him, one can only come to the conclusion they are a figment of his imagination. There’s also the question of the sleeping pills he’s taking and the mysterious powder he keeps in his car to wake himself up. I wonder if he’s getting any sleep at all.

But enough about Henrik, to the main story, the case. The opening scene of the first episode is in some ways reminiscent of the first ever episode, a mysterious man driving a car wearing black leather gloves on his way to dump a body. And just like Jens he takes care of the cameras though in a less skilled way than Jens did, there’s no hacking involved this time, a simple laser pointer sufficed for the job at hand. Before you even find out anything about what’s going on the first question is obvious, is this a continuation of the story from the previous series, does this have anything to do with the eco-terrorists. In an interview with Hans Rosenfeldt the writer he said that the body count last series was absurd and that this season was going to be more focused. I don’t know if that’s a hint that this case has nothing to do with the events of the previous series, or it could be an attempt to make you think that’s the case.

Whichever it is in many ways this series feels like it is in the words of the opening credits going “back to the beginning.” Saga is having to deal with the problems of dealing with a new person, the case is related to the themes of identity and social issues, in addition the role of family seems to be key. Both with the case and with personal matters. Hans is newly married, Saga is dealing with issues from her past and Henrik seems to have his own family related problems, though his issues are of a somewhat different nature to Martin’s issues from the first and second series.

I don’t know if this is the final series but if it was, then it would all fit well together. The show started with a female victim posed in particular way and if this is the end, then it would be ending that way too. Back then the killer’s interest in social issues turned out to be a smoke screen for his own personal agenda. I wonder if that’s the case here too, and if in fact it wasn’t the case with the eco-terrorists. Because when people  claim that they are doing something for other reasons, for reasons bigger than themselves, in actuality it comes back to themselves in some way. People don’t often care about issues unless they are directly affected in some way.

The victim is a woman named Helle Anker, a Danish citizen who is some kind of campaigner for LGBT issues and was opening a “gender-neutral” pre-school which seems to have angered a few people. She was found dead at a construction site, a block of apartments but she wasn’t killed there. The scene is posed, quite grotesquely so, the body is seated a table with there mannequins, a man and two children. All their faces are painted, a scary kind of joker smile.

The Bridge - mannequin 1 The Bridge - mannequin 2 The Bridge - mannequin 3 Helle Anker - murder scene Helle AnkerAs well as being a campaigner she was the founder of a fertility clinic which was established in 1988. She has two sons, a grown up one named Morten and a child with her current partner, her wife who reported her missing after she didn’t return from a meeting in Malmo.

In addition to the case there’s also three other story-lines, a woman who’s dealing with her daughter being bullied at school. An issue which the school don’t seem to be particularly interested in. The conversation between the teacher and the girl’s mother is most interesting. They seem to know who the culprit is but the teacher is adamant they can’t jump to conclusions. Additionally she makes an odd comment how the bullied girl should be grateful she has a strong family who care for her and are dedicated. I guess she’s implying that the bully doesn’t have this, perhaps she has disinterested parents or none at all, or a single parent family perhaps. Either way the teacher seems to be implying some sort of allowance should be made for the girl on this account. At first you naturally feel sympathetic for the victim, but afterwards when we learnt what her mother does for a living my views toward her changed a little. I’m not sure it’s right, but the thought was there, I started to wonder just why she seems to be unpopular at school. When her mother taught her to use violence to solve the situation I was even less sympathetic. Particularly as she wasn’t defending herself, she went straight up to her and attacked the girl. The girl’s mother is Lise Friis Andersen and seems to be a most unpleasant person who devotes most of her time to campaigning against people whom she thinks are destroying the nuclear family and it’s traditions. Her hate filled rants may prove to be central to the case in fact. People she criticizes have a nasty habit of turning up dead as will soon become clear.

Lise Friis AndersenThe other story-line is that of Aleksandr who we meet when he’s being dropped off outside a block of apartments. He however does not reach his intended destination, he ends up running away. It’s a curious situation, there appears to be someone waiting for him in one of the apartments, they seem to be somewhat suspicious. In fact as soon as I saw them I started to think about Jens and about him lurking in such a place whilst he was I think on the phone.

AleksandrThere is also more to the story of Lise Friis Andersen, not only is she involved through her hate filled words on the internet but there is the question of the young man Rikkard who works for her. He took a necklace of hers and later left it on her pillow. Also he keeps snakes and other exotic creatures as pets. I don’t know if that’s relevant somehow, his fascination with predators of a kind.

RIkardI especially wonder about him when it comes to Andersen’s words about “we are what we are born to be.” Her words on the subject of not focusing on gender as being central to one’s identity are equally interesting, she thinks without doing so kids would be “indefinable non-biological nothings.”

Most curious why she feels gender is so central to one’s identity. It is after all not the only thing which defines a person. People can have their own sense of identity without fitting into pre-defined boxes that society designates for them. It’s ok for people to go their own way. I wonder what is it about something different that scares them so much, why is it that people like her can’t stand being different. And how can she not see the contradiction in her views, she thinks she’s being brave and standing up for something, well that’s what the people she’s criticizing are doing, they are standing up for what they believe in. Except they aren’t trying to deny anyone their rights. It makes no sense, if gay people can in Andersen’s words live and work among everyone else, if she has no problem with them having the same rights as anyone else then why should it be a problem where they get married?

Things in society do change, things evolve over time, mostly for the better. How can a society which is more tolerant towards people who are different in some way be a bad thing? Surely a society in which people feel free and safe to be themselves is a good thing?

Enough about that, back to the case. Anker was kidnapped in Sweden, she didn’t go back over the bridge. She wasn’t killed where she was found, she was murdered inside a lorry trailer at a logistics company. Random fact, the CEO of the company is the actor who played the prime minister in series 3 of The Killing.

The main suspect so far is her grown up son Morten who is a veteran who spent time in Afghanistan. He maintains he had nothing to do with mother’s murder. He’s obviously paranoid and at first it seems like he may have something to do with this. Especially when he visits his mother’s wife, he tells her “I didn’t touch her.” But later events show he may not be talking about his mother. And his strange behaviour, including the wiring of his trailer with explosives which almost kills Saga’s temporary partner Hanne is most likely completely unrelated.

Morten AnkerIt’s also not immediately clear what Aleks has to do with all of this. He is digging something up, which you assume to be money. A supposition confirmed when he visits his friend who he accuses of taking the money. As it turns out him and his friend are most likely bank robbers. He just got out of prison, meaning that place earlier was most likely some kind of halfway house. The guy waiting for him seemed suspicious, a fact made clear by what he tells his ex-wife whom he visits next. The person who dropped him off told him it was the “one with the white curtains.” His friend’s house is all white, I wonder if that’s relevant.

From what he tells his ex-wife it seems likely that the person waiting in the flat was there to kill him. He accuses Hans of having made him give him information about who he worked for, of having threatened his family. More specifically of his wife losing custody of their daughters. I don’t think he has anything to do with what’s going on, at least not directly. Neither does Morten it seems, from what happened at the end of the episode it’s obvious he has PTSD.

Another interesting point is the letter the victim received. It was written on a typewriter and is markedly different from the other threats the victim received. It’s eloquent, there are no swear words and no threats about rape or sexual assault. Indicating that it’s a different kind of person who’s written this in comparison to the kind of people who usually send her hate mail, or that they have a very different agenda. Hans and Saga both find the wording of two particular sentences curious but don’t explain why. Saga begins to say “she was found” but Hans interrupts her saying “I know.” The victim was found in a construction site, a block of apartments, how is that relevant to the following is what I can’t work out:

“You don’t know what family is or what it should be. I can only guide you, if you carry on you must face the consequences.”

One final thing about Henrik when he wakes up he’s alone, the other side of the bed is made, as if no-one has slept there. He slept but he still takes some of whatever drug he keeps in the car. I wonder if he’s slept at all, he got into bed and wakes up the next morning, but who knows what happened between then, maybe even he doesn’t know. The only thing we know for certain at the end of the episode is that he’s Saga’s new partner and that he already knows who she is. Unlike Hanne not  only does he have no qualms about working with her but he actively wants to, in fact he volunteered but he gives no real reason why.

So to sum things up, one victim so far. As far as it would seem only one perpetrator, at least there are no indications of other people being involved. At least not directly. Aleks seems to have his own agenda, Morten doesn’t seem a likely suspect, Rikkard on the other hand is interesting. It’s a little early to be forming theories but my initial one revolves around him and his obsession with his employer Lise. Partly because of what Saga said when her and Hanne were discussing the removal of the victim’s heart. Saga said that it could be about becoming one with the victim or about control issues, or it could have been taken as a keepsake. Perhaps by the kind of person who likes to exert control over other people by taking their jewellery and then returning it without their knowledge.  Also, becoming one with the victim, is that the same kind of thing he’s doing by wearing Lise’s necklace?

I also have another idea about Rikkard, and this may be completely off the mark but then maybe it’s not. Besides that’s the fun of it. Anyhow, what if the key to the victim being targeted isn’t just what she does now but what she used to do. What if her fertility clinic is relevant to this. Because the work she did there could also be considered as messing with nature, with allowing people who shouldn’t have children to have them. And what if Rikkard is one of those people. What if he sees his family as not his real family because of how he was conceived, that he doesn’t consider his family to be a real one and he blames the victim for this. I also think his obsession with his employer may be key, that maybe he’s some kind of disciple of hers. That he takes her words a little bit too seriously. That’s the only kind of theory I have so far anyway. I just hope they don’t make the same mistake as series 1, back then they introduced Sebastian so late and in such a way that it was blatantly obvious he was the killer.

Two final things I have to mention, I wish they would stop describing Saga as having a “special personality.” I just hope special is not used as in insult in Swedish like it is in English. Either way it really grates. I also have to say that I’m happy Thure Lindhart is playing Saga’s new partner. One of the things that worried me the most about this series was who was going to replace Martin, I think they’ve made a good choice. It’s also very amusing because Lindhart once played  a character called Franz in a film called The Christmas Party, and in that Franz was quite unique, he certainly had more than a few autistic traits anyway. He was also unbelievably sweet in said film. Random fact the film also featured Søren Malling who is best known for playing Det. Jan Meyer in series 1 of The Killing.