Swedeness and Light

The Mirror, 1 December 2008
By Shelley Vision

I wonder how the Swedish Tourist Board feels about Wallander - the gloomy Kenneth Branagh detective series that began last night.

For a start, the country appears to have been occupied by Brits - Branagh, below, David Warner, Nicholas Hoult, among others, all speaking in crystalcut English accents.

Then there was the case - which started with a girl burning herself to death. Next the Minister for Justice was attacked. "A small axe I'd say," the forensics expert ruled. "A single blow." Oh that's all right then.

"Almost split his skull in two." Maybe not... He'd also been scalped. There were references to a five-year-old who'd "tried to cut his eyes out".

Everyone in Sweden seemed to be an alcoholic including Insp Wallander. "You seem to be in crisis," the criminal profiler told him. "You've split up with your wife. You've a difficult relationship with your daughter. And now your father has Alzheimer's."

Apart from all this, life in Sweden looked a picture.

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