Hellfjord (2012)

Director: Patrik Syversen, Sebastian Dalén, Ole Giæver, Kenneth Olaf Hjellum, Vegar Hoel, Roar Uthaug
Writer: Zahid Ali, Stig Frode Henriksen, Tommy Wirkola
Cast: Zahid Ali, Stig Frode Henriksen, Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Thomas Hanzon, Pihla Viitala, Maria Bock
Part of: /slash Filmfestival‘s Slashing Europe
[Hellfjord is a TV series. I usually don’t review those but since I saw the entire first season at the /slash, I thought I’d make an exception.]

After a very unfortunate and very public incidence involving his horse, police man Salmander (Zahid Ali) gets relocated to the town Hellfjord where everything is just a little fishy. And that is not only because of the fish factory Hellfish, run by Bosse Nova (Thomas Hanzon). Soon Salmander literally stumbles on a body and teams up with local journalist Johanne (Ingrid Bolsø Berdal) to solve the town’s mysteries.

There is a lot that I enjoyed about Hellfjord but there are also elements that didn’t work for me at all. The end result is a very mixed bag of beans.


There is a lot of silliness going on here, some pun-related, some just a little stupid, and most of that silliness I liked a lot. (Bosse Nova still amuses me, for example. And the opening scene with the horse is absolutely fantastic.)

But some of the humor didn’t work for me at all. When Salmander throws up over and over again, it not only gets tired quickly, it didn’t amuse me in the first place. But even more annoying was Kobba (Stig Frode Henriksen) who ordered himself a bride from Finland, Riina (Pihla Viitala) who is supernice, smart, sexy and extremely capable. And yet during the entire show, Kobba treats her like shit and generally is a misogynistic ass. And I just don’t think that’s very funny.


The show has surprisingly high production value and good pacing. The parts of the humor that did work for me, worked extremely well. And I really enjoyed seeing Ingrid Bolsø Berdal again. She was fantastic (and she always looks so fucking different I barely recognize her).

Yet I don’t think that I’d watch a second season. And I’m not sure about the American remake that is apparently in the works. Maybe (if they amplify the right things and tune down the other things) I might enjoy that more. But I don’t think that will happen.


Summarising: if you don’t mind blunt humor, you could give this a try.

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