Weekend TV – Wallander

Has there ever been a more depressing copper on telly? He’s like the poster-child for uniformed services suicides, and he could well do with some Prozac or something. Or a career change.

And I’m afraid I’m unconvinced by his passion. If his job makes him so miserable, how come he’s so emotionally married to it? Surely – unless he’s just a masochist – enjoyment of and passion for are a twin-set that must be worn to do such a job, yet he wears his love of his career like a hair shirt. And it’s boring.

The whole shebang depresses the bejesus out of me actually; the mournful music, the symbolism – such as white horses that end up dead – and Wallander’s grizzled, whiskered lack of attention to personal hygiene and disregard for how he looks, not to mention the often unnecessarily stark vistas, all add up to a hearty dose of misery.

The crimes are of course by necessity miserable, but does everything else have to be too?? And in this latest Wallander outing, we had misery about his daughter and her new bloke, and yet more misery about Wallander suspecting he was a closet racist, along with half of Sweden suspecting the same about him.

Even the writer of the original books found his protagonist made him miserable and he once announced that he was going to stop writing for the Wallander series as he felt “corrupted” by them.

This really is – and sorry to keep using the word but it’s the most apropos – miserable TV and I won’t be watching it again. If I want to be depressed by TV, I’ll watch Conservative Party broadcasts or one of the gazillion shows about global warming.

However, all the above is no reflection on Branagh’s portrayal which was, as pretty much everything he’s ever in, was flawless. I wonder though if he goes home after filming and has to do something to cheer himself up??

Lynn is an editor and writer here at Unreality TV and is trained psychotherapist and the author of two books. She's addicted to soaps, period drama and reality TV shows such as X Factor, I'm A Celeb and Big Brother.