Wallander: Final Review
Wallander Oh Wallander, what will i do without you? My special Saturday nights spent in fantasy trips to Sweden, immersed in the day to day life of your loves and losses is all disparu.
Forgotten fantasy night might be more of a correct description since i long ago forge that they were fantasy. When they became real.
Yes, I am suggestible to flights of fancy and dramatic constructions. As with all of us, OK some of us, i believe that the characters are real if seen often enough. However, unlike some, i wouldn’t veer to the extreme of shouting “babysnatcher” at the Eastenders actress involved in that story line as she walked down the street. This happened.
However if i happened to see the actor who played Wallander i’m not sure. I think i might briefly blush and brush off a girly swoon beefore takinbg myuslefg metaphorically in hand before i succumbed to the urge to look round for Pontus, Isabelle, beardy bumptuous Martinson and ever stolid Svartmen.
Whilst on my reality check i realise that Svartmen barely had any dialogue. Neither did Martinson. Yet such was their skill at creating their characters, i never even noticed this. it wasn’t important. They were Martinson & Svartmen.
They had moments of humour and natural comedy, just like Wallander. Sometimes Martinson was the funny man to Wallander’s straight man. Svartmen, who again in retrospect, barely moved his face at all, still managed to convey a symphony of meaning with his eyes.
Martinson did fight for his promotion, his respect when he challenged Wallander who replied in piercing honesty:
“Its because I don’t want to give it to you, I know I only have a short time left to do my job”.
Martinson responded to this humility, Wallander let him have more say (in things) and ungrudgingly brought him along to interviews and treated him as his equal, his ultimate successor.
Martinson flowered under this treatment, grew in seeming stature and confidence, grew more beardy, more strong of voice. Developed his own Swedish style. All cardigans and cool glasses. Even his hair seemed to grow, more bushy and curly of end. He developed his own gravitas and quiet dignity. We could almost see him becoming a different king of Wallander one day. If we could bear not to think of Wallander not being there.
Wallander extended the same quiet, calm and careful nurturing towards the rookies, Pontus and Isabelle. For me personally, the most moving indeed touching evidence of Wallander’s love. & I’m not prone to Hallmark moments. Seriously averse even to using the L word. however in consideration i have to admit that is what Wallander gave to the rookies, albeit a parental love.
I think it was made clear at the end when Wallander says to Katrina:
“You’ll protect those you love” over Isabelle’s gun fiasco. I already knew deep down that he loved Isabelle like a daughter. They had linked together visually in that wonderful quiet market scene, as they walked shoulder to shoulder into the twilight.
Wallander had reached out to Isabelle calmly, steadfastly, again & again. Accepting her stubborn refusal to trust him or let him in. Protecting herself, her independence, her learnt aloneness through pain. Protecting herself from more pain, in case he let her down.
Slowly but surely she saw that he was steadfast, unchanging, he may shout sometimes but that, he told her was because he was worried about her. He was reliable. He did what he said he would do. he didn’t run away when she did something bad. He stayed. Slowly she inched open her protective shield and trusted him. She told him bad things. Did them too. He still loved her.
***Wallander & Katrina***
Well, i just don’t know about Wallander & Katrina. i do wonder if it was deliberately left open. Perhaps what you thought happened between them depended on what you wanted to believe. As my readers know, i was rooting for what i believed was possibly their budding love, organically growing, slowly throughout. For this reason i was assiduously examining the last episode, in hope, with hope, for signs of its possible fruition.
Hence i seized gladly upon the signs of physical affection between them, the possible thawing of Katrina’s inexplicable froideur of a few weeks ago. And yet. And yet.Yes, Katrina fell into Kurt’s arms on the beach. she tenderly stroked him as he lay, as she described it to him, exhausted on the couch after a long day of car bombs, Jussi nearly dying and dark and dastardly deeds of a very bad man and a frightened, threatened young girl.
Yes, Katrina asked Kurt:
“but what if you had another life?” when he, devastated at her sudden news of leaving, declared :
“this is my life”
meaning his job.
And yet. They never kissed. (thank God) She only hugged him when visibly deeply upset. She could have been stroking/soothing him as a dearly loved friend. lets remember it was only a few weeks ago she shut him down over dinner, rebuffed his happy secure knock on her window.
“I have so much chicken”.
Katrina pulled down the shutters. Hurtfully and inexplicably all of a sudden Poor Kurt, all happy and expectant, playing his mini-record player in his kitchen, secure, he thought, in their easy friendship, hanging out at each others homes. Supping tea on the verandah smoking in tandem.
All cruelly dashed with a surprised and inconvenienced look signalling I’m really doing something much more exciting. What the hell do you think you’ve become so accustomed to? The ultimate freeze out. Even then, though hurt and surprised, Kurt didn’t get it. He persists, still full of confidence back at work:
“We must do that dinner!”to which Katrina replies:
“come into my office please”
Once inside she imperiously declares:
“this cannot be:I am a Public Prosecutor, you are a Policeman”!
What! Even i as, a woman didn’t get it. was she saying Kurt was too lowly (in status) for her to go out with? or that their relationship would be unprofessional? or was it just a line? Was Katrina a snob? I hadn’t figured her for that. The Swedish generally seeming to be wholly un-snobby so far. What one earth did Katrina’s backtracking mean?
I could only deduce, after much heart search and brain exercising-both heart and brain i felt was needed is this: the awful idea that Katrina just didn’t see Kurt Like That. Only as a friend. Even worse, she might see him as too old for her! She hadn’t been romantically interested at all.
But now Kurt, possibly mistaking her hope inspiring comment:
“but what if you had another life?”
has thrown in his whole life, his beloved job which he is extremely good at, his beautiful house by the sea, and followed her, on a train to Stockholm. along with Jussi.
Yes, it was a beautiful touch and a returning of points to the theme of Wallander’s heartbreak over his daughter for him to come full circle and meet, connect and protect the little girl. A new chance. A new start. Jussi licking all her horrors away his tongue almost bigger than her face. Her beatific smile. Kurt’s smile towards her, full of peace and protection.
(Oh dear i fear i’m sounding perilously Hallmark)
The little girl a worthy adversary to the Bad man. Clearly a fearsome Detective in the making. Could she and Wallander start a new life? Could he be a constant, reassuring figure in her life, even though she is on her way to a foster home? Perhaps. Perhaps too i am being too doubtful.
However i fear Katrina will not be quite so keen or even needful of Kurt’s friendship in busy, metropolitan Stockholm. She is still fairly young, beautiful,. could have her pick of men. Katrina may well regard Kurt as a loved yet elderly uncle figure friend.
Kurt, you left your life for her! & Karin the pathologist i believe was in love with you & maybe Elba the receptionist too!