Character of the week: Johan Gustav Dåådh

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Johan Gustav Dåådh is the main character in the historical Swedish crime drama Anno 1790, who is portrayed by the Peter Eggers.

Dåådh is a police inspector in Stockholm, tasked with solving crimes from the capital. His ideologies are progressive and advanced with influences from Voltaire’s ‘free thought’ rationalised philosophy. Therefore, his professional perspective to ascertain the truth through logic and reason is viewed as unconventional to the bourgeoisie figures of authority, who seek to uphold traditional values. Dåådh is an advocate of a Republican state over a monarchy, whom he does not accurately represent Sweden at this time in history.

The first time we meet Dåådh he is on the front-line; serving as a physician during the Russo-Swedish War between 1788 and 1790. In the opening scene he tends to a wounded man in a calm and collective manner while he states how his fellow officers’ disapprove of the King for launching them into a controversial and hopeless battle.

He has limited skills and knowledge of surgery and adamant to pursue a career as a navy doctor, but he is more vocal and easily belligerent when it comes to commenting on the war. Upon his return to the city his scientific mind is counterbalanced with a romantic entanglement as he experiences love at first sight with Magdalena Wahlstedt (Linda Zilliacus) the wife of one of Dåådh’s superior officers. The two bond over the revolutionary ideas they both possess and it is Magdalena who convinces Dåådh to stay and take the post of District Commissioner.

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Dåådh is also an atheist and his religious views are contrasted by his other main relationship in the programme with his assistant Simon Freund (Joel Spira) who is very much a man of God, which can often create a yin-yang relationship of polar opposites.

In an interview with ‘MHz Worldview’, Peter Eggers said the following about Dåådh “I’m playing the doctor coming home from the war where he saw thousands and thousands of men getting slaughtered by the Russians. He wants to join the intellectual revolution, but not by violence.”

Based on an original idea by executive producer Johan Mardell and writer Jonas Frykberg, Anno 1790 is a rich and detailed depiction on Sweden in the late 1700’s featuring some stunning cinematography from the award winning cinematographer Geir Hartly Andreassen. Petter Eggers is an accomplished Swedish actor who is best known for his role as Dåådh but also appeared in Season 3 of Borgen.

Season 1 of Anno 1790 is available to purchase here.