Character of the week: Saga Norén

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It seems strong and emotionally repressed women in law enforcement are required to rid the Scandinavian countries of the criminal element. Saga Norén of The Bridge exchanges the stubborn determination of The Killing’s Sarah Lund for amusing and incredulous social awkwardness. However, these tenacious heroines are equal in the fact that they simultaneously sacrifice their personal life by obsessively immersing themselves in their work and leave no case unsolved.

Norén is a brilliant and beautiful, presumably thirty-something homicide detective with an icy exterior that reflects the climate of Malmö, Sweden. From the first episode of The Bridge we immediately assume Norén is marking her territory with a jurisdictional attitude against Martin Rohde (Kim Bodnia); her male equivalent from Copenhagen, who have both been tasked with solving a murder on the Øresund Bridge that connects Denmark and Sweden. In order to maintain the security of the crime scene and prevent evidence being tampered with, Norén outright refuses the passage of a patient en-route to have a heart transplant at a nearby hospital. This is when we are introduced to her blunt and frank demeanour. Her black-and-white perception and rationalisations are dished out not just to her colleagues but anyone in general.

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The pairing of Norén and Rohde seems to spark an intrigue and fascination in her reactions and causes her to open up a little more to Martin, who is also amazed by her unconventional behaviour. The two are polar opposites but manage to find a mutual respect for their high ranking detective skills. One cannot argue that Norén is not organised: she can structure time out of the office and pursue carnal pleasures when she deems it appropriate and necessary. The concept of dancing around the obvious or sparing people’s feelings is lost on her.

Saga’s odd behaviour and cold expressions have made her one of the most beloved characters in all of Nordic Noir and her partnership with Martin has become one of the most unlikely friendships in television history. Saga’s journey will continue in Season 3 of The Bridge which is currently being filmed.

The Bridge Season 1 and 2 are available to purchase here