Find out about the top Christmas-themed Scandi series in store for you!
The Nordic countries are renowned for their cultural traditions, from folklore to festivities. Even the modern wave of Scandi crime and drama shows incorporate these elements as part of the narratives that keep us enthralled. With this in mind, fans can indulge in a host of Nordic Noir series, from The Killing to Modus.
Look closer and you’ll discover how truly festive Nordic Noir can be…
The traditional Faroese threads worn by Nordic Noir heroine Sarah Lund is perhaps one of the most festive images to stand out amidst the murder and mayhem on screen. The warm and cosy jumpers that Lund wore to work juxtaposed her icy demeanour and rogue investigation tactics. Maybe this bold costume choice subtly made audiences succumb to Lund’s hidden charms from the beginning? We think so.
Before The Killing captured our attention, the 100% wool sweaters were established in the Faroe Islands; the archipelago located in between Norway and Iceland. Now a popular item of clothing for international Nordophiles to own, the style has become prevalent in the styles of novelty Christmas jumpers found in high street shops and market stalls across the UK.
Sleigh Bells Ring Across Northern Norway
Another Nordic traditional is treated to an unforgettable televised experience with All Aboard! The Sleigh Ride. The immersive Slow TV special originally shown on the BBC takes the viewer on a 2-hour journey through the Karasjok region of Norway, 200-miles north of the Arctic Circle. Originally the path of an ancient postal route, we are transported across the snow-covered landscape of forest and frozen lakes, glimpsing rural land belonging to the indigenous Sami people.
It’s easy to get into the Christmas spirit with the mesmerising sound of sleigh bells and reindeers to guide you along the way! As well as virtually exploring the breath-taking views, audiences can learn more about the cultural history with pieces of trivia that pop up on the screen!
There may be no crimes to solve here, but the rural plains and mountains in Northern Norway are used as the backdrop for In Order of Disappearance, plus Jo Nesbø’s Midnight Sun.
Celebrate with Hygge
There’s that word again – hygge. We’re never quite sure if we’re pronouncing it correctly but if you welcome it into your lifestyle, you don’t need to worry about it! We got a master class in the Danish pastime from 1864 star Marie Tourell Søderberg, following an exclusive interview to celebrate the release of her book: Hygge: The Danish Art of Happiness.
Taking time out to relax and appreciate your family are core elements of Danish culture. Despite the dysfunctions of sibling rivalry in The Legacy and Men & Chicken, the bonds that unite us together are ever present. The concept applies to the comfort of hyggemad (hygge food). Snødbrod (open-top potato sandwiches), oatmeal with caramel sauce, apples, and roasted almonds, and morning rolls are perfect for Midsummer and the middle of winter too!
Whatever you’re enjoying as an escape from the norm, you can embrace hygge with your family, friends and favourite foods at Christmastime.
The Most Wicked Time of the Year
In comparison to the sub-genre of Christmas-themed horror films, Swedish series Modus dared to strike fear into our hearts with a murder spree during the holiday season. From the International Emmy Award-winning writers of Unit 1, The Eagle and The Protectors, Mai Brostrøm and Peter Thorsboe adapted Anne Holt’s fourth book of the Vik/Stubø series, Fear Not – just in time to be aired in the UK before Christmas!
Criminal psychologist and profiler Inger Johanne Vik (Melinda Kinnaman) returns to Sweden after working with the FBI to dedicate more time to her family, especially her autistic daughter Stina (Esmeralda Struwe). When Stina witnesses a murder, Vik is partners up with detective Ingvar Nyman (Henrik Norlén) to solve the mystery before her daughter becomes the next victim.
We do see presents, Christmas trees, decorations and even a gingerbread house – but there aren’t many glad tidings to be had. Nevertheless, Modus is addictively chilling and returns for a second season soon!
Wrapping Up Warm
Jack Frost is sure to be nipping at your nose if you hop on a ferry to Iceland during a storm. The chilling terrain featured in Trapped shows us how terrifying the wintry climate can be. However, UK viewers can enjoy the spine-tingling crime unfold, whilst safely wrapped up warm on the sofa in a festively hygge fashion!