Crimes of Passion – Episode 4
Roses, Kisses and Death
So what will Nancy Drew be investigating this week? Five Go Mad in Sweden is into its fourth week. I alluded previously to the Swedes not being too keen on this and I understand that after the first one, it went straight to DVD. So, to this week’s episode with the usual backdrop of privilege and gentility.
We start with Fanny the clairvoyant reading her tarot cards and they show her roses, kisses and death. We haven’t seen any of the assembled throng in the room before other than Christer. He must be pleased to be already at the venue this week, as he usually has to travel from Stockholm.
The maid, Sofia, is listening in to the conversation about “Odd Gertrud” real name Gertrud Uddgren who had disappeared, many suspect murdered, several years ago. Next, the maid has gone outside with a torch and meets up with Bjorn and he is soon digging in the earth cellar. He quickly comes across a skeleton.
Then we are treated to the magnificent opening sequence, with the great music and titles. They really deserve a much better programme to introduce, but I digress.
Eje and Puck arrive (expect more dead bodies) and Eje is wearing glasses!! Not particularly impressive ones, but he seems to be trying to rock the Clark Kent look. They talk of how nice it is that Christer is engaged. What?? Serial womaniser Christer?? Some mistake surely!
Our wet twosome are soon meeting with Christer and fiancée Gabriella (Bella for short) and the rest of her family, as engagement guests. They are grandfather Frederik, his sons Jan-Axel and Otto, the latter’s wife Helene and Aunt Fanny. Local policeman Loving arrives with Bjorn to say they have found a body on the estate. Bjorn is also an Uddgren, and the son of the murdered Getrud.
Puck has a cold, but her nose is bothering her in more ways than one as hearing voices when in bed, her nosiness gets the better of her as usual and she sees that Otto and Frederik seem to be arguing. She is later woken up to be told that Frederik has had a heart attack. Family doctor Dr Severin has arrived.
Eje and Puck are called to see now bed ridden Frederik, who wants them to witness his rewritten will. He says that he wants to put things right even if it means taking the shame to the grave. The ever curious Puck doesn’t seem to question this at all.
We see Puck waken up at 3.25am, although I’m not surprised as she seems to have the loudest ticking clock in all of Sweden in her room. She sees someone leaving the house but can’t tell who. She goes back upstairs and sees in Frederik’s room that he appears to be dead, with Fanny motionless on the chair beside the bed and Puck can’t wake her up. She goes and wakes Christer who tries to get amorous, which seems to be his permanent state, but he is just half asleep and soon we see that Fanny had just had her coffee drugged. (Maybe not such a good idea to lubricate Fanny after all? I’m so sorry). Frederik is indeed dead and has been poisoned.
As we see Helene struggling to contain some of her assets inside her dress, I opine that she seems much more Christer’s type and I’m sure he will be getting with her before the end.
Christer is testing all the pills in the house to try to ascertain what had been put in Fanny’s coffee. He is crushing them up and seeing if any of them don’t make the coffee taste bitter. He eventually discovers one that had been obtained from Helene’s cabinet.
Christer, Eje and Puck are trying to find the rewritten will in Frederik’s room and Puck eventually finds it under the mattress. It has been amended to give large sums to Bjorn and Helene.
Eje has a seminar he has to leave to go to but Fanny persuades Puck to stay and help Christer. I’ve no idea why she does this.
Christer visits Bjorn and finds wet paint on his boat outside. He also takes a photograph from a table when Bjorn isn’t looking. As he leaves, we see that Bella had been hiding in another room. Christer then visits Dr Severin, lighting cigarettes wherever he goes. The doctor tells him that Gertrud had been a “good time girl” and that he had been with her at one point. He also says that Helene is pretty much addicted to drugs now. This time Christer steals Frederik’s medical file. Police procedure wasn’t big in 1950s Sweden. We see Frederik phoning to tell someone all about the visit after Christer has left.
Puck, snooping about again, sees Jan-Axel having sex with Helene (his brother’s wife). Christer goes to speak to Daniel, but finds that he has been shot dead. He also manages to let a dog into the room to walk right through the crime scene.
Christer’s fiancée isn’t pleased that he was checking her alibi, along with everyone else’s, for the time of the doctor’s murder. Puck and Christer find the same paint that was on Bjorn’s boat at the side of the water of the house they are staying at. Christer visits Bjorn who pulls a knife on him then runs off.
Helene tells Christer that Bella and Bjorn had been an item and that they had been together again. Frederik had put a stop to the relationship, but following his death, it was back on. He goes to see Bella but she isn’t in her room. She sees him go back downstairs. Christer gets a whisky and a cigarette and sits in a chair. After taking a drink he slumps in the chair and drops the glass.
Bella goes in to see Puck and tells her Christer is not back yet. She also warns her that the murderer is still out there. After Puck saying it is unlikely that she would be a target, Bella says “who knows what your sensitive nose might sniff out”. No, I’ve no idea either.
We see Bjorn back across on his boat again, then Puck wakening up. As the door handle turns to her room and someone enters, she hits them over the head with something, but it’s Eje who has returned from his seminar. She tells him he shouldn’t have sneaked up on her, and says, jokingly “I want a divorce!” Eje doesn’t seem to be harmed.
Puck joins Christer by the waterside and sees him throw his engagement ring in the water. They have a moment together and their “will they won’t they” goes on, something akin to David Addison/Maddy Hayes in Moonlighting or Ross/Rachael in Friends, but with the addition of one of them being married to the other’s best friend. Puck and Eje aren’t getting on well again and Eje tells her that “you make my head spin and not in a good way”. Try watching it Eje!
It seems increasingly that Puck is attracted to Christer simply because of the excitement of his world (and possibly the dullness of Eje). Do we want our two main characters to get together? Eje is Christer’s best friend. Puck is Eje’s wife. Christer will sleep with anyone. Do we care?
The noises coming from upstairs in the house have to be investigated and Puck actually lets Eje come with her to do so. It must be his birthday or something. There they find Fanny, Bjorn and Bella having a séance. Bjorn runs for it, but Eje and Christer manage to catch him on the staircase. Bjorn and Bella try to cover for each other by taking responsibility for killing Frederik, but neither of them was responsible.
So we end again with Christer and all the cast in a room, as the denouement is reached. He tells them that all the alibis they had given the local police for where they had been when Daniel was killed were bollocks. He must really be getting sick of everyone lying every week. Particularly so this week when it includes his fiancée.
But what’s this? Christer is doing all the talking! Clearly Puck’s powers of deduction/interfering don’t work when she has the cold, although as is always the way in this series, the murderer decides to just give in immediately that everyone is in a room together.
He had discovered from Frederik’s file that he had been unable to have children, so it was not he who had made Gertrud pregnant. Helene tells them all that Otto was impotent and had never had sex and that she had done well to last 15 years before straying.
We have a flashback to Otto as a soldier, where he looks like Sheldon from the Big Bang Theory. He and Gertrud had been in love and he had got her pregnant. He made an appointment to see Daniel to have an abortion, but she didn’t turn up and wanted to keep the baby. The scandal would have been too much, so he shot her. His father Frederik had a heart attack after he told him of this, thinking he already knew, and his dad had told him he had to come clean or he would do it for him, so he had to kill him too. When Daniel phoned to tell Otto of Christer’s questions, he decided to tie up that last loose end. So 3 murders, two of which are to cover up what he had done originally, yet he spills the beans at the first hint of being caught.
There’s just time for Christer to get together with Helene, newly released from her sex free marriage and he newly fiancée free. She tells him that he is not one for grieving; completely ignoring the fact her husband is a triple murderer and will be going to Swedish prison for a very long time. He says “In the right company, it can be quite pleasant”. Up on the screen comes the word “slut” which is the Swedish word for “the end”. It’s not clear whether they mean Christer or Helene.
An episode about sexual frustration, with none of the sexy. How I yearn for The Killing, Borgen, Spiral or Salamander on a Saturday evening. Ok maybe not the last one.
Two weeks left!
- When people find a skeleton, why is it always the head which is uncovered first?
- With a Fanny featuring again this week, are we back to a pussy again next week?
- Christer’s hair seemed to have returned to normal.
- Puck should have business cards with ‘dead body finder’ on.
- Wasn’t particularly nice to refer to Bjorn as “gypsy” all the way through.
- What was with the endless need to carry candles in the house in the dark? Did the lights only work during the day?
- It has seemed to calm down on the cigarette smoking in the last episode and had been replaced with cake, but the fags were back with a vengeance tonight.
- When Christer was speaking to Bjorn, the translation came up “You’re alibi”. Aaaarrrggghhh!
- Have we discovered the point of Eje yet?
- Did anyone else find Christer getting engaged to Bella completely implausible?
- Were Eje’s glasses maybe some kind of cold deflector? This would explain why he didn’t seem to have any trace of the cold despite kissing Puck on the lips at least 4 times.
- I seem to be caring less each week who the actual murderer is.