Part satirical comedy, part crime drama, Swedish series Fallet is both overly familiar and refreshingly original at the same time. Spread across eight 30 minute episodes, you’d be forgiven for thinking Fallet will wind up like other satirical spoofs and lose its comedic edge late on. Fallet defiantly bucks that trend and manages to walk the fine line between serious drama and laugh out loud comedy to great effect right through to the final episode making for a surprisingly enjoyable series.
The first episode begins with a small town rocked following a gruesome murder that results in the body hung by his neck with blood stained rope and a bible in the deep bowels of the woods. The extremity of the case gains traction across Europe as British and Swedish police join forces to try to solve the murder. Fronting the investigation are two characters relying heavily on solving the case for their own personal reasons. Clumsy, hopeless Tom Brown (Adam Godley) has a reputation for failing to solve any case he’s given so as a last resort he takes on the Swedish murder to save his own job and reputation.
On the other side of the spectrum is trigger happy Swede Sophie Borg (Lisa Henni) whose lack of respect for authority sees her forced into taking the case to avoid being fired. The polar opposite characters have a surprisingly effective chemistry together and when their initial awkward interactions fall into a more respectful working relationship, the bulk of humour comes from the supporting cast around them, especially the hilariously hopeless chief of police Klas (Tomas von Brömssen) and his son Bill (Christoffer Nordenrot) who are consistently funny throughout the series.
What’s particularly surprising with Fallet is the way it manages to keep the comedy flowing until the very end of the series, especially given the intensity of the drama during the final episodes. There’s a good mix of humour here too and whether it be slapstick, parody or witty dialogue, Fallet delivers a keen eye for humour and conjures some real laugh out loud moments throughout its run time. The crime drama content itself is still good, albeit very clichéd, but there’ a noir feel to the 8 episodes that make this as thrilling to watch as it is funny.
The characters are ultimately what help bring this all together when the clichéd drama and comedic content begin to lose the effectiveness they had early on. Sophie and Tom are of course the focal characters of the show and have the most amount of work done to flesh their characters out although the ending does leave a lot to be desired after a strange plot revelation ties the two together. The charming supporting characters are a hoot throughout the series though and their comedic timing is on point and very much welcome, especially late on when the investigation gains some headway and the mystery is close to being solved.
The constant presence of comedy throughout Fallet’s 8 episodes are largely what make this such an enjoyable show. Usually with parodical comedies like this the humour tends to fizzle out midway through, changing the tone to one of sombre tension but Fallet bucks that trend, remaining consistently funny and clever throughout its run time. The plot is predictably clichéd as you’d expect from this genre although as a nitpick it would have been nice to see a little more innovation here to back up the comedy to really sell this as a one of a kind show. Still, the charming characters and entertaining script are ultimately what make this such an enjoyable series and proves it is possible to make a comedic drama remain consistently funny through to the final episode.