The Team: First Impressions

There’s something about European thrillers: they ooze style, sophistication and a dark humour that wouldn’t typically grace our screens. Their clever dialogue transcends the limitations of the subtitle, hooking our attentions from the outset. There’s also a certain unease that they promote; the action that takes place isn’t too far away for us to think ‘that’ll never happen here’ – it could, and it probably does.

The instant I seen the advert for a new Euro thriller starring Lars Mikkelsen, I knew I was going to watch it. Three cities, three murders and an array of acclaimed European actors. What’s not to like?

Well.

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Jasmin Gerat, Lars Mikkelsen and Veerle Baetens in The Team.

Having recently watched the pilot, I’ll admit, my expectations were high. I’ve always had a thing for Scandinavian drama (I’m even thinking of writing my next thesis on it), so you could say that I’ve been spoiled by the world-class drama to come out of the region.

The Team is a collaboration between Germany, Belgium and Denmark as three identical murders occur in each of their capital cities. The premise is intriguing but I’m afraid the pilot lacks the impact that is expected.

As each of the murders are detailed and as each nation steps up to join the ‘team’, I feel that the show has spread itself too thin. I’ll admit, introducing the ambitious narrative and ensemble of characters in only 60 mins is impressive, but, as a result, its initial impact suffers.

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It does have decent one-liners, contrary to their facial expressions.

I wouldn’t (and don’t intend to) write this off so soon: I’m intrigued by the multi-nation plot and The Team’s high production values give the impression that the series has a lot more to give.

However, I won’t be anticipating a compelling second episode.

If you’re new to watching European drama, this is the perfect entry series to choose – the primary language spoken is English, with about a third of the dialogue requiring subtitles – ideal if you’re not a fan of reading them.

If nothing else, The Team is introduced as a stylish crime drama that may yet prove to hold its own amongst the growing market of European thriller. So far, The Team is nothing special: I sincerely hope I will be proved wrong in the future.

If you’re in the UK, you can catch The Team on Friday at 9pm on More4 or catch up online.

Thanks for reading, mein freund.

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