The international success of Danish thriller The Killing
, and its subsequent American remake, opened many people’s eyes to the quality of Scandinavian drama. The first series of political thriller Borgen
was, consequently, one of the first to capitalise on it.
It comes from the producers of The Killing, as it happens, but the similarities between it and Borgen aren’t that plentiful. Rather than crime, Borgen focuses on the Danish Parliament, and the people within it. Of particular interest is the country’s first female Prime Minister, Birgitte Nyborg Christensen, who comes to power off the back of a heavy victory. As she soon discovers, though, the pressures of government are very different. This densely plotted, twisty, compelling drama takes time and diligence in exploring this, and soon becomes extremely absorbing.
Laced with the same intelligence, depth and commitment of The Killing, Borgen richly rewards those willing to look further afield for their television drama. Those going in expecting the same thing they’ve been served up before, though, might just be disappointed, not least because the subject matter is different.
But the quibbles aimed in the direction of Borgen are mild at best. For ultimately, the ten episodes of this first series, which are willing to explore both the politics and families within Danish government, are gripping, compulsive television drama. From start to finish, it’s a terrific series, and long may it continue. --Jon Foster
is a drama sensation from the producers of the acclaimed series The Killing
. Following the intricate and complicated lives of politicians, media spinners and the reporters who feed off their triumphs and failures, Borgen
uncovers a world of political and personal intrigue. The setting is Borgen, the nickname for Denmark's Parliamentary building, otherwise known as "The Castle". After scoring her party a landslide victory through her idealism and work ethic, the smart and sexy populist Birgitte Nyborg now faces the biggest dilemma of her life. The question is: Will she succumb to pressure of compromise on her ideals and face consequences both on and off the political stage?
"Simply unmissable" *****--The Times
"Intriguing from the start, deftly paced and retains interest throughout" *****--The Financial Times
"Why can't we [the UK] make political dramas this gripping and sexy?" *****--The Independent
"Absorbing drama with a captivating performance from Knudson, possibly the most fully rounded female character on TV" - *****-- The Independent
"Birgitte Nyborg is the best thing since The Killing's
Sarah Lund"--The Guardian