The title, spoken by Wallander in a relationship therapy session, goes some way to summarising the man. Series 3 commences with Wallander, as played by Kenneth Branagh, settling into his new home with girlfriend Vanja, intent on trying to divorce his policework from his domestic life as best as possible. Of course, it's not long before the phone rings and duty befalls him. Off he goes to pick up on his obsessive behaviour at what he does best, a pondering policeman.
The standards in this series are maintained. Taut scripts and dramatisation from Peter Harness with an excellent cast. The atmospheric pastel transparent cinematography beautifully captures the Swedish locations. The flat,stunning scenery adds a feeling of melancholy in the almost constant light of daybreak. This perfectly complements Branagh's superb moody Wallander, who continues to give an understated, mournful, yet sensitive and intelligent performance. It has been a bone of contention as to the use of the English tongue in Sweden but I feel it adds to the package. It is a personal matter as to whether the Swedish versions with subtitles are more enjoyable. This is not a competition with Rolf Lassgard or Krister Heriksson. Branagh's Wallander is a man of few words but with facial expressions that reveal as much, as do the silences that punctuate the delivery. He seems to prefer to work alone as much as possible, using colleagues in the team as and when necessary. His air of despondency is driven by his work to the exclusion of developing and maintaining personal relationships (his wife, girlfriend and daughter, for example).
Series 3 comprises three feature length 90 minute episodes:
An Event In Autumn : The disappearance of a woman in the Baltic Sea and a skeleton uncovered by his beloved dog in the back garden of his home.
The Dogs of Riga : Two tortured bodies with Russian mafia connections are washed up in a raft on the Swedish coast. Latvian police become involved. The man in command is a corrupt manic-depressive who provides suitable fare for Wallander.
Before The Frost : Anna, a friend of Wallander's daughter, Linda, appears at his doorstep seeking his help but disappears just as quickly. A burnt woman is found in a woodland shallow grave. Wallander is on their cases. A somewhat plodding episode with a surprise ending.
These are sketches of mesmerising and memorable television. Branagh (as Wallander) tackles the cases with an almost casual manner, driven to solve the crimes, yet still achieving the results. Very different from the fast-paced police dramas we have come to expect on our screens. This is another marvellous chunk of enjoyable entertainment. Roll on series 4.