BBC Four is the place to be for Scandinavian drama at the minute. Following on from the success of The Bridge, River, and Trapped (which I reviewed last month), this month sees the DVD and Blu-Ray release of the latest Nordic Noir & Beyond TV series, Follow The Money.
After concluding on BBC4 on 16th April, the first series of this Danish crime drama will be released on DVD and Blu-Ray this week.
Created by Jeppe Gjervig Gram, who co-wrote Borgen, Follow The Money, originally titled ‘Bedrag‘, is set in the world of economic crime around one of Denmark’s leading energy companies, Energreen, and takes us into the world of economic crime in the banks, on the stock exchanges, and in the board rooms.
The series centers around three main characters: a policeman (Thomas Bo Larsen) trying to figure out what is going on inside Energreen; a woman (Natalie Madueño) that works for Evergreen in the legal department, hired by the enigmatic CEO of Energreen (Nikolaj Lie Kaas), who stumbles upon a secret that can change everything; and a mechanic (Esben Smed) who gets involved in a criminal network and finds himself a part of a big conspiracy.
Follow The Money takes a bit of getting into. There’s much to learn about Danish current affairs, but it soon follows in the footsteps of the nordic dramas we have found ourselves addicted to as of late, with the finding of a body. When the body of a worker at a local wind farm is fished out of the sea by the unhinged police officer, Mads, his investigation begins.
What follows is a number of intertwined stories of a lot of bad people; a tale full of fraud, corruption and organised crime. Follow The Money is all about greed, propelled by characters who need to make and spend a lot of money. After only a couple of episodes, there is so much going on that you would never have guessed what can happen behind the scenes of an environmentally friendly energy company.
The series feels much slower to the likes of Trapped and The Bridge, but each episode fits in a lot of action and the investigation is just as intriguing, which is heightened by a mix of genres to keep the plot rapidly developing.
In between the science and business talk and the thrilling investigation, there’s also a lot of drama. Because of this, we get to know each character in-depth, as the action at the front of the story often takes a break to detail the individual lives and background stories of each of its characters.
These subplots can often take the attention away from the excitement, but they also open up the characters’ emotional sides, allowing us to warm to each of them more and highlighting the strength in the series writing. This way, we also get to know the characters on their own, outside of the boardroom; we get to see what drives and motivates them, but also what twists their morality and turns them to such extremes, as we begin to better understand how they all play their parts.
With so much to find out and character traits constantly unravelling, you’ll be gripped until the end whether the series grabs your attention straight away or whether it takes its time to reel you in.
Follow The Money is released on DVD & Blu-Ray Monday 25th April through Arrow Films and Nordic Noir & Beyond.