More than World War II, more than New Labour, more than the rumoured reforming of Oasis, Manchester United’s woes in the Champions League, the sequel to Black Panther, and Brexit, what dominates the British conscious more than anything is the weather.
A second ‘Beast From The East’ has landed and begun conquest of the British Isles, rivalling the threat of the Romans and Vikings.
However, with a bit of British stiff upper lip and armed with the empire’s old adage to keep calm and carry on (most importantly my internet connection carried on) I battened down the hatches and sat sublimely next to an open fire with chestnuts roasting on the hearth whilst watching the latest instalment of Scandi Noir.
Below The Surface is a slick sharp sexy crime thriller that catapults itself above the good, but slightly dated Killing, to be placed at the head of the Nordic TV feast next to the king of Scandi Thriller Han’s Rosenfeldt’s The Bridge.
In the center of Copenhagen, under the impressive dome of the Marble Church, fifteen civilians are being held hostage by armed captives demanding 4 million euros for their release. Philip Nørgaard, a Daniel Craig Casino Royal-looking task force officer, is assigned head of the case to negotiate the hostage’s safe release.
Expect to be thrown through twists and turns like an ice cool Scandi breeze blowing across the sleek outlines of some steel and glass cube Scandinavian people live in in their fashionable woollen jumpers while contradictingly and somewhat suspiciously drinking G&T’s with sticks of cucumber in them.
Once I had enough of the sex I went to the psycho and transferred my attention to the GP waiting room of British TV, Channel Four.
Noel Fitzpatrick is no routine vet. He performs surgeries on your sick budgerigar or limp hamster that make House look like he’s merely administering a plaster to heal the ailments of his anguished patients.
Supervet caught my attention merely because of the expressions of the clients that come into Fitzpatrick Referrals.
Sitting in the waiting area with snuggles the sneezing cat or buster the hyperactive dog, Noel stomps up to them and with no bed side manner at all says ‘your pet needs a callasteronic hyperconducive inventalated rear sternum op, and two of his legs will need to be replaced with crystal infused hyper-reactive titanium prosthetics’. And you sit and you watch the owner’s face drop partly because he didn’t realise his pet was so ill, and partly because he’s thinking ‘how much does a crystal infused hyper-reactive titanium prosthetic cost?’
Finally, when the fires burnt down, the chestnuts are sitting on the hearth as uneaten cinders, and you realise the ‘Beast From The East’ isn’t so much referring to the weather but a paranoid megalomaniac Russian dictator sending spies to ‘remove you’ because you’re seen as a threat to oligarchic monopoly, you can always stick on a bit of Dad’s Army.
Classic slapstick comedy from Captain Mannering and co. They don’t make them like they used to. Although if Noel had his way…
Below The Surface is on Saturdays BBC Four and BBC iPlayer
Supervet is on Channel 4 Wednesdays 8pm
Dad’s Army is on forever on BBC