The Casebook Closes on the Brooding Swedish Detective in "Wallender: The Final Season"

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03 May 2016
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Wallander, The Final Season
Photo: Courtesy of Steffan Hill/Left Bank Pictures (Television) Limited/Yellow Bird 2015
"Wallander: The Final Season"
Sundays, May 8 – 22, 2016 at 9pm ET on PBS

(Check local listings)
 
          One of the world’s most remarkable actors brings a stirring detective series to an end as Kenneth Branagh (My Week with Marilyn, Henry V, Hamlet) plays his last season as Inspector Kurt Wallander, based on the novels of Henning Mankell, who died in 2015. MASTERPIECE Mystery! charts the final exploits of the brooding Swede in three nail-biting concluding episodes, on Wallander, The Final Season, airing Sundays, May 8 - 22, 2016 at 9pm ET on PBS.
 
         From Wallander’s first season on MASTERPIECE in 2009, the protagonist’s days have always seemed numbered. Dealing with northern Europe’s most violent and deranged criminals, Wallander also battles personal demons and appalling health habits, which led him to be diagnosed with diabetes. Now, as he starts to lose his memory, his greatest fear is that he is succumbing to the same disease that felled his father: Alzheimer’s. Branagh’s portrayal of this terrifying struggle is a heartbreaking performance.
 
         Branagh has previously won BAFTA’s Best Actor award for Wallander plus Emmy® and Golden Globe® nominations, also for best actor. The series’ uniform excellence was recognized with six additional BAFTAs, including Best Drama Series, Best Director, and Best Photography, as well as an Emmy® nomination for Best Miniseries. 

 

        Returning with Branagh in the Final Season are longtime ensemble members Jeany Spark (Da Vinci’s Demons) as Wallander’s daughter, Linda, now married and a mother, bringing a ray of light to her detective dad, who makes a very doting grandfather; and Richard McCabe (Indian Summers) as the gloomy but good-hearted forensic pathologist, Sven Nyberg.
 
        Introduced last season and back for this is Ingeborga Dapkunaite (Prime Suspect 6) as Baiba Liepa, a beautiful Latvian musician and police widow, who teamed up with Wallander in Riga to escape a death squad run by one her late husband’s colleagues. And MASTERPIECE’s Downton Abbey fans will recognize a new cast member, Harry Hadden-Paton (Edith’s gentleman friend in Season 6), who plays Linda’s workaholic husband, Hans.
 
        In The Final Season, Wallander keeps burning his candle at both ends, dodging knives, bullets, vicious dogs, homicidal motorcyclists, and a sense that he is losing his focus. Will mishap, medical leave, suspension, or a well-earned retirement be his final exit from this punishing profession? The poignant end game unfolds in these thrilling cases:
 
“The White Lioness”Sunday, May 8, 2016 at 9pm ET
In South Africa for a police conference, Wallander gets involved in the hunt for a missing Swedish woman and traces her last appearance to a clandestine shooting range, where someone has been practicing for a crime that will jolt the nation. Alarmingly, the South African sun or something else is leaving Wallander with blackouts and dizzy spells.

“A Lesson in Love” Sunday, May 15, 2016 at 9pm ET
A woman’s knife-slashed corpse leads Wallander on a chase for the victim’s missing daughter, inciting him to a grievous oversight. In private life, he bonds with Linda’s father-in-law, a retired naval officer, who gets a menacing birthday greeting. Convinced that something is not right with his brain, Wallander sees a doctor.

“The Troubled Man”Sunday, May 22, 2016 at 9pm ET
His memory is going to pieces and he’s no longer officially on duty, but Wallander draws on all his resources to find Linda’s missing father-in-law, a former top official in the Swedish navy, who is obsessed with a decades-old submarine mystery. Slowly losing his grip on reality, Wallander is desperate to solve this one last case.

 

 
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