I really cannot stress how much I have been enjoying this series.
set in Lillehammer, the northern city in Norway which was host to the 1994 Winter games, its about a Chicago gangster forced to hide out in Norway as part of his relocation process.
just as desperate Housewives uincovered the dark underbelly of the rich suburban elite, lily hammer suggests that even a country as socially democratic and egalitarian as Norway may not be quite as fair as we could imagine, so much so that the gangster is made almost noble by his dealings by the very people who should be above corruption and protectionism. For instance, in the first episode Johnny uncovers compromising photos of the social worker who has been assigned to help him assimilate in the country.
time and again the gangster is made to appear an unlikely hero in the face of nitpicking bureaucracy and pointless regulations. So when he goes to buy a pram which is the most expensive and best in the shop, we know that we can’t trust the seller, indeed only moments later we watch him attempt and fail to collapse the pram and destroy it, and we know that the store will try not to accept any responsibility.
Last episode we saw was when the rival gangsters from New York had got hold of his whereabouts. this was another skillful demonstration of who the real bad guys are. Not Giovanni Henriksen, new in town and already a local hero and expectant father of twins, but the heartless and cold-blooded murderers who on their first day savagely assualt a gas station attendant.
The season has two episodes yet to air. Let us hope there are more to follow.