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The DNA of a Scandi noir

The DNA of a Scandi noir

As an English adaptation of Danish series Those Who Kill comes to FOX, we investigate the formula for this popular genre

By Laura Rutkowski, Staff Writer

Does it tick the isolated location/freezing temperature box? Is there a new, young detective that the older detective doesn't want on the team? Perhaps there’s an undercurrent of sexual tension between members of the police, who probably hated each other to begin with? Yep, you’re more than likely watching a Scandi noir.

If you’d like another one to add to the list, which is full of twists, turns and tropes, try Those Who Kill. This English-language thriller is based on a Danish series, which in turn was based on the novels by Elsebeth Egholm.


Chloë Sevigny as Catherine Jenson in Those Who Kill on FOX

Catherine Jenson (Chloë Sevigny) is on the case

Catherine Jenson (Chloë Sevigny, We Are Who We Are), a recently promoted homicide detective, enlists the help of college professor Dr Thomas Schaeffer (James D'Arcy, Broadchurch) to hunt down a serial killer. The criminal eludes the police and a young girl is kidnapped in this race against the clock. Jenson’s ability to focus on the case at hand becomes clouded as she learns more about the truth behind her brother’s disappearance.


So far, so Scandi! But what truly makes a Scandi noir? Comedian Alasdair Beckett-King created a short video that went viral called “Every Single Scandinavian Crime Drama.”


He’s not wrong! To expand on his analysis, simply click the symbols on our graphic below to delve deeper into this genre’s DNA (Danish, Norwegian… Almost works).


When is FOX’s Those Who Kill on TV?

Those Who Kill airs on FOX/HD (CH 157/199) on Thursdays at 10pm, with the first episode screening on February 4th. It is also available for 30 days in Catch Up > Channels > FOX.


The ten-part series will subsequently air every week until Thursday 8 April.

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Catch Up TV: Catch Up TV content available for up to 7 days or up to 30 days after broadcast, depending on content.

Image credits: Those Who Kill © Fox Television 2020

The Bridge ©  Filmlance International AB / Carolina Romare

Twin © Nordisk Film Production AS / Eirik Evjen

Valhalla Murders © TRUENORTH