By Will Barber Taylor
When three prostitutes are murdered by being shot through the left eye in Antwerp, Berlin and Copenhagen, Europol sets up a Joint Investigation Team under the lead of Harald Bjon (Lars Mikkelsen) from Denmark, Jackie Mueller (Jasmin Gerat) from Germany and Alicia Verbeek (Verlee Baetens) from Belgium. During their investigation, The Team unravels an unscrupulous criminal organisation operating across Europe.
The Team is a drama of epic proportions; set across Europe it deftly portrays a race against time to uncover the reason behind the mysterious and horrific deaths of three prostitutes in three of Europe’s most magnificent cities. Mixing dramatic landscapes with a dark and gritty tone, The Team is unlike previous series that have covered murders across borders. The US series Crossing Lines had a similar premise to The Team, however whilst Crossing Lines is filled with slick set pieces it does come off as corny and somewhat insincere about its presentation of inter European detection. The Team, on the other hand, depicts a far more realistic vision of Europol’s detective unit.
Lars Mikkelsen is particularly compelling as Harald. He has a certain presence about him and whenever he enters a crime scene, his determination to find the killer is apparent. His minute expressions display how he is thinking is the same way as the dialogue does. Mikkelsen’s detailed and nuanced performance is at the centre of the series and his sparky relationship with Jackie Mueller (Jasmin Gerat) and Alicia Verbeek (Verlee Baetens) helps to build the suspense that engulfs the series.
The cinematography is beautiful with some of Europe’s most beautiful cities stunningly filmed. Antwerp is beautifully lit and filmed and serves as the perfect background to discovery of one of the bodies.
The Team is a great new addition to the pantheon of European dramas released in recent decades. Fresh, innovative and examining a troubling truth about organised crime in Europe, The Team will have you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end.
With thanks to Nordic Noir and Beyond. You can buy The Team on DVD from Nordic Noir here.