My first encounter with Beck, the Swedish TV detective, involved a rather preposterous storyline suggesting a detective single-handedly fought off a gang of tooled-up bikers.
Loving Scandinavian drama for its realism, I felt a little bit let down by the show, based on the popular books penned by Swedish husband-and-wife writers Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö.
Beck the series - volume two lives up to the usual Swedish high standards, however, as Martin Beck, played by Peter Haber (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo) embarks on four new cases.
Included is the body of an investigative journalist found along with evidence in his flat of a notorious criminal debt collector.
There’s another body discovered in a trailer after a fire and the death of an ex-policeman to investigate.
The feature length episodes include a farewell to Gunvald Larsson and a welcome to Martin’s new and interesting side-kick Steinar Hovland (Kristofer Hivju – Game of Thrones and Force Majeure), a Norwegian homicide investigator brought in over Beck’s head.
Alongside the gritty and involved police investigations run the private lives of the detectives, including some revelations from Beck’s colourful neighbour to lighten the tone.
It’s an absorbing combination and enough to keep us waiting for the next series.
Beck – The Series Volume 2 (15) is out on DVD on Monday, October 10