Thursday, July 25, 2013

Anno 1790 - A different year!

Last Wednesday, I was surfing the channels looking for something good to watch. It was 10pm, and there was really nothing to be found, but by chance I happened on what looked like a drama set back in the 18th Century. Ahh! I was right, and it looked interesting, though there were subtitles to read...not so easy when it’s a truly unfamiliar language and it’s late night tv!

But, I decided to give it some time, and I was glad I did. The show was Anno 1790, a Swedish historic crime drama. Set in Stockholm, it centers around a former army doctor from the Russo-Swedish War of 1788-1790. He is now a criminal inspector, inspired by the French Revolution and its new ideas. He is a supporter of Voltaire’s free thinking. He is in love with his superior’s wife, and he has an assistant who is his antitheist. Makes for some interesting dynamics.

A couple scenes were quite interesting. The first included someone utilizing magnetism along with hypnotism and the occult, an Italian named Cagliostro, who is an actual historic figure shrouded in mystery. The other was the medical treatment of a person stabbed, injured by the villian. Not a pretty picture but the techniques were brutal, but obviously effective. We have come a long way.

Last night, I found it again, and watched. This time, some religious intrigue. I find that some of these European dramas focus more on a story, less action, more dialogue. Slower paced, but infinitely more satisfying.  Look for it!

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