Why Swedes love Saga Norén
Posted on februari 2, 2018
The Swedish crime series ”Bron” (The Bridge, SVT.se) has made success on Swedish television. The story about two unhappy souls, criminal investigator Saga Norén at Swedish police and her Danish colleague Henrik is partly realistic, partly a dark fairy tale. Most of all, it is a story about Saga: the victim of a dysfunctional family with more problems than you could possibly imagine. Saga herself has a psychiatric diagnosis, she is probably suffering from Aspergers syndrome or autism. The character is very well portrayed by Sofia Helin.
Swedes love Saga. I love her, too. But why do we like her so much? I think my journalist colleague Ellinor got it right when she said: it is because Saga is so direct. She is unmasked. She is like a child, but a clever child.
In a time like ours, with people desperately trying to look facebook-happy and we all do our best to fulfil the idea of “living our dream” – then Saga is a liberator. She doesn´t pretend to be anything else but what she is. If she is scared, she tells everybody she is scared. But most of the time, she is not scared, because if you don´t pretend, there´s nothing to be afraid of.
What she seems to be saying is: let´s face things, say what they are, and what we are. It all sounds easy putting it that way. But of course, her attitude gets her into trouble: life simply doesn´t work that way.
And then, we all suffer. We might think from time to time: why can´t she change? On Facebook somebody wrote after last episode Sunday (Fourth and last season): “Saga, how could you act like this?”
But the thing is, could it be that it is not Saga who is in the wrong? I think it is this question, a question that sort of lingers after each episode, that both disturb us and that makes us long for the next episode. “Bron” isn´t ordinary easy-to-forget-entertainment, it is something more. And that´s why we love it.