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Detective Inspector Irene Suss

Release Year:         2011
Studio:         MHz Networks
Format:         Colour; widescreen; NTSC; in Swedish with English subtitles
Rated:         Not Rated
# of Discs/Episodes:         3 / 3 & 3 / 3
Running Time:         270 minutes & 270 minutes
DVD Release Date:         July 30, 2013
Screenwriters:         Stephan Ahnhem, Lars Bill Lundholm, Jonas Cornell, Charlotte Lesche
Directors:          Richard Holm, Emiliano Goessens, Alexander Moberg
Actors:          Angela Kovacs, Reuben Sallmander, Lars Brandeby
DVD Features:           SDH subtitles
E:Top Picks Rating:         9/10

MHz Networks Write-up:    
Angela Kovacs reprises her role in the second season of DETECTIVE INSPECTOR IRENE HUSS, the compelling Swedish TV crime series based on the best-selling crime fiction of Helene Turstsen. Irene Huss is a former European ju-jitsu champion, a mother of two teenage daughters and a Detective Inspector with the Violent Crimes Unit. Her husband, Krister, is a successful chef and restaurateur and luckily for Irene, he gladly shoulders a fair share of the household tasks. At the Violent Crimes Unit in Gothenburg, Irene encounters a wide range of criminal minds from international serial killers to psychotic young girls. Each new case brings its share of quirks and quandaries to the table, sometimes forcing the entire team to put their lives on the line.

Jon Ted Wynne Review:  
The one drawback to watching these fine crime dramas is that up until receiving them, I had no idea the series existed. As indicated above, these two box sets of three mysteries each comprise episodes 7 – 9 and 10 – 12 respectively in the adventures of Detective Inspector Irene Huss. It took a little while to get up to speed with Ms Huss and her family/professional life as I was lacking the benefit of episodes 1 – 6.

Nonetheless, I was soon hooked. Irene Huss is an excellent show and well deserves to be a hit in the North American market.

Irene is a former ju-jitsu champion, which means she can literally kick some serious butt. Ju-jitsu is a martial art originally developed by the Japanese and designed for close quarter fighting, enabling an unarmed practitioner of the art to best an armed or unarmed larger opponent. It’s a great idea to have Irene as a “ju-jitsu-ist” and it’s much more than a gimmick. Each episode sees Irene working out with her sensei (or teacher) and serves as a metaphor for her working out the solution to whatever crime she is working on. It also acts as a great way for her to release her stress, which may help account for her unusually stable home life.

This is just one way that makes DETECTIVE INSPECTOR IRENE HUSS stand out as a great addition to the police procedural genre.

Each of Irene’s crime solving team is distinct and well-defined, as are the members of her domestic life, including Sammie the dog.

Surprisingly, Irene is no superwoman. She takes a lot of physical abuse in the course of her duties. Were she to simply overpower everyone because of her martial prowess the show would quickly become predictable, but to the show’s credit, she has some very close calls.

Angela Kovacs is great as Irene. Still attractive, but far less concerned about her lipstick than about catching the bad guys, she is utterly believable as the dedicated professional and the woman committed to her family. It is the family ties that help make some of the episodes particularly powerful.

“The Hidden Watcher” starts things off with, yes, another serial killer, but Irene happens to fall into the category of women the killer prefers for his victims. A particularly messy showdown concludes this fine episode and establishes Irene Huss for those of you who, like me, haven’t yet seen the first six episodes in the series.

“The Treacherous Net” is an effective take on the world-wide problem of internet chat rooms being used by people to lure (usually underage) victims.

“The Man with the Small Face” involves a startling revelation for one of Huss’ superiors, a reminder that part of the success of the series is its ensemble acting and fully rounded supporting roles.

In the second box set, “Ring of Silence” starts things off in what proves to be a very intense episode involving one of Irene’s daughters enduring great peril.

“Protected by Shadows” sees a vicious motorcycle gang and how their ruthless behaviour weaves its way into Irene’s personal as well as professional life.

“The Hunted Witness” rounds things off with a tale of adultery and revenge.

Spend some time with Detective Inspector Irene Huss. You’ll find it very arresting!

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