Monday, March 24, 2014

Borgen - Review

If you are missing The West Wing, or you are  a fan of House of Cards and looking for a new TV show to watch I recommend that you give the Danish TV Series “Borgen” a go.

Borgen translates to "Castle" and the show centres on Birgitte Nyborg, who becomes Denmark’s first female Prime Minister, her minority government, and the impact her political life has on her family life.

The most striking thing in the first season was how the show highlighted the personal cost of power. During the course of season one the relationship with her husband and children spirals downwards. One of her Minsters makes the point of how many marriages of MPs fail and while they are experts at negotiating with the crossbenches to ensure the survival of their government, they are unable to utilise the same communication skills and negotiate with their partners. The show highlights this as Nyborg loses the art of intimate conversation with her husband.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the issues the Danish parliament is dealing with, are not too dissimilar to ours – immigration, the relationship with the US, quotas, surveillance, cynicism & idealism. I found the episode touching on Greenland to be particularly sad.

Equally interesting is how the show portrays differing perspectives on breaking and reporting stories in in a television station.  I am intrigued to see how this is developed through the second season.

Further reading; here's a piece from The Guardian talking about the show & Australia's former PM Gillard.

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