Drama series “The Pass” with mystery elements: abysses in the Alps – media – society



Few other television series have recently made such a deep impression as the Sky Original series “Der Pass” starring Julia Jentsch and Nicholas Ofczarek – and not just because of the deep chasms in the Alpine valleys between Germany and Austria. With its highly dramatic search for a serial killer in front of the gigantic mountain backdrop with its legends and myths, the first season even went far beyond the model of the much-noticed Danish-Swedish two-country series “The Bridge – Transit to Death”.

No wonder that “Der Pass” was overwhelmed with awards, starting with the Golden Camera and Romy, the German TV Award and four Grimme Awards. “Der Pass” was also an international hit: license rights were sold in over 60 countries. The sequel, which is long awaited by genre fans, starts on Friday. To say it in advance: Unlike the US series “True Detective”, with which “The Passport” is compared, the continuation of the first season is in no way inferior.

The second season makes no secret of some central questions: After the bodies of young women are repeatedly found in the mountainous border region between the Berchtesgadener Land and Salzburg, the security authorities quickly realize that they are dealing with a serial offender who is increasingly acts more brutally and unscrupulously. The identity of the man is also revealed quickly. The main question is not who is responsible for the series of murders, but whether and how the joint German-Austrian investigation team will be able to find and stop him.

[„Der Pass“, Staffel zwei mit acht Episoden, ab Freitag mit Doppelfolgen bei Sky]

The German commissioner Ellie Stocker (Julia Jentsch) and her Austrian colleague Gedeon Winter (Nicholas Ofczarek) are initially only conditionally or not at all operational. Stocker is still traumatized by the aftermath of the Krampuskiller case, which she survived by a hair’s breadth, despite a longer break.

Things are even worse for the elemental “Kieberer” from Austria, who barely survived an assassination attempt by organized crime and only slowly awakens from his coma at the beginning of the new case. The ambitious and witty young inspector Yela Antic (Franziska von Harsdorf) is assigned to the investigations in Austria as the liaison police officer. Other outstanding actors include Andreas Lust as head of the investigative team, the two Austrians Dominic Marcus Singer and Christoph Luser as heirs to the Gössen building dynasty.

continuity in production

Sky relied on the greatest possible continuity for the production of the series: Wiedemann & Berg was again engaged as the production company, Dieter and Jakob Pochlatko from epo-film are on board as co-producers. Showrunners Cyrill Boss and Philipp Stennert are once again responsible for the idea, script and direction. And this time, Philip Peschlow captured the equally fantastic and depressing images.

Hollywood legend Hans Zimmer was brought in for the music. With his arrangements, the tension on the soundtrack hardly gives the audience a break for breath. The mood alternates between the approaching thunderstorms of the brass and the frightening whine of the strings.

While the shooting of season one had to contend with masses of snow, the sequel was dominated by rather cloudy winter weather. On the one hand, this underlines the dark and oppressive mood of the series, but in order to bring a real winter atmosphere to the set at least in some places, snow was carted in from a winter sports area and distributed with wind machines, as in the scenes in the Gössens’ castle.

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Meanwhile, the psychology of the deranged serial killer is combined with the mystical legend of the poacher from the Watzmann and the critique of a society in which some believe they are above the law. At the same time, it is a story of irrepressible urges, not only on the part of the perpetrator. Because at the end of the day, Ellie Stocker, Gedeon Winter, Yela Antic and group leader Manuel Riffeser are also among the driven.

And the viewers can’t get away from it either. The plot is so cleverly interwoven that it is difficult not to inhale the eight 50-minute episodes in one go. This is ensured not only by the skilful play with the cliffhangers, but also by a narrative that operates with omissions and thus prompts the audience to combine them – and thus only binds them more firmly. That’s not the only reason why a third season seems more than likely.


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