YMMV / Wallander

  • Alas, Poor Villain: Fredrik from the military's death in The Revenge is very sad. While he's a terrorist who has murdered many people, he looks so broken and sad after all of the shit he has been forced into going through that it's almost impossible not to feel sad when he realizes that he is going to have to be put in prison, which leads him into commiting suicide. Even Wallander looks extremely saddened by it.
  • Complete Monster:
    • Film Series: Rolf Liljeberg, from "The Secret", at first seems like a really nice guy who is enjoying his retirement after a long career as a police officer. He helps the protagonists find the man who killed a boy named Johannes, the suspect being one of Rolf's friends Magnus. He manages to keep a really good fašade, but his true colors are shown when Stefan remembers how he was heavily abused by Rolf as a child, and a flashback scene is shown where Stefan is running away from Rolf and gets his scar. Stefan goes home to Rolf, and constantly points his gun against Rolf and is willing to shoot him. Rolf laughs and wants Stefan to kill him, since he'll never get away with it. He also states that no one else has successfully tried getting away with similar things previously either. A picture can be seen of a young Stefan naked in Rolf's house. All of this is too much for Stefan to handle, so he commits suicide. It is also now revealed that Rolf is behind the murder of Johannes as well. In his last scene, he kills one of his friends for revealing to much information to the police and tries killing her child as well, but fails. Even in a series like Wallander, where all of the main antagonists have murdered at the very least one person, Rolf stands out as one of the few, if not the only, pedophile in the series.
    • Swedish TV Series: Heinrich Böhle, from "The Pyramid", is a criminal mastermind who is seeking to destroy drug dealer Yngve Holm's entire life after a drug deal gone wrong. Introduced during a flashback scene during Wallander's early police career, a gunshot can be heard inside an old man's house while Wallander is having a fun time with one of his best friends outside. Wallander hears this, and sees Böhle, who manages to escape the scene, killing Wallander's friend in the process. 25 years later, Böhle meets Wallander again, but is even more sadistic and evil this time around. After one of Yngve Holm's drug dealers accidentally causes an overdose, Böhle, scared that he might get caught by the police, targets Holm's family and friends. He starts out by kidnapping Yngve's sister, and taping her around a chair, he puts a heart rate monitor on her, so that if she tries escaping her heart rate will go up, and a bomb will explode, blowing up the entire house. Her sister comes and tries saving her, but the house blows up, killing them both. Böhle then meets with Yngve's right-hand Frank, and kills him as well. To complete his killing spree, he kidnaps Yngve's daughter who he puts a bomb on. He puts a heart rate monitor on himself this time so that if his heart rate goes below 50 or over 90, the bomb will explode. Despite murder being a very common aspect in the Wallander series, Böhle stands out as a psychopath who only wanted to destroy and kill for his own benefit.
  • Crowning Moment of Awesome:
    • In Firewall Wallander saves the world from a massive and destructive cyber-terrorism attack.
    • In The Dogs of Riga he illegally sneaks into Latvia, breaks into the archives at police headquarters in Riga and steals a file that a murdered officer had compiled, so that the massive corruption in the Latvian police force can be exposed and the murderer can get his comeuppance. He does all this despite thinking of himself as a coward and having little help apart from a small group of people who were connected with the murdered policeman.
    • In The Revenge, the first film in season two of the Henriksson Wallander films, Wallander very coolly rescues a government minister who was handcuffed to the murderer, taking her place instead.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Wallander's daughter, Linda, is described as having survived two suicide attempts as a teenager. In Real Life Johanna Sällström who played Linda in the first season of the Henriksson Wallander films committed suicide in 2007. Mankell was so upset that he shelved plans for a trilogy of books about Linda. This is also why she doesn't appear in the second season, as he didn't want to replace her with another actress.
    • What makes it worse is that in the final episode she appeared in Linda's colleague and erstwhile boyfriend Stefan commits suicide.
  • Magnificent Bastard:
    • Lothar Kraftczyk in Mastermind. He pretends to work with many different things all while manipulating and secretely watching every policeman with a daughter in order to torture them because of his own loss.
    • James Carter in Firewall is definitely this. He plans on improving the African economy by causing as much chaos as possible and destroying the economy in the western world. He uses Sonja's death as a way of distracting everyone from what else is happening.
  • Narrowed It Down to the Guy I Recognize: The television series, both Swedish and English, feature this on occasion. Most recently, 'The Man Who Smiled', if you're watching along Stateside, features Rupert Graves as Harderberg.
  • Retroactive Recognition: Tom Hiddleston played Magnus Martinsson in the first two British series before rocketing to international superstardom as Loki in Thor.
  • The Woobie:
    • Wallander, definitely. See the Defective Detective example. The Branagh version takes this aspect Up to 11- even Branagh has said he wants to buy the guy a beer and tell him everything will be okay. His career has taken over him so much that even in his 70's, he would rather commit suicide than end his career.
    • In the Henriksson films, Pontus would probably qualify for this. He gets shot, beaten up, takes flack from his father for becoming a policeman instead of a lawyer, frequently gets chewed out by Wallander and does it all with a look of bemusement on his face.
    • Sonja from Firewall. She was raped when she was younger, her mom is dead, she is in trouble with the law due to killing the same guy who raped her previously, she is doing terrible in school due to insecurities despite being a top student in previous classes, and last of all, she gets burned to her death and is used as a distraction for a cyber-attack.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/Wallander