The main protagonist, Erik has been living in the city Stockholm for a long time, but after a traumatizing experience with a robber who shot him, Erik decides to move to his childhood home, a small town in Norrland where everyone knows everyone, mainly because he wants to relax from the traumatic event that happened in Stockholm. However, things don't go as planned.
- Abusive Parents: Erik and Leif's father was a monster to say the least, and the main reason why Leif is the way he is. Erik left Leif after a while, which may be the reason why he never became like Leif.
- Adult Fear: In the sequel, Erik learns that Torsten is abusing Leif's previously unknown son Peter, which makes Erik worried that Peter might go the same path as Leif.
- Berserk Button: As the above states, both of the films imply that Erik never tolerates child abuse, which is most likely due to his own experiences.
- Big Brother Instinct: He constantly tries stopping Leif from going to far - which doesn't work. At the end, when Leif has killed Ove, Erik tells him to arrest himself, and he might get a lower prison sentence, the cry and hug each other, ...and then Leif burns down the entire house.
- Butt-Monkey: Implied to have been one in his Stockholm days, but arguably even more so in the current state, being thrown around and abused by people he wants to care about.
- Cain and Abel: Leif, while killing his own dog is bad, totally becomes this to Erik when he starts raping an innocent woman and killing their mentally challenged brother Ove.
- Cool Car: He has multiple ones.
- Dark and Troubled Past: See Abusive Parents.
- Defective Detective: Downplayed. While his life isn't as bad as most others on the trope, Erik is hated by the entire town for "destroying the town" by looking deeper into the illegal hunting going on. In the sequel, Erik almost totally loses this trope, as he is more like a regular family man than anything.
- Fatal Flaw: In the sequel, when Erik is in Torsten's basement to prove that he is behind the murders, he takes no pictures of the evidence and instead just leaves the place and tells his colleagues about it. At the time they are back, all of the proof is gone.
- Hero with Bad Publicity: While he's regarded as a bit of a hero in Stockholm, once he arrives in Norrland and tries stopping the titular hunters, everyone hates him and thinks that he is causing unnecessary drama in an otherwise calm town.
- Nice Guy: Overall.
- One-Man Army: He almost manages to knock down all nine or so of the hunters in a fight.
- Only Sane Employee: Played with, while he does have good employees, alot of his associates are still Dirty Cop's who try covering up different crimes.
- Sanity Slippage: Near the end of the first film, Erik becomes desperate to arrest the hunters, and starts being cruel to pretty much everyone who doesn't help him.
A prosecutor who is probably the only one who has the same view as Erik on the illegal hunting case, the secondary protagonist of the first film.
- Only Sane Employee: As mentioned before, everyone in the police seem fairly normal and kindhearted, it's just that Erik and her are the only ones there who seem to care.
Erik's new colleague in the sequel who helps Erik and the police force into finding the person who is behind a specific murder, suspicions go to the Finnish gangster Jari, who Torsten had previously been involved in arresting. However, Torsten seems to be hiding facts about the murder, and it seems like he wants to cover it up, someone he cares about has done the murder.
- Abusive Parents: He is quite abusive to his foster son Peter.
- Alas, Poor Villain: After a long battle between the family at the bay, Torsten finally understands his wrongdoings, and calms down for a second. He drops his aggressive tone, and the only thing he can say before committing suicide is "take care of the guy...". What makes this especially sad is the fact that he genuinely seems to believe that his so called family genuinely is a good family, and that his abuse is necessary for the family. He starts crying just before his death, and it shows that he may not be as evil as everyone thinks he is.
- Ax-Crazy: Behind the rather sophisticated facade that he has, is a complete maniac who only cares about himself and thinks that violence is the answer to everything.
- Big Bad: After framing and killing Jari for a murder he did himself, abusing his wife, emotionally manipulating, abusing, and making his own son turn against Erik, it is fair to say that he is the opposite to Erik.
- Contrasting Sequel Antagonist: Played with. He's actually quite similar to Leif from the previous film, but there is one thing that is different between them: Leif kills himself by killing himself, but also burning down the family legacy house that every member of the family has lived in, thus dying in disgrace. Torsten, on the other hand, committs suicide after he realizes that what he has been doing has been wrong all along, and thus dying in honor.
- Dirty Cop: He uses his status as one in order to abuse Peter. Him being the true killer is just a bonus.
- The Corrupter: He tries making Peter turn against Erik, who Peter has obtained a pretty good relationship with. However, he genuinely seems to believe that what he is doing is right, different from most examples.
- For the Evulz: Technically, his reasoning on killing Elin doesn't have much logic in it, even more so when he kills Jari.
- Frame-Up: He frames Jari for killing Elin, when in reality he is the murderer himself.
- Obviously Evil: If you didn't guess that he was the murderer within a minute of screentime, either you haven't watched many Peter Stormare films, or you're simply stupid.
- Pet the Dog Despite abusing his family, he has a literal scene where he is with his dog, and he talks with the dog as if it is a human, and, of course, pets it.
- Walking Spoiler: The only thing worth talking about when it comes to his character is when he is revealed as the murderer.
Erik's boss in the first film, and one of the few truly neutral characters in the films.
- Anti-Hero: He may not be the fastest at catching criminals, so much so that he is borderline-corrupt, but it is not intentional, and it is moreso because of Erik's sudden decisions and methods of catching criminals, which are quite unheart of in a small town without rules.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: It is never really explained why he doesn't appear in the sequel.
The most corrupt member of the police, he is one of the biggest reasons why the hunters haven't been caught yet, as he knows them and protects them.
- Affably Evil: He never changes his cheerful personality even when he's discovered.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: He genuinely cares for his family.
- Expy: His actor has played around three characters who are similar to Bengtsson, one is worse than the other.
- Karma Houdini: He gets expelled for his involvement, but he is never directly punished for protecting murderers and rapists.
- Establishing Character Moment: They are introduced cruelly killing a bunch of deers.
- Get Out!: After killing Ove, the local bartender makes it very, very clear to them they are no longer welcome in his establishment.
- For the Evulz: Their actions are pretty much all for fun.
- Greed: Aside from being murderers and rapists, they are also illegal hunters who get lots of money from killing innocent animals.
- Hate Sink: All of them are extremely unsympathetic, and when the most sympathetic member of the group is a Dirty Coward, that is saying something.
- 0% Approval Rating: After sadistically murdering Ove, they go from merely disliked to outright pariahs in the local community.
Erik's own brother, who may at first come across as a Nice Guy, but isn't exactly that.
- Abusive Parents: Much like Erik, he was abused by their monstrous dad, which is most likely why Leif is so hateful.
- Asshole Victim: Despite his tragic backround, his fate is ultimately not tragic after everything he has done, and it's a satisfying and ultimate ending.
- Ax-Crazy: Behind that facade of a hilarious guy who would perfectly fit the bill as a family man, is an evil, evil man who terrorizes people for little to no reason.
- Big Bad: Of the first film, as he's the leader of the hunters.
- Driven to Suicide: He blows himself and the family legacy house up.
- Faux Affably Evil: He does have a pretty good sense of humor, and he seems to genuinely have fun talking with Erik, which is just a big front so that he can later get away with everything.
- Freudian Excuse: His actions are without a doubt taken from that of his father's, and it is fully possible that him shooting his own dog is taken from his dad possibly doing the same thing to him. Which doesn't necessarily justify his final actions, but it does give an interesting look at his character.
- Hate Sink: When he kills Ove, he has officially gone to far.
- Kick the Dog: Pretty much what his character consists of.
- He fatally shoots his own dog Zorro simply because it didn't follow his orders once.
- It was definitely an accident when Tomme killed the berry picker, but when the berry picker's wife sees the murder, Leif chases her and sadistically kills her. Now, that is NOT an accident.
- He rapes a Philippine immigrant for fun, which causes her to disappear from the country purely out of fear.
- And finally, what truly makes him the biggest Hate Sink of the films, he takes the kind, mentally challenged Ove, asks him if he wants to hunt with them for real, he answers yes, he gets the rifle, he goes to a mountain to hunt, and then when he looks back, the gang is gone. He looks back a second time, and they are all standing there armed, ready to kill him. He grabs his rifle, tries shooting, only to discover that the ammo was fake, and that they were planning on killing him all along. Leif sadistically shoots and kills him, and nearly gets away with it.
- Politically Incorrect Villain: His xenophobic rant on the Phillipine immigrant Nena, calling her a baboon and everything, tells it all.
- Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: He and his gang kidnap Nena, an innocent immigrant and he orders his mooks to rape her.
- Redemption Rejection: Instead of accepting arrest he puts himself and his house on fire.
The secondary antagonist of the film, he is a hateable member of the gang.
- The Dragon: From what is seen, he can probably be called the right-hand of Leif.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Despite being a rapist, murderer, and overall hateable guy, he still does care for his wife and children, and starts crying when he realizes that their family might be split apart if it's revealed that he is a murderer.
- Hate Sink: Probably the biggest one of the group, due to Leif at the very least being Evil Is Cool to some people.
- Smug Snake: He has an almost permanent smug smile on him, even when he's being insulted. Which isn't a good thing, just makes him even more hateable.
The most cowardly member of the gang.
The mentally challenged brother of Erik and Leif, who loves animals.
- Adorkable: He behaves quite childishly, but is probably the nicest person in the entire film. He loves animals, never does anything remotely selfish, and is always kind.
- Kindhearted Simpleton: He can barely speak, has a hobby in building wooden guns and playing with it like a toy, and loves animals. When Leif gets ready to kill him, if you don't get close to crying, you must be emotionless.
- Nice Guy: Read above.