Wallander vs Hutch
In 1975 I was 17 years old it was the year The Boss Delivered Born to Run deep into my soul. TV screen heros came and went with regularity. There were enough detectives on TV to cure all crime. But who was my hero? For instance I never wanted to be Ironside (can you blame me) only flirted with smelly Colombo,(not literally) Kojak was too old like a dodgy uncle but Starsky and Hutch well they were the people to be in the late 70s.
This united pair burst onto the sunny California scean in a Ford Gran Torinos "Bright Red" (paint code 2B). In Aston where I lived there were no hills, no beachs no Bright Red Torinos, but I did have my Austin A40. They ran, jumped into the car without using the doors slid of the roof lounged on the bonnet (hood) and pulled guns and people out of the boot. In my distant days of youth, the days before varifocols and flatulence Starsky and Hutch inspired Friday night drives in my A40 with The Boss on the cassette player. I looked so cool trying to enter my A40 through the window trying to spin the wheels and stalling. Their car had an enviable sound (dubbed probably) from a V8, no worries about pollution and tax bands. These detectives had energy and life to the full and an uplifting soundtrack. For me the hero was Starsky with highly fashionable cardy and trainers always trainers so I always had trainers.
2012 Now the soundtrack to my life is Richard Hawley and the detective is Wallander, Kurt is middle-aged. He looks as if he is dressed from anywhere nowhere not even M&S. He is at times a lonely figure in the workplace. No pre-liposuction beach babes at the end of the day for him. Sweden maybe beautiful but it is not California, the low gentle lighting and lack of hills and half-light homes frame him compress him. Kurts car is an attractive dull Caspian Blue (metallic) Volvo XC70 with a 5 cylinder diesel for efficiency and care for the environment. I have not once seen him jump through the open window of the driver’s door. Is Kurt disappointing? No.
For kurt’ isolation focus him, his angst clouds his vision to the possibility of joy. His hope is in the dull methodical casework were he craves for an opening. His language visual, to the blind he would be silent. For me he is the hero of today working against all odds, his reward only in the positive conclusion of the case. He is my Jeremiah. His borderline depression is ok if not almost desirable. He is not newwine or oldwine he is anywine at the end of the day. (as long as it’s redwine) he seems broken yet functioning not triumphant but determined committed reflective. His fear of the gun and death give us who at times are unsure how to live life to the full a man to follow. For the men who find it difficult to be the pumped up hero of the V8 torino Kurt offers a new Jeremiah.