Roll up, form an orderly queue and get ready to visit every location from SBS On Demand’s current impressive slate of delectable international programming.
Greetings, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the Magical Mystery World Drama bus tour. Photography is permitted, but please keep your arms inside the vehicle at all times, as we wouldn’t want another crime scene on our hands, hehe.
Bit of bus-tour humour there. Don’t worry, barely anyone has died on this journey.
Tucked away on the eastern coastline in the Eastern Region of Iceland, this tiny port town is the setting for the fantastic locked-location thriller Trapped. Look over to your right, and that section of Seyðisfjörður Portside is where a mysterious torso washed ashore.
Following closely behind that torso is that massive cruise liner where Andri Olafsson (Ólafur Darri Ólafsson), the chief of police, assumes a murder took place - but when the storm of the century hits, he has no choice but to empty the ship’s population onto his turf.
The fourth largest city in Sweden, Upsalla also happens to be where a young boy is found murdered, bringing criminal psychologist/author Inger Johanne Vik (Melinda Kinnaman) into the fold.
Not only do a series of similar killings occur throughout Sweden (including Stockholm), but Vik’s autistic daughter witnessed one of the murders and now holds vital information about the serial killer – a man who seems to be working for a much larger, sinister, fundamentalist organisation.
Of course, as 1864 is Denmark’s most expensive TV drama to date, and covers the years leading up to the Second Schleswig War, we’re sprawled all over the region as the story progresses.
But over to your left is Schleswig, one of the primary battlegrounds in Denmark’s War, and a pivotal point in the shaping of modern Denmark.
University of Antwerp, Antwerpen, Belgium (Professor T)
Those familiar - or a little bit in love - with the undeniably brilliant, yet frustratingly difficult professor of criminology, Jasper Teerlinck (Koen De Bouw) should keep their eyes peeled for Antwerp Uni’s Campus Drie Eiken. That’s where Belgium’s answer to Gregory House M.D. teaches students while simultaneously solving crimes.
We might catch a glimpse of Professor T himself, so get those cameras ready, but don’t wave or say hi – there’s absolutely no chance of a response.
Professor T is coming soon to SBS On Demand.
Yes, this bus was built by Dr Emmet Brown, so time is far more malleable. Don’t worry, we don’t need a lightning storm to get us home, so let’s marvel at how f’d up Paris has become. The once-great city is now cut by a towering wall.
We’re lucky enough to be on the side of the employed. Kind of like Emerald City meets The Hunger Games, right? All very slick and clean, and everyone is so happy to have a job.
This tour doesn’t venture to the other side of Paris, as the squalor and violence of the unemployed is just a wee bit too dangerous.
The country village of Versailles, France (Versailles)
Now, we go nearly 500 years into the past to the village where Louis XIV (George Blagden) would machinate and tantrum his way to leader of France.
Over there, is the ridiculously large hunting lodge that little Louis chose to turn into what’s now known as the Palace of Versailles, and this very spot is now a part of a wealthy Parisian suburb.
Of course, we all know the process of creating the Kingdom of Versailles required Games of Thrones levels of insanity, except this insanity comes straight out of the history books.
Oh, sorry, didn’t I mention this tour runs through the capital of Afghanistan? If you check your brochures, it’s all there in the fine print.
Possible legal issues aside, over to your right is the actual Kaboul Kitchen, the infamous bar run by French ex-pat Jacky (Gilbert Melki), where one would go to break a series of Muslim laws, such as snogging the same sex, dancing around half-naked and consuming barrels of alcohol.
As the Kitchen ran during the war, you can imagine it wasn’t the easiest place to keep open.
No need to freak out. Yes, we’re currently in Castlerock, which is where The Secret’s true story is set, but this bus turns into a Batmobile, so we’re all safe.
This tiny town in Northern Ireland boasts a considerable Baptist quotient, and it’s within that religious community that James Nesbitt and Genevieve O’Reilly conduct an illicit affair, and then consider murdering their respective partners instead of public repentance.
Don’t worry, we’re about to leave.
Tucked away in the top left corner of West Midlands county is the small metropolis of Wolverhampton – home to your new favourite unconventional family, the Garrys of Raised By Wolves.
Just behind us is the Garry household, a small government-funded house jam-packed with memorable characters. That’s where Della (Rebekah Staton), the bas-ass mother; Germaine (Helen Monks), the gullible motor-mouth daughter and Aretha (Alexa Davies), her bookish, mischievous sister deliver creator Caitlin Moran’s signature style of comedy.
That brings us to the end of our tour - please vacate the bus immediately as I’m busting to use the toilet. Oh, and don’t forget to head over to SBS On Demand to actually watch the shows themselves. Cheerio!