Powerful flashes of light occur in the oceans and bewildered migrants from three periods in the past – the Stone Age, the Viking era and the late 1800s – suddenly appear in the water. Scientists can’t figure out what’s happening, and the ‘beforeigners’ have no memory of how they got here (or is that ‘now’?) either.
A police drama with a dash of sci-fi, Beforeigners sees a burned out Oslo police office paired with a new recruit, originally from the Viking era, to investigate a murder.
It’s not quite as breakneck as that trailer suggests, but with folk from four time periods and more than one murder to solve, there’s plenty going on. Here’s a guide to who’s who.
Lars Haaland (Nicolai Cleve Broch)
A burned out police officer, Haaland has been on sick leave but he returns to active duty when the Oslo police face a new case, the murder of a woman covered in Stone Age tattoos.
Alfhildr Enginsdottir (Krista Kosonen)
Alfhildr, who comes from the Viking era, is a new recruit to the Oslo police force, part of the police department’s integration program for people of multi-temporal backgrounds. Her first day sees her paired with Haaland as the media jumps on the story of the woman’s murder. It could look like a token effort, but Alfhildr, a former shieldmaiden, brings some unexpected skills to the hunt for the killer.
Harald Eriksen (Stig R. Amdam)
A divisional head in the Oslo police, Harald has to try to keep a lid on temporal prejudice in his workforce and deal with an ex-Bohemian journalist determined to get some straight answers about the murder of the tattooed woman.
Urd Sighvatsdottir (Ágústa Eva Erlendsdóttir)
An incident at a museum sees Alfhildr reunited with a face from the past, a fellow shieldmaiden. Urd liked to party then and she likes to party now. But she’s dealing with a challenge that will take a different kind of courage to her days on the battlefield.
Ingrid (Ylva Bjørkaas Thedin)
Lars Haaland’s 17-year-old daughter, Ingrid mostly lives with her mother and stepfather. She’s about to finish school, and her plans for schoolies shenanigans play a crucial role in the problems that unfold.
Gregers (Kyrre Haugen Sydness)
Ingrid’s pipe-smoking, Ibsen-quoting 1800s-era stern stepfather, Gregers turns out to be more than the one-dimensional character it would be easy to see him as.
Tommy (Stig Henrik Hoff)
Tommy is eking out a living as a food delivery guy, peddling meals around Oslo. He has no memory of his life back in the Viking era, but his face is very familiar to Alfhildr and Urd. Could he really be Viking leader Tore Hund, torn through time? (While most of the characters in Beforeigners are obviously fictional, Tore Hund, also known as Thor the Hound, was a real historical figure, a Viking chief who led the resistance against the rise of Christianity in Norway.)
Nevn Ukjent (Oddgeir Thune)
A wealthy prehistoric (aka Stone Age) time migrant, Nevn likes to get around with nothing on. He’s got plenty going on, though.
All 6 episodes of Beforeigners are now streaming at SBS On Demand.