The short answer: We hope so.
The first (and in some cases second) season of each of these ten shows was fabulous, and we’re anxious for their follow-up season(s) to be shown in the US. The question is: Will they?
Black Spot: Season 2 (Zone blanche) (France)
The first season of this Twin Peaks– and Jordskott-ish noir mystery drama was certainly binge-worthy, with its storylines featuring an 8-fingered sheriff, a bunch of unnatural deaths, and a wolf that acts as a guardian angel of sorts. (Details here.)
Season 2, which premieres on France 2 on February 11, picks up two months after the Season 1 cliffhanger. The sheriff, Major Laurène Weiss (series lead Suliane Brahim, Meurtre en trios actes), has survived her injuries, and the strange goings-on in and around Villefranche continue — including the (re)appearance of the frightening horned creature that Laurène now believes is threatening the town.
Season 1 debuted on Prime Video in the US but it is no longer available anywhere in the States, so this begs the question of whether Amazon’s SVOD platform will pick up Season 2. If not, I hope another stateside streaming service does (and brings back Season 1, as well).
Follow the Money: Season 3 (Bedrag) (Denmark)
The main storylines in Seasons 1 and 2 of this multiple award-winning crime thriller deal with white collar economic crime committed by CEOs, banking bigwigs, and those who would do their bidding, while a secondary plot follows a couple of street criminals.
Stars in these two seasons include Thomas Bo Larsen (Veni Vidi Vici), Natalie Madueño (Warrior), Thomas Hwan (Borgen), Esben Smed (A Fortunate Man), Claes Ljungmark (Arne Dahl), Waage Sandø (Unit One), Nikolaj Lie Kaas (“Department Q” films), and David Dencik (Gentlemen & Gangsters).
Season 3, considered a spin-off that can stand alone, focuses on street crime and drug dealing (as well as related corporate malfeasance), and follows returning characters Nicky (Esben Smed) and Alf Rybjerg (Thomas Hwan). Nicky is now a heavy hitter in the Danish criminal underworld, while Alf is seconded from the state police’s fraud squad to a gang unit in order to help narcotics investigators crack Nicky’s accounts and finances.
Joining the cast is Maria Rich (Rita), who plays Anna Berg Hansen, an accomplished but overlooked bank employee who gets recognized for her skills in other ways and becomes an important money-laundering accomplice.
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Link TV launched Seasons 1 and 2 in the US (details here), and episodes are still available for streaming on their website. Season 3 debuted in Denmark on January 6, but there’s been no word yet on whether it’s been picked up by Link TV or another linear TV or streaming channel for US audiences, so stay tuned for updates.
Gomorrah: Season 3 (Italy)
Based on journalist Roberto Saviano’s best-selling book, Season 1 of this gritty, intense, and violent mafia crime drama centers on the on-the-street, behind-closed-doors, and behind-bars activities, allegiances, betrayals, and reprisals of the Naples-based Savastano clan, as told through the eyes of Ciro Di Marzio (Marco D’Amore, A Quiet Life), the right hand man of the clan’s godfather, Pietro Savastanno (Fortunato Cerlino, Medici: Masters of Florence).
Spoilers ahead! … In Season 2, Pietro Savastano is in hiding, his son Gennaro (Salvatore Esposito, Zeta) is fighting for his life and his place in the clan, Ciro is plotting to build his own empire, and mafia don Salvatore Conte (Marco Palvetti, The Big Dream) is building an alliance against the Savastanos.
Season 3 finds Gennaro a man of power, fear, and respect in the Neopolitan underworld, and sees Ciro realizing he’s been played in Sofia and returning to Naples.
Seasons 1 and 2 premiered in the US on SundanceTV before moving to streaming and digital download services. It isn’t a given that Season 3 will be picked up by SundanceTV or a different linear TV or streaming channel, so stay tuned for news about this. Season 4 is set to premiere on Sky Italia at the end of March.
Hooked: Season 2 (Koukussa) (Finland)
The first season of this award-winning drama follows former lovers — current cop Oskari (Tommi Eronen, Presidentti) and former fugitive Krista (Matleena Kuusniemi, Bordertown) — whose reunion after her return to Helsinki is fraught with the pair’s emotional baggage, issues arising from their current circumstances, and their respective codependencies. (More about the show here.)
The second and final season, which completes its first run on Finnish national public broadcaster YLE in February, opens three years after the the Season 1 finale. It finds Oskari the victim of his choices in defending Krista and drinking heavily, living in a small cottage and working in construction after losing his home and job.
For her part, Krista has built a new life for herself. Although she escaped Finland, she didn’t drugs, and is running a travel business and cannabis shop in Thailand with the new man in her life. She and Oskari haven’t spoken since she left, and doing so would endanger them both… but will they be able to stay apart forever? Curious minds want to know.
Acorn TV premiered Season 1 in the US, so it’s possible they will bring us Season 2, too. If you haven’t seen the first season, visit the Finnish Language TV Programs page for a list of where it’s available for streaming.
Infieles: Seasons 2 & 3 (Spain)
This addictive Desperate Housewives-, Sex and the City-like contemporary dramedy follows the lives of five female friends in Barcelona. (Details here.)
Produced in the Catalan language, the show was dubbed into Castillian Spanish for US audiences and arrived stateside in August 2016 on Prime Video and roundabout the same time on Hulu (no longer available) — seven years (!) after the series launched in Spain. Seasons 2 and 3 followed quickly domestically (in 2010 and 2011), but not in the States, where fans of the show have been waiting to find out what happens after that humdinger of a Season 1 cliffhanger. Whether Amazon, Hulu, or another streamer brings the later seasons to the US is anyone’s guess, so here’s hoping that one of them does.
Merlí: Seasons 2 & 3 (Spain)
One of the supporting actors in Infieles is Francesc Orella, who leads the cast of this Catalan-language dramedy. In it he plays a womanizing middle-aged man who becomes the philosophy teacher (one with unorthodox teaching methods at that) at his son’s high school (awkward!). (More info here.)
The second season, which adds new student and teacher characters, finds Merlí expanding his repertoire of nonconformist teaching tactics to get his class of “peripatetics” to grasp in their everyday lives the messages of various philosophers.
— Merlí (@_peripatetico) September 7, 2016
And in the third season, Merlí realizes he has a rival for the students’ affections as the teens prepare to finish their last year at the institute and look ahead to university.
Reading the blurbs and watching the Seasons 2 and 3 trailers is all well and good, but nothing beats watching the actual episodes. It’s been more than two years since Netflix premiered Season 1 in the US, and even though Merlí completed its run on Catalan channel TV3 a year ago, stateside fans are still waiting for the last two seasons. The show is a Netflix Original series outside of Spain, so if anyone were going to bring Seasons 2 and 3 to the States, it would probably be the international streaming behemoth. So we continue to wait…
The Neighbors: Season 3 (Nieuwe buren) (Netherlands)
This Dutch psychological drama is intense. Season 1 revolves around Peter (Daan Schuurmans, Lord & Master, Framed) and Eva (Bracha van Doesburgh, The Godless, Baantjer Mysteries), a couple whose move to the suburbs and growing intimacy with neighbors Steef (Thijs Römer, Moordvrouw) and Rebecca Blok (Katja Schuurman, Flight HS13) changes their lives forever.
Season 2 finds new neighbors Steffi (Karina Smulders, Familie Kruys) and Lex (Fedja van Huêt, The Adulterer) — a couple with a secret — living in the former Blok home, while Steef is out for revenge against Eva, and Eva forges a plan to fulfill her deepest desire.
In Season 3, Peter and Eva are back in the ‘burbs, this time with a baby they’re adopting. But new neighbors Milo (Tibor Lukács, The Godless) and Anouk (Fockeline Ouwerkerk, Moordvrouw) seem to know quite a bit about the baby’s biological parents, while their teen daughter discovers the neighborhood isn’t as boring as she thought.
Amazon brought the first two seasons to Prime Video US, so it will probably bring the third season to stateside audiences, too. Season 4 is in production.
Public Enemy: Season 2 (Ennemi public) (Belgium)
Season 1 of this psychological crime thriller revolves around what happens in a small town in the Ardennes after convicted child killer Guy Béranger (Angelo Bison, Resistance) is released from prison under the supervision of Inspector Chloé Muller (Stéphanie Blanchoud, I Am a Soldier) and into the care of the monks at the local abbey. Nothing goes swimmingly for any of them, especially after a girl from town goes missing. (Further details here.)
Season 2 is expected to debut in Belgium in the first quarter of 2019. Story-wise, the new season finds the parents of a little girl who disappeared two years ago contacting Muller as a last resort, prompting her to return to the police force. As Muller investigates, she discovers details that link this case to the disappearance of her younger sister, Jessica. In order to learn more, Muller has no choice but to see Beranger again. As it turns out, he needs her help, too.
The first season of Public Enemy arrived in the US on Sundance Now and the Sundance Now channel on Amazon, where it’s still available for streaming. Given that the SVOD service features other Euro TV series, there’s no reason to believe it won’t bring Season 2 to its subscribers at some point, so stay tuned for updates.
Trapped: Season 2 (Ófærð) (Iceland)
When a mystery-crime drama series opens with fisherman finding the torso of a mutilated and dismembered corpse in their nets, one expects the whole season to be compelling. This one is, and it makes for some serious binge-watching, as police chief Andri Ólafsson (Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, The Missing, Lady Dynamite) and his team investigate murder and more in the coastal town of Seyðisfjörður, all while a blizzard is moving in and stranding everyone. (More details here.)
Season 2 premiered in Iceland in December and will complete its run in February. The storyline involves police investigations into murder, kidnapping, and plots undertaken by protestors — all set against the backdrops of nationalism, immigrant labor, and environmentalism.
Pay cable channel Viceland launched Trapped in the US nearly two years ago, but its current programming is more factual than fiction, so Season 2 isn’t really a good fit. Perhaps Amazon will pick it up, since Season 1 is only available stateside on Prime Video. We shall see.
Umbre: Season 2 (Romania)
The first season of this crime drama, based on the Australian series Small Time Gangster, rocked my Euro TV viewing world. Intense, violent, and utterly gripping, it follows Relu Oncescu (Serban Pavlu, The Japanese Dog), a man leading a double life in Bucharest until the worlds of his taxi-driving, family man identity and his money-collector-for-a-mobster one collide. (Further details here.)
The second season picks up soon after the events of the Season 1 finale, with a now-separated Relu trying to figure out how to make good on a promise he made before he learned a vital piece of information. Complicating matters for him are a bent copper who’s now on the scene and the arrival in town of the real head of the Bucharest underworld.
Acorn TV launched Umbre in the US (back in 2015!), so the SVOD service could bring us Season 2. Then again, HBO might, especially since the premium cable channel has been adding shows from its sister company, HBO Europe, which produces Umbre. Regardless of whether it’s one of these two or another linear TV or streaming channel, someone needs to bring the second season of Umbre to the States, cos fans of the show want to see what happens after that twist ending of a Season 1 cliffhanger!
If you haven’t watched Umbre yet, visit the Romanian Language TV Programs page for a list of where it’s available for streaming. Season 3 is expected to debut in Romania in 2019.
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