'The Valhalla Murders' season 2? Icelandic show ties up all loose ends, but Netflix can still give it another shot
Contains spoilers for 'The Valhalla Murders'
The Icelandic murder mystery is pretty straightforward and while it does take the majority of the first half of the series to explain every storyline meticulously, it races through as it nears the finish line. Before we get into the events of the final episode, here's a quick recap.
There's a serial killer on the loose and his murders are violent, painful and gruesome. His first murder is committed at Reykjavik’s harbor where he kills a man named Thor (Vilhjálmur Hjálmarsson). There are multiple stab wounds, and the victim's eyes are gouged out. A similar murder follows soon after. This time, the victim, Omar (Theodór Júlíusson), a renowned real-estate builder suffers the same fate. Officer Kata (Nína Dögg Filippusdóttir) is assigned the case and finds an able partner in an Oslo detective, Arnar ((Björn Thors).
Over the course of the series, there are multiple storylines that get weaved in, including a glimpse at Kata and Arnar's personal lives. Coming back to the investigation, the duo's attempts to unmask the killer leads them to Valhalla, an abandoned boys' home.
The only clue they have at the moment is a photograph found at Omar's home that establishes the victims' association with Valhalla and hints that the savage murders were an act of revenge especially after the investigation brings to light a young boy’s skeleton.
It is then revealed the victims were all staff of the home who abused the children, with one unknown person in particular who also raped the boys. The serial killer is shown to be the father of the boy and he snuffed out the lives of the staff members as payback.
However, Kata and Arnar see several inconsistencies in the case and reopen it. To their horror, the new developments see Magnús (Sigurður Skúlason), Kata's boss involved in the conspiracy and so is Petur Alfredsson, the state prosecutor, who earlier plays a key role in assisting with the Valhalla deaths case.
Episode 8: Monster in the Dark
The episode picks up after Kata and Arnar put the pieces together after realizing that it was Petur who was behind the murders and rape attacks on the boys. Kata reaches Petur's house first and requests him to reopen the case. Petur drugs her and beats her up with plans to kill her and dump her body into the sea.
Arnar, despite requesting the department to help, gets no assistance as they are reluctant to take any form of action against the state prosecutor. The detective takes it on himself to bring Petur to confess but is in for a rude shock when he realizes that Kata had already encountered Petur. With this is also the grim realization that Kata's life is in danger and Arnar rushes to the nearby harbor and finds Petur's car.
In the meantime, a still dazed Kata tries escaping but is unsuccessful until help arrives in the form of Arnar. Petur takes on Arnar and a bloody fight ensues with the latter seriously injured after being stabbed twice. Petur tries to kill Kata again, but Arnar rushes towards him and they topple over to the sea below. Kata jumps in and pulls Arnar out of the water, however, Petur's body is not shown.
The final minutes see Kata and Arnar recover at the hospital while a TV news report says Petur is absconding. Magnus is now in custody and is awaiting questioning. The episode ends with Kata standing in front of the mirror and rolling up her sleeve to reveal a hideous scar.
At this stage, it is unclear if the series will be renewed for a second season. The ending is not really a cliffhanger and while there's potential for a second installment, it can also be a closed chapter here. It's also safe to speculate that Arnar and Kata have what could rightly be called the start of a new relationship.
'The Valhalla Murders' is available for streaming on Netflix.