'Young Wallander' Ending Explained: Climax leaves door open for Season 2 as Kurt's first case remains unsolved
Spoilers for 'Young Wallander' Season 1
And with that, Season 1 of Netflix's 'Young Wallander' came to an end. In many ways, we'll say that the ending of the latest detective series was surreal and sobering. But boy! did it leave us wanting for more? In this case, we'll say we would have prefered it if Netflix had made its six episodes into one 1.5-hour-long feature just like BBC's Kenneth Branagh's 'Wallander'. However, we also must add that Netflix's production is crisper in nature.
In 'Young Wallander', we follow a young 20-something Kurt Wallander (played by Adam Pålsson), a young beat cop who, after the violent killing of a teenager, is confronted with the brute realities of Sweden. What follows is his desperate quest to find the truth and deliver justice to those for whom it remains elusive. Each episode brings a new hurdle and Kurt surpasses them with an earnestness that is unique to his character.
Despite that, the perpetrators of the crime manage to walk away scot-free. After their lead suspect Gustav Munck (Alan Emrys) is found innocent, Kurt and Superintendent Hemberg (Richard Dillane) rush to save his life. They finally discover that it is actually Gustav's brother Karl-Axel Munck (Jacob Collins-Levy) who is the mastermind behind the string of crimes that have hit the city of Malmö.
Soon enough, they find out that Karl-Axel plans on killing his brother using a bomb. At first, they reach the grand opening of the shelter that Mona (Ellise Chappell) is helping Gustav with. This turns out to be a red herring, after which they reach the docks. While Gustav is unharmed at the moment, the two rush to get him to a safe place. As they're walking towards their cars, Gustav unlocks his car and the bomb goes off — Hemberg was right beside the car by then and no amount of shouting or warning from Kurt helps him.
Can we just point out how heartbreaking this death was? Superintendent Hemberg did not exactly need to die in the finale episode of Season 1. Kurt and he shared a relationship that we had gotten quite fond of and for the young detective himself, Hemberg was an important person.
Back at the police station, Kurt and Frida Rask (Leanne Best) sit down with Karl-Axel and his entire team of lawyers to get him to confess or charge him. But nothing happens — he walks away without a scratch. Hiding behind all the money and power of the Muncks, the sociopath has once again escaped the law.
So disturbed is Kurt after Karl-Axel leaves that he follows him only to warn him that his money and position won't always protect him. There, he sees Karl-Axel greeted by his mother.
Shortly afterwards, it is revealed that Kurt is quitting the force — much to the dismay of Rask, he won't even stay to pay tribute to Superintendent Hemberg. What good did their investigation do at all if the person responsible could just walk away, what good did it do to Hemberg, who got justice — questions like these were swirling in his mind and he even expresses them to Rask.
When he walks away, his friend Reza (Yasen Atour) also gives him a look. Towards the last few minutes of the finale, it is revealed the Gustav has indeed taken over the Munck corporation while Karl-Axel's chapter is still open.
Mona and Kurt go back to his neighborhood. It is here that Ibra (Jordan Adene) expresses his gratitude to Kurt — because of his efforts, Ibra's contract with the football club still stands and they're welcoming him with open arms. When they reach on top, the episode ends with Mona entering his house. With that concluding episode, the creators have left the doors open for a Season 2.
Kurt is obviously meant to be in the police force, all of Henning Mankell's books are written so. The question is when will he return? For one, Kurt Wallander's first case remains unsolved. And he's got the bug — it's only a matter of time till he returns. Now we must patiently wait for Netflix to renew the show for a new season. Although we must point out that we're still grieving Dillane's explosive exit from the season leaving no possibility for a return.
All episodes of 'Young Wallander' are currently streaming on Netflix.