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Elves (Nisser) - Episode 1 - TV Series Review

Home > Everywhere > Christmas | Language | Rainy Day | Spirituality | Television
by Jennifer Muirhead (subscribe)
I am learning all the time. The tombstone will be my diploma. ~ Eartha Kitt
Published December 13th 2021
Stay out of the forest

Elves (also known by its original title, Nisser) is a Danish series about a family spending their Christmas holiday in a rustic cottage on the remote Aarmand Island. Instead of sticking to the coastal road as they were told to, the family take a shortcut through the forest and they accidentally hit something with their car (as is so often the case in monster movies). When they get out to investigate they are warned off by a surly local man, Møller (Rasmus Hammerich). Although her parents insist they didn't hit anything, Josephine (Sonja Steen) is suspicious about the black goo on the front of the car and sneaks off in the night to investigate. She finds an injured creature near the side of the road and brings it home with her.

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When we first meet Josephine she is introducing herself to a dog, which makes me like her immediately. While she does go on to be a sulky tween (or teenager? I'm not sure how old she is), it's hard not to sympathise with her sneaking out to find the creature when her parents seem to have chosen willful ignorance.

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The spooky forest.

The first episode is mainly setting the scene, with the secretive locals, a mysterious fence across a clearing in the woods, and the beautiful, spooky forest. The soundtrack is haunting, especially the song that plays over the end credits.

Content Warning: Animal death. There is a cow sacrificed to the elves in the opening scene. You don't see it die on screen, but there is blood. The first episode is fairly family-friendly, with no on-screen violence. Josephine does swear at one point when startled by a cat.

There are six episodes of Elves currently streaming on Netflix. I watched it in Danish with subtitles, but there is a dubbed English version if you prefer. It's an unusual holiday-themed series that will probably appeal to fantasy fans. I'm keen to see where it goes from here.

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Why? Creepy, seasonal fun.
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