Airs on KCET for 20 Consecutive Weeks
Los Angeles, Calif., May 14, 2013 - For the first time on KCET, Southern California viewers can witness the intrigue and excitement of the internationally acclaimed Danish series, Borgen, a political drama hailed by The New York Times as "one of the best shows...on American television" and what Newsweek calls "the best TV show you've never seen." Borgen premieres on KCET on Friday, May 17 at 10 p.m. and repeats every Monday at 10 p.m.
Quickly gaining an ardent following and high critical praise during its year-long run on Link TV, the Danish drama sensation from the producers of the acclaimed series The Killing, uncovers a world of political gamesmanship, the intricate public and private lives of politicians, media spinners, and the reporters who traffic in their triumphs and failures.
Broadcast in Danish with English subtitles, viewers will be able to catch Borgen from the beginning and follow the twists and turns of the plot leading up to the much anticipated October premiere of Season 3 in the U.S. on KCET and Link TV. The first two seasons of the BAFTA-award-winning series will air on KCET for 20 consecutive weeks. Each one-hour episode will also stream online at www.kcet.org/Borgen for two weeks following their broadcast dates (please check online for specific streaming dates).
"Borgen is one of the finest television dramas currently in production anywhere in the world. It is also a wonderful example of how our merged organization can widen the reach of top quality content like this riveting breakthrough series," Paul S. Mason, Chief Strategy Officer, KCETLink. "We are proud to share this powerful and entertaining drama, on television and online, and we're confident that the characters and the issues presented will find a loyal following in Southern California."
The multi-award winning Borgen stars Sidse Babett Knudsen as Birgitte Nyborg Christensen; Pilou Asbæk as troubled spin doctor, Kasper Juul; and Birgitte Hjort Sørensen, as ambitious news anchor, Katrine Fønsmark. The show is created and written by producer Adam Price and co-writers Jeppe Gjervig Gram and Tobias Lindholm. It is produced by DR, the Danish public broadcaster that produced the international Danish hit series, The Killing.
BORGEN SEASONS ONE & TWO: EPISODE DESCRIPTIONS
Episode 1: Decency in the Middle
A general election has been called in Denmark. The new leader of the centrist Moderate Party, 40-year-old Birgitte Nyborg Christensen, has swiftly attained great popularity with the electorate thanks to her charming persona and heartfelt humanistic outlook. But Birgitte is under pressure. Her party has not yet declared its support for either of the two competing candidates for prime minister, Michael Laugesen of the Labour Party, or Lars Hesselboe of the Liberal Party, who has led the center-right coalition government for the past six years. In her private life, Birgitte is happily married to a businessman, Phillip, who has placed his career on hold for her political career. He teaches at Copenhagen Business School and looks after their two children, Laura (12) and Magnus (8). Birgitte and Phillip have agreed that they will trade off on family and professional commitments, and soon it will be Birgitte's turn to take a back seat.
Episode 2: Count to 90
In the days following the big landslide election, Birgitte Nyborg Christensen finds herself in the eye of a political storm. Her party, the Moderates, was the principal winner of the election, and Birgitte has been appointed Royal Formateur to lead inter-party negotiations. The onus is on her to bring together a divided parliament and form a new government, a herculean task that tests Birgitte's will and political mettle.
Episode 3: The Art of the Possible
Two months after Birgitte Nyborg succeeds in forming a coalition government and becoming prime minister, and now she faces her greatest challenge: the annual state budget. The budget bill must be passed by parliament, just before a well-deserved Christmas break. But in the middle of an official press conference, Birgitte is confronted with the news that two members of the Labour Party are refusing to vote for the bill. An embarrassing defeat for Birgitte, who is now forced to re-open budget negotiations amidst a political snake pit.
Episode 4: 100 Days
Journalist Katrine Fønsmark gets the greatest scoop of her reporting career when she is contacted by an anonymous source in the Defense Intelligence Service. He shows her pictures of CIA detainees leaving an aircraft at Thule Air Base in Greenland -- proof that the U.S. has conducted prisoner renditions on Danish soil. The revelations come at a bad time for Birgitte, who has now been in office for almost 100 days and finds herself and her party in desperate need of a positive story and some concrete political results. Instead, she now has to clean up a mess left behind by the previous administration.
Episode 5: Men Who Love Women
Together with her Minister of Economic Affairs, the esteemed Henriette Klitgaard, Birgitte introduces a historic bill, under which it will be compulsory for the boards of Danish companies to have a composition of fifty percent female membership. The controversial proposal doesn't exactly receive a warm welcome within the ranks of government. Birgitte's Minister of Finance, Bent Sejrø, fears the reaction of the biggest companies, who are strongly opposed to gender quotas -- mostly because they have almost no women on their richly ensconced, male-dominate boards.
Episode 6: State Visit
The president of the former Soviet state of Turgisia, Alexander Grozin, is making a visit to Denmark to take over the chairmanship of the international Organization for Security, Democracy and Development, the OSDD. At the same time, Grozin announces that Turgisia intends to invest one billion Euros in Danish wind turbine technology, thereby opening up the possibility of a Danish export venture in the former eastern bloc. In a potential shake-up to the deal, Turgisian poet and dissident Vladimir Bayanov arrives in Copenhagen at the same time as Grozin. The two are mortal enemies. Grozin labels Bayanov as a terrorist, and Bayanov views Grozin as an undemocratic tyrant.
Episode 7: See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil
Just as life seems to return to normal at "the Castle" after the Bayanov case, a startling discovery is made at the headquarters of the Social Solidarity party. State-of-the-art surveillance equipment, installed by the Police Intelligence Service, is discovered at the headquarters of the Social Solidarity Party. Bugging a political party is a serious matter, so trusted advisor Kasper Juul recommends that Birgitte stay out of the affair and let the Minister of Justice, Troels Höxenhaven, handle it.
Episode 8: The Silly Season
It's summer, and like the rest of the country, things are quiet at "the Castle." The only real news that the papers seem to report is the release of Michael Laugesen's new book, which promises to reveal everything from his time at the Castle. This worries Birgitte's trusted advisor Kasper Juul, because he was the one who leaked revealing documents to Laugesen that lost the election for both the running incumbent and his opponent Lars Hesselboe. Kasper doesn't receive much support from Birgitte, who makes an awkward attempt to take a holiday with her family - but there is precious little time for fun with the children or marital togetherness when Mom is the prime minister of Denmark.
Episode 9: Divide and Rule
Denmark needs a new fighter aircraft, and Minister of Defense Hans Christian Thorsen has been looking forward to announcing his choice of the F-26 Defender as its future solution. But Birgitte has stipulated that all such decisions from the ministries must be cleared with her, and she becomes suspicious when Thorsen, a former businessman with industry connections, selects a pricey model which will ensure big paychecks for Danish defense companies.
Episode 10: The First Tuesday in October
Birgitte Nyborg's government is facing a severe test shortly before the annual commencement of the Parliamentary session. The opinion poll ratings for the Moderates are the worst in ages, while the Labour Party is surging forward, thus pushing Birgitte to make a play to expand her influence. Meanwhile, her family is breaking up -- she and Phillip put on a happy public face, but behind closed doors it's the silent treatment
Episode 11: Children
A year has passed since we last saw Prime Minister Birgitte Nyborg. In the season opener, Birgitte is visiting soldiers stationed in Afghanistan when a deadly strike hits their encampment. Now she must choose: send the troops home or stage a counterattack? Reporter Katrine Fønsmark approaches the father of one of the fallen soldiers for a story, while Kasper Juul juggles his job as the PM's spin-doctor and his new girlfriend, Lotte.
Episode 12: In Brussels No One Can Hear You Scream
Birgitte Nyborg must appoint a new EU commission and her old mentor, Bent Sejrø, is the obvious candidate. Seeing it as a ploy to get rid of him, Sejrø refuses Birgitte's offer, which leads to a power play with serious consequences. Meanwhile, Kasper prepares to move in with his girlfriend, Lotte, but is haunted by his history with Katrine. Katrine and Hanne have grown closer, united by daily battles with their boss at Ekspres: Michael Laugesen.
Episode 13: The Last Worker
Birgitte's government prepares to present a new reform package, which is being polished at a political seminar. But when party leader Bjørn Marrot comes under a personal media attack, Birgitte senses a rebellion brewing, and the seminar dissolves in chaos. Meanwhile, the tension grows on the home front where Phillip has a new girlfriend. And Katrine covers the political seminar for Laugesen, but he has his own agenda on the table.
Episode 14: Battle Ready
After Bjørn Marrot's exit, Troels Höxenhaven steps in as the new party leader, jumping at the opportunity to exploit the turn of events. When pirates hijack a Danish ship off Somalia's coast, Höxenhaven diverts attention from Birgitte, who badly needs a success story. Meanwhile, compromising photos of Höxenhaven turn up at the Ekspres. Laugesen wants to use them against Höxenhaven, but Katrine is skeptical.
Episode 15: Plant a Tree
Birgitte Nyborg is about to negotiate the environmental element of the new reform package, but she must face the reality of parties unwilling to compromise. Kasper convinces her that underhanded tactics can help win her a majority for the reform. Meanwhile, Katrine receives an unusual job offer that tests her personal beliefs. And at home, Birgitte's children are clearly affected by their mother's stress -- Laura in particular.
Episode 16: Them and Us
Just as Birgitte's new government is getting back on track after the Green Party's exit, internal strife erupts among coalition partners. This time it's from the right, as Svend Åge Madsen submits a bill to lower the age of criminal responsibility to 12 years -- an issue that splits the political system. Meanwhile, Laura is recovering from a panic attack, but Birgitte won't admit to herself that her daughter is ill.
Episode 17: What is Lost Inwardly Must Be Gained Outwardly (Pt. 1)
Birgitte's government is losing steam -- internal differences are growing and only compromise legislation is being passed. Just as opinion polls indicate Birgitte may lose the next election, financier Joachim Crohne emerges with an idea that could save her political career. But can his motives be trusted? Meanwhile, Kasper and Katrine are growing close again, but their jobs are at odds: Katrine's role is to uncover secrets, while Kasper's is to conceal them.
Episode 18: What is Lost Inwardly Must Be Gained Outwardly (Pt. 2)
The eyes of the world are on Copenhagen and Birgitte Nyborg as peace talks draw near between North and South Kharun. Everyone has been working around the clock, and although Kasper is now living with Katrine, they rarely see each other. When Birgitte realizes Denmark is only a small piece in a major international power game, her negotiation skills are put to the test. Can she end the bloody civil war?
Episode 19: The Sanctity of Private Life
Laura's illness has worsened over the past few months, and Birgitte now feels terrible about failing to recognize it. When Laura's psychiatrist suggests admitting her to a private psychiatric hospital, Birgitte and Phillip immediately agree. This move becomes problematic when Birgitte's own tax reforms force her to pay out of pocket for the hospital cost. At home, Birgitte and Phillip are rediscovering some of their lost love, despite Philip's continued relationship with Cecilie.
Episode 20: An Extraordinary Remark
In the season finale, Birgitte is on a month leave from her post as prime minister to focus on family, and Hans-Christian Thorsen, Labor Party chairman, has positioned himself to be her possible successor. Birgitte is torn about whether or not she will return to work. Meanwhile, as Kasper and Katrine hunt for apartments together, their plan is derailed by an argument about the possibility of having children. Will one of them relent?
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