Tatort: Dein Name sei Harbinger
December 13, 2017 9:22 PM - Season 47, Episode 13 - Subscribe

Starting with a corpse found in a burned out delivery truck, Berlin duo Nina Rubin and Robert Karow discover similar murders stretching back several years. What links the victims?

For once the schizophrenic wasn't the murderer (well, mostly). Great use of the noise and lighting in the U-Bahn to give a patina of unreality. Otherwise not a strong showing.

After spending so much time on the gritty aspects of Rubin's personal life in previous episodes, the minimal explanation for the cut on her face was a real switch. Likewise her cutting the night short with Feil. So much about Rubin is unclear, or I'm just not getting it.

Is Karow just another impulsive genius jerk? His methods of getting close to the suspect have gotten progressively more disturbing/unbelievable.

I'm undecided on this Berlin team.
posted by mrcrow (2 comments total)
One nice thing in this episode was the reveal of the 'crime' behind the greater crime - I don't want to give it away - but that was an interesting twist.

The second twist and that seems unlikely at best, happens in the security-camera booth when the 'suspect' watches video of himself standing alone when in the filmed moment he was having a conversation with a flower girl. It's an interesting idea that is handled a little less than elegantly, that technology can ratify emotional experiences: Or somehow provide a stable yardstick against which to compare subjective experience. I suspect it wasn't meant to be that interesting, they just wanted the 'suspect' to realize something, but the way they went about showing is kind of provocative. What if that kind of digital touchstone had been used in "Memento"? OK, digital video wasn't as ubiquitous then and the tattoos were cool, but it introduces another layer to how we construct and ratify(?) our experiences.

Doesn't make a show, though. Rubin's life ... actually a lot of these lives are realistically mundane and sad (of the Dresden officers one is a bit xenophobic and has a son she's turning into a jerk: and then there's Ulrik Tukur's storylines, yoiks.) Having kids is tough at times and parents fuck up... but the thing is, I want the story wrapped up tight and many aspects of a character's life are superfluous to the story. The way that Karow is quite the asshole in this episode is entirely appropriate. He's just an asshole. Rubin could be just an unhappy single mom instead of a particularly unhappy mom. (The cut on her eye could also be read as a referral to her affection for 'rough' sex (first episode she appears in) - because, see, Berlin is rough and sexy (Karow also) so the Kommisaren have to be as well. I guess.
posted by From Bklyn at 12:34 AM on December 14, 2017

The background crime was deeply disturbing in ways that would have carried more weight in a less complicated episode.

That the suspect had the presence of mind to accept the security footage as reality made me genuinely sad for the character. He tried to live a decent life but was abused because of his mental illness. I know he’s supposed to be sketchy and creepy, but he’s also a victim.

I thought Rubin said the cut was from an argument with her kid, but I may have misunderstood. Making Karow an asshole is such a cheap way out. I want to like them because Berlin is one of my favorite places in the world but I may have to accept their limitations.
posted by mrcrow at 3:32 PM on December 15, 2017

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