The Bridge season four: a spoiler-free preview

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As the trailer puts it, "Every Saga Ends", and from next month we'll see how Saga Norén's story comes to a conclusion as The Bridge returns.

The hit Swedish/Danish crime drama will move from its former home on BBC Four to BBC Two for eight final episodes.

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Here's a spoiler-free refresher on where we left the show (although there are spoilers up to the end of season three if you've not watched that far).

Thure Lindhardt as Henrik Sabroe and Sofia Helin as Saga Norén in The Bridge (Photo: Sveriges Television / DR)

Saga is behind bars

When we left Saga (Sofia Helin) at the end of season three, she wasn't in a great spot.

The leather-trouser wearing, Porsche driving detective from the Malmö side of the bridge was under suspicion of killing her own mother, with a motive and forensic evidence tying her to the crime.

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This series picks up the thread two years later, with Saga languishing in jail, where her distinctive personality traits are misunderstood and she's barely coping.

It's certainly an intriguing start to the series: how will the talented cop clear her name from behind bars?

As writers Hans Rosenfeldt and Camilla Ahlgren put it: "Saga is coming to terms with the dire consequences of being accused of her mother’s murder when a macabre crime seemingly linked to migration takes place."

There's another shocking murder case

Of course, it wouldn't be The Bridge without a "macabre crime" with political connotations, and this time it involves a woman who's been gagged and buried in the ground up to her shoulders, while an unknown perp collects stones from a pile beneath the now familiar Øresund Bridge and chucks them at her.

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It transpires that the victim is in charge of immigration for the Danish government, and the nature of the killing immediately raises suspicions that an extremist group could be involved. How this case pans out is anyone's guess, but going on past series we can expect red herrings at every turn.

"I think we’ve come up with possibly the most disturbing opening scene ever," Rosenfeldt told The Huffington Post.

Henrik has a new partner

By the end of season three Danish detective Henrik Sabroe (Thure Lindhardt) and Saga were caught up in a sexually charged game of will-they-won't-they.

With Saga out of the picture (for now), Henrik's new partner is Jonas Mandrup (played by Borgen and The Killing II’s Mikael Birkkjær), who doesn't do much to endear himself to audiences by breaking every rule on political correctness going.

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Mikael Birkkjær plays new character Jonas Mandrup (Photo: Sveriges Television / DR)

The pair focus their investigations on a refugee and a left-wing activist group called Red October – but there's no telling how deep into the Scandinavian underworld their enquiries could go.

Henrik, meanwhile, is still grieving for his late wife, but hasn't given up on finding his missing daughters, and this mystery is likely to form a central thread of the final series.

It will definitely be the last season

This will categorically be the final season of The Bridge.

Producer Anders Landström has already answered this question: "It is obviously very sad to say goodbye to Saga after four incredible seasons, but our talented writers, Hans and Camilla have an extraordinary end in store for viewers.

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"Sofia has played the role of Saga with a rawness and truth rarely seen on screen and it’s been a pleasure to work with her, and Thure on a series of which we are immensely proud.”

And Piv Bernth, the head of drama at The Bridge’s Danish co-producer DR, told Danish tabloid the Expressen last year: "Without giving away the plot, it does not allow for further continuation."

There won't be a return for Martin

Kim Bodnia played Saga's Copenhagen partner Martin Rohde in seasons one and two, before she ensured he was locked up for murdering Jens, the man who killed his son.

Kim Bodnia won't be making a return in The Bridge

Fans who may have been hoping that the flawed detective could make some kind of cameo comeback in the final season will be disappointed, however.

"Kim did not want to come back," Rosenfeldt has confirmed.

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The Scandinavian critics approved

Reviews for the final season of The Bridge in Europe, where it was broadcast earlier this year, have hailed it as the best yet.

The Swedish Expressen newspaper said Helin has "never been better" as Saga, while tabloid Aftonbladet was equally positive: "The feeling is that of total control, convincing us we won't be disappointed regardless of the path The Bridge chooses to take for its swansong."

When will UK audiences be able to watch The Bridge season 4?

There's no exact date yet, but the BBC has confirmed that The Bridge season four will be broadcast on BBC Two in May.

All three series of The Bridge have been added to the iPlayer, if you need to catch up.

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This article originally appeared on our sister title, iNews

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