Richard in Berlin Station spam

So, last weekend I finished watching the rest of Berlin Station season 2. Again, I have only watched this series for Richard Armitage, other than that it has not been able to hold my interest. I am not a spy story fan in general and even though I have occasionally enjoyed a spy movie or TV series, they are never favourites of mine. At the time, I also only watched Strike Back for Richard. I did enjoy that series, John Porter remains one of my fave Richard roles, but I was never tempted to watch the rest of Strike Back after Rich left. Berlin Station I have not been able to enjoy as much. It isn’t awful but somewhere in the “it’s an OK series” range. On a scale from 1 (awful) to 10 (great) I would give it a 6.

Let me first go into the negative: what I mostly disliked about this show was the storytelling. There are too many points of view and there is no one to really root for, even if some storylines do touch on personal situations. Most of the time you don’t quite understand why a character feels the way they do or where they’re coming from. The story itself also felt a bit flat and not very insightful at all. I also read criticism about how the German electoral system was portrayed inaccurately but I admit to fast forwarding through some of that stuff, so it never bothered me so much. The fact that I felt the need to fast forward here and there says enough about how the story did not really grip me. But it wasn’t all bad and I did find Berlin Station series 2 far less confusing than series 1…

To me, Daniel Miller (Richard Armitage, the focus of my attention) had a little more of a personality in this second season than in season 1, even though again the show wasn’t so much about him (a bit surprising as he is billed as the lead actor for this). In season 1, when he seemed conflicted, you often wondered whether the conflict was real or just part of the spy act. His relationship with Esther Krug (Mina Tander) felt like that – did he really like her or was he only having sex with her to get information from her? The second season made Daniel seem less dubious to me and more caring. It felt like he really cared for Esther and for his mission. He also really cared for Hector and for what would happen to the character of Lena Ganz. The caring also went a little overboard, though, with the shock over what happened with Otto Ganz (won’t spoil that here). I like that he was emotional (and Richard played it so well!) but the depth of emotion for such a man seemed a little far-fetched to me – Daniel seemed to care too much about what happened to a right-wing extremist he had tried to get into jail and who he didn’t seem to like so much for most of the story so far. But at least Daniel did have a bit more of a real heart in this season, and I liked that.

Another good thing about Berlin Station is that they have secured great actors for it! They gave life very adeptly to a flat story. Apart from The Armitage, I also really liked Richard Jenkins, Rhys Ifans was good, as were Leland Orser and Michelle Forbes. I also liked the addition of rookie Keke Palmer. However, Ashley Judd didn’t really impress me here – I much prefered Richard Jenkins as station chief. They should promote Michelle Forbes to that post next season.

BS station cast.PNGThe calibre of German acting was excellent too.  Mina Tander is good as Esther, although she had less to do this time around; Thomas Kretschmann as Otto Ganz and Emilia Schüle as Lena Ganz were really great…

… and I also really liked Heino Ferch’s performance as Joseph Emmerich.

Those German actors certainly have charisma! Most of all, though, I liked Richard and this is where my picture spam starts (click on the images to enlarge). I will continue on from where I left off with posting pictures, starting with episode 4 of season 2 (episode 3 only had 30 seconds of Richard in a flashback to what we already saw of him in episode 2). Beware, from here on in pictures may contain minor spoilers!

So, episode 4 starts with Daniel (Richard) meeting secretly with Esther (Mina Tander)…

They get very close, but it’s all business talk…

After that, Daniel is back in the field…

Episode 5 starts with Daniel and Hector (Rhys Ifans) trying to make sense of a sculpture. I love their smiles here, which look like they are close to cracking up hysterically…

Berlin Station S02E05 (3)

We have more Daniel in the field…

… with some very close close-ups…

And Richard in plaid, walking away…

Epsiode 6 starts with Richard in the shower and studying himself in the mirror. Oops, I should stop saying Richard and say Daniel…

There’s a knock on the door and there’s something very vulnerable and evocative about Daniel here…

Berlin Station S02E06 (4)

He puts on a shirt after Esther enters…

… and the vulnerability continues (I love the body language here!)…

Daniel and Esther get quite close again…

… and after that it’s back to business…

Daniel visits Esther at her apartment, he’s upset and does a lot of talking with his hands (I love how Richard talks with his hands!)…

… and one thing leads to another…

Episode 7 starts with Daniel waking up in Esther’s bed alone…

… but fear not, Esther is still around. There are some lovely images of Daniel in Esther’s kitchen. I wouldn’t mind seeing Richard in this Esther’s kitchen like that!

There is some very trite romanticism (“I’ll be myself and you’ll be yourself” or some such crappy dialogue), but it does give us some lovely romantic images…

… and a little more cuddling (with a lovely little smile in the last image)…

… and it’s back to spy-business…

There’s a business meeting with Esther that doesn’t go as Daniel hoped it would…

… and that night, Daniel awaits Esther in her apartment, not too pleased with the business side of things…

Episode 8 begins with an early morning disturbance in bed for the couple…

… followed by more spy-business…

In spy-stealth-mode Daniel visits a house at night, looks straight into a nanny-cam and carries the little girl out of the house (awww!)…

… followed by more spy-talk…

Episode 9, the final episode, has Daniel in a car (yet again, lots of car scenes in Berlin Station!)…

… and meeting with Esther (that last half-crinkled forehead look is so sweet) …

… and spying indoors…

… and outdoors…

There’s some final Hector stuff going on…

… and a funeral which, in the light of Richard Armitage just losing his mum, I found somewhat poignant (even though at the time of filming no such loss was happening)…

And so we come to the end. After the funeral, Daniel meets with Esther at the riverside…

… and they walk off into the sunset together…

And so we now await season 3 of Berlin Station. Admittedly, season 2 is not as bad as I had feared it to be and of course, it is great to see Richard in action and he does really well! However, for me, I’m not the greatest Berlin Station fan and a season 3 is not necessary. I’m just not so fond of the storytelling and wouldn’t mind so much if Richard quit this show. It looks like Daniel won’t play a huge role in season 3 (again, this is supposed to be about Daniel Miller yet it is remarkably little about him), as Richard seems to have finished filming a while back while the rest of the crew is still at it. No idea when season 3 will air, I think I read somewhere possibly in the fall? I am sure we will get some answers in time… Meanwhile, thanks for another good acting job, Richard!

11 thoughts on “Richard in Berlin Station spam

  1. Thank you for the massive picture present. (I hesitate to call it ‘spam’ – pictures of RA are *always* appreciated, and you caught some great ones there.)
    You have pretty much summed up the whole show exactly the way I see it, too. It’s unfortunate that the lead character is getting short shrift, and that the story line is overloaded. Like many other fans, I also only kept at it because RA was in it, and it is always a pleasure seeing him act. In that sense, I’ll watch the third season, too. But I don’t really have high hopes for a better storyline for Daniel Miller…

    Liked by 4 people

    1. My pleasure sending all those pics. Yeah, I wouldn’t call it spam either, I guess. 😉
      About story being overloaded – I forgot to mention that the whole story could have been told in half the amount of episodes.
      Yeah, I will watch season 3 as well. Should Daniel get killed off quickly, then I’m out…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Finally, I can look at all the pretty pictures now that I’m on my laptop. I tried to open it several times on my iPhone today at work but the sheer of the pictures crashed the app every time! Lol. Who knew that too much Richard can crash the WordPress app!

    I am also not a huge spy story fan, which is unfortunate since he seems to do a lot of them, including audiobooks. Oh well. Thanks for the pics.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jane Denton

    Great blog and I’ve been gorging on the pics! I agree strongly about the ill-placed sympathy for the far- right characters, particularly Ganz.
    (Spoiler here) I’ve been re-watching it recently and realised that, apart from the sad faces of the recurring characters when he is shot, the heightened maudlin music plays its part in trying to manipulate us to care

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Welcome and thanks for commenting!
      Hector’s description of Lena as ‘Baby Hitler’ made me grin and I agreed with him. Sympathy for her I could slightly understand in the ‘she’s so young, she has so much to learn’ sense. It was interesting to understand a bit where Otto was coming from but to go so far as feel sympathy for a terrorist, yes, that baffled me

      Like

  4. Servetus

    Another serious peeve of mine: the dialogues between Esther and Daniel don’t really make much sense — it’s like they are not even talking to each other at times. I hope Armitage’s departure from Budapest means he’s finished with the show after season 3.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. These pics are excellent and I like your summary style concise and clairvoyant..(ie Valerie gets the chief station spot) For me as I “discovered” Richard as Daniel Miller I invested heavily in the series. I like spy stuff and even more with watching Spooks. Lucas North grew on me (also thanks to some heavy campaigning). Maybe b/c Daniel’s background and mine are similar except I’m not a CIA agent I felt an affinity with the character. I get if Richard wants to bail from the show. If he wants to do other things, I just hope he does besides this audio and podcast stuff. The Audio overwhelms me and the podcast underwhelms me. I’m in the BS minority. I’m stopped campaigning for it. But I do hope once it airs and you see it (I don’t know how that works in Netherlands) you will write a blog post similar to this one. I could have used this during S2.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah I’m not on the Audio bandwagon in fact it is a little overwhelming the volume of work his elegant voice is spitting out now and the podcast Wolverine. Let’s just say I don’t have ADD but the podcast would drive me to have ADD. I like hearing his voice in the documentaries so I would like to view a bit more of those in his catalog. “The Great Sperm Race” was the most bizarre but unique documentary I’ve ever seen and his pronunciation of some of our female body parts was well er I didn’t need to hear Wanderlust to have a good time..

        Like

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