Beartown: Season 1 (2020)

Season 1

Critics Consensus

Acutely observed and coiled with dread, Beartown is an intelligent sports drama that explores how the culture of an insular community can be complicit in a crime.



Critic Ratings: 12


Audience Score

User Ratings: 10

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Air date: Feb 22, 2021

Recently retired pro hockey player Peter Andersson relocates his family to Beartown for a fresh start and on a mission to rejuvenate the struggling community's ice hockey program. But when the elite squad he was promised proves to be anything but, Peter switches his focus to the junior team, aggravating local tensions and reigniting his troubled past with star player Kevin Erdahl's father, Mats. Series premiere.

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Air date: Mar 1, 2021

Peter does everything he can to coach his juniors to a semifinal win with the financial future of the arena at stake. Facing pressure from everyone in town to perform, Kevin turns to the only person who expects nothing from him: Maya. Later, a celebratory evening goes awry after a horrific act of violence occurs.

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Air date: Mar 8, 2021

With the finals rapidly approaching, Peter pushes his team and coaching staff to their limits. Meanwhile, as Maya attempts to work through the assault, Kevin does everything he can to forget. Later, Peter must choose between his family and the big game.

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Air date: Mar 15, 2021

Maya and Kevin provide their statements to the police as the junior team is forced to take on the final without their coach and star player. Meanwhile, news of the allegation threatens to tear Beartown apart, and later, Amat grapples with a loaded offer.

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Air date: Mar 22, 2021

The entire hockey community gathers for an emergency meeting to decide Peter's future with the program. Facing increased hostility from the town and harassment at school, Maya reaches her breaking point. Later, after the police close their investigation, Maya and Kevin square off in a chilling confrontation.

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Beartown: Season 1 Videos

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Tv Season Info

Cast & Crew

Oliver Dufåker
Kevin Erdahl
Tobias Zilliacus
Mats Erdahl
Otto Fahlgren
Benji Ovich
Aliette Opheim
Mira Andersson
Miriam Ingrid
Maya Andersson
Ulf Stenberg
Peter Andersson
Fredrik Backman
Writer (Book)
Antonia Pyk
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News & Interviews for Beartown: Season 1

Critic Reviews for Beartown Season 1

All Critics (12) | Top Critics (6)

Perhaps "Beartown" is too blunt in its execution, too familiar in its narrative arcs, but it's also wise enough to acknowledge those traits are also part of its tragedy.

Feb 23, 2021 | Rating: B | Full Review…

Takes the honesty of Friday Night Lights to an even deeper and much darker level. The five-part drama, based on the 2017 novel by Fredrik Backman, floored me with its realism, as it digs into the people of a struggling community.

Feb 19, 2021 | Full Review…

...the show distinguishes itself much earlier-as a patient portrait of a stiflingly small place with a long memory; an investigation into the perils of masculinity; an icy Scandinavian take on Friday Night Lights...

Feb 26, 2021 | Full Review…

The main cast members are smartly written and deliver powerful, intimate performances that fully communicate the story's complexity.

Feb 23, 2021 | Full Review…

For all its elements of disillusion and despair, it is thrilling, wrenching drama, at times unforgettable, like the best of hockey can be, even while human nature drags it down to the worst of us.

Feb 22, 2021 | Full Review…

It makes no difference in the consistent power of Beartown... that every crucial element of its drama, every crisis, every resolution, is familiar and entirely predictable. There are reasons films like this keep showing up.

Feb 19, 2021 | Full Review…

The chilly HBO adaptation about a small Swedish town and its hockey team examines what happens to a community when its systems are confronted by the chaos they've helped to create.

Apr 2, 2021 | Full Review…

I think I got so hung up on the intimate depictions of these characters and the warmth of Backman's writing that I missed the overarching theme of Beartown so successfully distilled by a five-episode HBO series.

Mar 30, 2021 | Full Review…

The ability to communicate to the audience that there's more at stake than just a hockey game or a season is what will make viewers continue to watch Beartown - though the hockey scenes aren't bad, either.

Feb 24, 2021 | Full Review…

Despite its predatory namesake, Beartown is more like a set of some small creature's footprints in the snow: there and then gone, leaving only the most minor and fleeting impression.

Feb 22, 2021 | Full Review…

By being a sports drama that spends equal time both on the rink and off the rink, the series is able to capture the viewer's attention - and keep it, in a variety of ways.

Feb 22, 2021 | Rating: 7/10 | Full Review…

Beartown works as an athletic drama, too. This ingredient and all others cohere seamlessly, and you're left with a show that transcends noir even as it elevates it.

Feb 22, 2021 | Rating: 9.5/10 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Beartown: Season 1

  • Mar 22, 2021
    It was out of line with the story
  • Mar 21, 2021
    Made me seethe with anger.
  • Mar 16, 2021
    If you have read the book and loved it, this series will just upset you. I started watching it excited to see Beartown come to life, well 20 minutes in there were so many differences I had to turn it off from how annoying it was. Maybe if you haven't read the book it would be worth a watch since in general Scandinavian TV series are some of the best.
  • Mar 11, 2021
    So far, so good. Very bleak. Excellent acting throughout.
  • Mar 02, 2021
    I posted a 2-star review initially but tried again when I was in a quieter slower mood--and like it a lot. It's not a series you can 1/2 watch while doing other things--you do need to focus on it. Not because it's complicated or difficult to follow, but because it is so slow many American's minds will wander and they'll start to multitask and end up missing important nuances. The plot is compelling, characters well-drawn, good acting and direction. So if you are in the mood to wrap yourself in a blanket with a cup of tea to watch a pretty interesting drama in grim gloomy freezing cold dark Sweden you may enjoy Beartown as much as I ultimately did.

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