Deutschland 83 has been this year’s most surprising Foreign Language hit TV series! Aired on Sundance Channel, #Deutschland83 follows a young East German soldier during 1983 as he navigates his way around West Germany and International Espionage. The first season began airing in June and fans are already wondering if there will be a second season of this popular show.
Offering a different perspective than we’re used to of international espionage, @Deutschland83 follows the young ingénue Martin Rauch (Jonas Nay) as he is selected (without his consent) and trained for the role of a spy, reporting on secrets concerning NATO military strategies.
But for a suspense drama, @Deutschland83 has some wonderfully fun, humorous elements and a great 1980’s soundtrack, which all offer a break from the otherwise tense premise. Amongst the majority of viewers of Season 1 who have become followers of the show, Deutschland has attracted some younger viewers who are drawn to the Pop of the 1980’s as well as the young German eye candy.
The soundtrack serves a unifying process and serves to prove that music exists beyond borders. Audiences listen to Bowie’s ‘Modern Love’, released in 1983 and remember where they were when it came out. While music transcends borders, it also transcends language and serves as a point where opposing sides converge. For this reason the Poppy soundtrack actually plays a crucial part in the show.
Some reviewers have commented on how Deutschland is an unlikely success and yet those that tune in out of curiosity become addicted right away.
Germany during the Cold War sounds like a dull and depressing place on which to base an espionage drama. What is so surprising is how interested viewers are in taking an inside look into a side that they are aware will slowly lose the race and yet often find themselves identifying with some of the characters.
There is no way around it, the creators of the show have stumbled upon a story that viewers didn’t realize that they wanted to be told. Now the question remains, will #Deutschland83 provoke more TV shows based in 1980’s Germany? Or behind the Iron Curtain?
‘The Americans’, a series about a pair of Russian spies that have completely assimilated to American culture, and navigate it from within, may have seen the crest of a wave of interest for these themes. The Cold War still remains a mysterious occurrence, even to the people who lived during the time, perhaps enough time has passed for it to be explored from as objective a place as possible.
Much of the credit for this intriguing premise, that has captured the imagination of millions of viewers per episode, is due to the American writer Anna Winger. It helps that she is married to a German man who provided many insights and personal accounts into the German side of the Cold War. In a recent interview Joeg Winger, Anna’s husband, stated that the script is “…inspired by true stories, the historical backdrop of events we’re telling are all true. We’ve basically created a set of fictional characters that are dealing with real events in the year 1983.” He continued by exclaiming that Deutschland 83 “is the first time that a German language series is
Possibly the most surprising thing about one of this Summer’s most popular series’ is that it is a Foreign Language film with English subtitles, which in the past has put off many viewers. As Deutschland increases in ratings and popularity with every episode aired, the chances of a second season are looking better and better.
Will you be brushing up on your German when you watch the remaining episodes of Deutschland 83?