Latest Issue

Kim Wall’s death isn’t a “Scandi noir” drama—the media needs to stop treating it as one

Media outlets have repeatedly compared her disappearance to Scandi crime drama. But Wall was a real, three-dimensional woman—and her death isn't entertainment

By Jane Merrick  

Divers from the Danish Defence Command search the water around Copenhagen. Photo: PA

Kim Wall was a talented, versatile and respected journalist, with bylines in the Guardian, the New York Times and Harpers as well as publications in her native Sweden. Yet since her disappearance earlier this month and the discovery of her remains in the Baltic Sea off Denmark this week, she has been treated by the media as a character in a grisly-yet-stylish Nordic noir.

It is not unusual for a missing person case to be described as…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect