Let’s talk about: Skam *Cries in Norwegian* 

I’ve been meaning to talk about this show since the first time i watched it a few months ago, but by the time i got to do it, it was announced the final season was about to begin so i decided on waiting until the very end before i talk about it.

Well, guess what? This weekend the show officially ended and now i get to share with you a complete opinion on it.

Back at the beginning of the year. When i was watching show after show after show i was starting to lose faith on finding the show … You know the one you love so much you really watch and not just binge watch? Well, as i said i was losing my hope when i accidentally saw some curious gifsets on Tumblr. Now Tumblr is the perfect place to get tv shows, books, movies recommendations… Because of Tumblr, i started watching Doctor Who, all the Netflix original shows, Merlí and much more… But i’m going off track here.

As i said, i saw some gifsets and i got really curious what were they about. It turned out they were about some Norwegian tv show, many were obsessing about; the show is called Skam (Shame in English) and it is thw mother of all teenage tv shows.

If you really want to understand the teenage experience, i know we all had a teenagehood but like, if you are interested in seeing all aspects of it, Skam is the show to watch.

Yes it’s in Norwegian, but that’s not an excuse (my sister already tried that on me).

Skam is the epitome of what it means to be young.

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Created by Julie Andem for NRK (the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation) as a way of getting younger viewers to their website and on a low budget, this series has surpassed all ratings in Norwegian tv’s history.

Conceived as a day to day kind of experience, Skam shows the daily life of the main character, who changes with each season, and it gives updates about what the main is doing either by dropping a clip, an Instagram update or texts that are posted on the official website Skam.p3.no.

Yes, the main way of enjoy the show is by following all kinds of social media the characters have, giving the impression these characters are real living teenagers. They interact in social media with each other and even break the fourth wall a few times.

As the show wants to talk to a young audience, it takes on topics many teenagers deal with in a daily basis such as; bullying, love, self-respect, abuse, sexual assault, homosexuality, mental health, eating disorders and religion.

Each season and its main have a different story to tell which includes some of the topics above, how they deal with their problems and how they grow by learning from the mistakes they make and the interactions with their pairs.

All these stories are set in a real Oslo high school, Harvig Nissen, and many of the actors play characters their real age. Now i know this may not be ask important, but … It’s kind of refreshing to watch because these kids really look the age they are supposed to be, you see they are teenagers and not twenty-somethings playing characters too young to really believe tey are that age. I’m not saying there aren’t twenty-somethings playing teenagers in Skam,  i just say they look more believable.

The show ran from 2015-2017 and had 4 seasons; Eva (Lisa Teige), Noora (Josefine Frida Petersen), Isak (Tarjei Sandvik Moe) and Sana (Iman Meskini). The original idea was to have all five girls of the “Girl Squad”  (Eva, Noora, Sana, Vilde and Chris) and (as i just read aparently) four out of five of the “Boys Squad” (Isak, Jonas, Even and Magnus) to have a season, or at least their story developed properly… (key word here being properly).

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Our Four Mains (Eva, Noora, Isak and Sana)

Sadly enough the show was cut short, according to the creator and writer because the show is a 24/7 job that became very difficult to handle after the success of season three (particularly) worldwide, since she wanted to keep everyone on their toes and it became more and more difficult to do so as the story developed.

The thing with Skam is the devotion it brought to so many people. Skam has not only teenage viewers but older too and from everywhere. People from all over the world started traveling to Norway just to meet the cast and they became international sensations (especially the actors Tarjei Sandvik Moe and Henrik Holm) and this is, in my opinion, other of the reasons the show has come to an end… It was never supposed to become this big, it became too overwhelming and so now it’s over.
Many fans of the show were very disappointed by it, since it meant some of the most wanted characters won’t get their own season. This even though you can see they have such important stories to be told.

The show is full of heart.

Most topics are handled very carefully, and i say most because at least one of them, in the end, was treated very poorly and it ruined so much, in my opinion, it’s incredible. The actors have very little make-up on to cover the imperfections of the age, which is, in my opinion, a really smart move… we are really tired of the perfect faces of the so perfect American actors in all those American TV dramas.

There are many little details to enjoy while watching the show, for example, the actors have very little make-up on to cover the imperfections of the age, which is, in my opinion, a really smart move… we are really tired of the perfect faces of the so perfect American actors in all those American TV dramas. Also, there are little hints of the things you should be looking forward to, references to media, and life in general.

I think that’s enough of an introduction right? should we get to my opinion on the show?

Let’s get this over with…

Skam is a great show.

Okay, that statement doesn’t make the show justice but it just is.

 

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The Girl Squad (from left to right Eva, Vilde Chris, Sana and Noora)

Skam is the truest representation of the lives of young people, forget American Tv dramas, this is the real shit. You’ll see all kind of people in the show, all of them young from the girl that lost all her friends because of a bad decision to the gay dude that suffers from internalized homophobia to the religious kid that studies science.

 

Skam represents all of us. I don’t think it’s possible not to find yourself in at least one of the characters.

The main problem i find in the show is the weird obsession the writer had through all seasons with a specific ship that many couldn’t even stand (myself included) but she kept feeding us it. Seriously, it became ridiculous particularly in the last season, because it seemed that the ship was more important than the main character of the season.

The thing with the show is, it became internationally famous mostly because of season three. If you go looking on the internet, or at least on the Tumblrs i follow, many call the season a ‘masterpiece’ and to be honest it is outstanding in comparison of the rest of the of the seasons, one of the scenes of season three even won a Gullruten (Norwegian prize) for best scene of 2016. Also, the main couple of the season won international polls as best couple and blah, blah.

 

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The Boy Squad (from left to right Magnus, Isak, Mahdi and Jonas)

But, as good as season three was, there were some weak and annoying others. For example, many concede in the fact that season two, was very dull and boring, but it was the longest one. Not to mention problematic season four.

 

Season four was supposed to be an eye opener about Islam, being the main character Muslimah herself. But it failed its purpose because of some kind of sloppy writing and because it managed to neglect the main character in favor of fanservice (yes, that is my opinion on the Evak topic) and the mythical ship (not many cared about).

But, as i’m sitting here writing this and watching the farewell event of the show, all i can really feel for the show is an immense love. Because the show made me feel so many things, it made me smile and cry so much, it made *makes* me so happy, the actors are such a joy to follow on social media, they are so much fun.

I find it really sad that the show is over, mostly because it’s so rare that we get to know actors from such unexpected countries, but i got so attached to them, how am i gonna follow their careers from now on??

Even if the last season wasn’t the best, it was pretty good (especially in the beginning)

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The Balloon Squad, the last and great addition to the show (from left to right; Mutasim, Mikael, Elias, Adam and Yousef)

and i can be nothing but thankful to Julie Andem for the show she made, with all the pressure and the 24/7 work they had to pull for it. It is an amazing experience, and the best teenage show i’ve ever watched. No wonder it blew up out of proportion, it is so relatable even at my age.

 

I think all i’m left to say is, you should watch this show, even though it’s over and the waiting it’s not a factor anymore… binge watch it, if you can find all the media and enjoy the full experience… but even if you can’t find all the stuff, the episodes themselves are enough… it’s amazing.

Oh, and watch it before the american version sees the light, because we don’t know how it may end up…

 

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Skam♥You

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5 thoughts on “Let’s talk about: Skam *Cries in Norwegian* 

  1. Really good post 😀 I’m Norwegian myself and watched the show before it got ^^popular^^. Everybody from the age of early teens to people that are 60+ are watching and loving the show. 🙂

  2. I found out about the show back in the fall on a chance. I went on Tumblr and found out. I love each of the characters. I do wish that Season 4 would be better than what we have got. There were great and sweet moments but they are rare. I do wish there are more seasons because there were unfinished stories. I would love to get know Even, Chris, Vilde, Magnus, and Jonas. Thanks to SKAM, I am learning Norwegian slowly. It’s an awesome language. I have heard that the United States got rights to produce the show similar to SKAM and they are set to film at some point this year.

  3. Okay I love Skam and think it’s damn near perfect. But am I the only one pissed we didn’t get a Vilde or Chris season. Like it started with the girl gang and even though I love Isak and Even I really needed more girl gang seasons. *cries* Everyone should watch this show though

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