Netflix’s thrilling Polish crime show ‘Detective Forst’ follows the story of the titular character, a police officer from Zakopane, as he investigates a string of gruesome murders along the Tatra Mountains. However, Wicktor Forst’s tendency to play by his own rules lands the cop in some hot waters with the department, leading to an unlikely partnership with a reckless journalist, Olga Szrebska. Together, as the duo look into the murders, they uncover a greater conspiracy and a string of unsolved trauma from Forst’s past. The show’s narrative seamlessly builds a mystery around the unsolved murders plaguing the town. As such, with every new perplexing evidence and backstory, the curiosity around the killer’s identity and motives builds, while the viewers are left to wonder about the protagonists’ predicament. SPOILERS AHEAD!
Detective Forst Plot Recap
Edmund Osica, Zakopane’s Police Chief, receives word about a dead body discovered hung from a cross tower in the Tantra Mountains. Upon arriving at the scene with his team, Osica assigns the case to Wicktor Forst, a seasoned transfer cop from Kraków. Even though Osica has a strained relationship with the other man, partly due to Forst’s casual relationship with the chief’s daughter, Agata, Osica can tell Forst’s instincts would be best for the job. Forst proves the same by quickly recovering the first piece of evidence, an old coin stuffed in the victim’s throat.
However, Osica’s boss remains displeased with Forst’s lead because of his lack of protocol and reckless interaction with the media, wherein he told a journalist, Olga Szrebska, that the death was a suicide. For his part, Forst defends his decision, claiming that denying the murderer attention is the best strategy. Yet, the odds tip out of his favor when another dead body is found, similarly contorted in the nude with a coin in its throat. Thus, after catching Forst conversing with Olga again, Osica takes him off the serial killer’s case.
Nonetheless, despite his assignment on another case, a Minster’s troublesome missing kid with a penchant for disappearing and returning on his own, Forst decides to continue working on the murders. Furthermore, he convinces Olga to strike up a partnership with him. Thus, the duo meets with Forst’s contact, Staszek, a sleuthing researcher, to learn more about the coins and the victims.
Over the next day, Forst and Olga continue to work together, snatching information from whatever source possible. As a result, they come across an old photograph depicting Nazi collaborators lynching people. Likewise, Olga’s rigged-up radio informs them about the discovery of yet another dead body by the river. Still, Forst fails to discover anything more about the body other than its decapitated state with a missing head before Osica catches him and suspends him on the spot.
Naturally, Forst continues to work the case alongside Olga, insisting that his suspension proves that an influential network is behind the killings since his indiscretions hardly invited such a punishment without outside pressure. For the same reason, Forst sneaks into the station to get files on the victims while Olga does some sleuthing of her own and learns about a spot in Slovakia mountains with a possible connection to the first murder.
Moreover, with the file’s help, Forst and Olga realize that all the victims are descendants of the Nazi collaborators from the photograph. As a result, Forst embarks on a solo journey to Slovakia, where a contact, Frana, helps him sneak into the powerful criminal mastermind Leon Lowatarski’s fortified villa. However, shortly after their venture into the establishment, a business for sadistic pleasures, Forst and Frana get caught.
Consequently, Forst has a confrontation with Leon, where the latter reveals that he isn’t the one behind the elusive killer. Instead, he’s the last target. Leon is one of the Nazi collaborators in the photograph. Nonetheless, unlike the others, he never had a kid. For the same reason, the killer will be coming after him directly. In the end, the killer comes for Leon. Yet, before dying, the criminal shares the shocking truth that the killer’s employer, Halina, is actually related to him. Still, Leon dies while Forst manages to escape with his life after the killer establishes his intention to make the detective suffer before allowing his death.
Eventually, Forst returns home to Olga, and the duo attempt to learn more about the photograph. After visiting a museum, they learn about Halina, the daughter of the woman in the photograph. The woman was one of the Nazi Collaborators’ many abuse victims and the only one to survive. Upon the mention of Halina’s full maiden name, Halina Krol, Forst has a shocking realization that his childhood orphanage director is actually at the center of these killings. As a result, Forst and Olga end up at Halina’s lair, where they learn several damning truths.
Detective Forst Ending: Who Is The Killer? What Is His Motive?
As the movie opens with the inhumane torture of a victim, followed closely by the discovery of the first dead body, the narrative establishes the mystery behind the elusive killer from the start. The killer, known as the Beast of Giewont— after the location of his first kill, drops bodies one after the other in quick succession. Furthermore, he marks all his targets with a coin shoved in the back of their throats as if tagging his kills in true serial killer fashion. Therefore, Forst concludes early that the killer is seeking attention.
Nevertheless, it isn’t until Forst confronts Halina that the detective realizes the tags have been a cry for his attention specifically. Despite his presence in the town due to a reprimandary transfer, Forst originally grew up in Zakopane at the local orphanage. Halina Krol owned the establishment as the head director and ran quite the tight ship. One day, young Forst’s curiosity got the better of him, leading him to sneak into the woman’s office to peek at one of her signature necklaces, an old coin on a chain.
However, before Halina could catch Forst, his best friend, Iwo Elijah, took the fall for him. As a result, Iwo was branded a common thief, receiving beatings for his alleged crime. Inversely, Forst watched his best friend suffer in silence but never revealed the truth. Worse yet, eventually, The Forst family came to the orphanage for adoption and took Iwo’s friend with them. While they had considered taking Iwo along, his thieving past made them change their minds.
As such, Forst essentially robbed Iwo of a good life and condemned him to a life of pain and hurt even though the boy put his neck on the line for him. For the same reason, Halina was able to groom Iwo and turn him into a lethal killer to carry out her vengeful plans. Halina’s mother, Miroslawa, was abused in her childhood and left for a cruel fate after she fell pregnant at Leon’s hands. Therefore, Halina grew up harboring revenge-filled sentiments about the Nazi collaborators who abused her mother and numerous others like her.
Consequently, Halina sent Iwo out to kill her mother’s abusers and their descendants to wipe the slate clean. In turn, she allowed him to leave his cryptic messages to Forst through coin tagging to gain his attention. Nevertheless, in the end, Iwo turns his gun on Haline herself, having discovered that the woman is Leon’s daughter. As it would turn out, Iwo was never particularly interested in carrying out Halina’s mission. Instead, he had been waiting for an opportunity to exact revenge upon Forst, who betrayed him and ruined his life.
As such, after a violent altercation, Iwo attempts to kill Forst and the woman he deeply cares for, Olga, by leaving them trapped inside the burning building. Although Forst manages to escape the dire circumstances with Olga alive, he soon realizes Iwo will target people close to him next, namely Agata.
Does Agata Die?
Once Iwo Elijah, the infamous Beast of Giewont, completes his mission as a serial killer for Halina, he embarks on the journey to carry out his own personal vendetta. Iwo blames Forst for his traumatic childhood and wants to see the other man suffer. In order to do so, Iwo plans to take everything that Forst cares about away from him. For the same reason, the homicidal man ensured the detective saw Frana die on their mission but left Forst alive.
After Forst escapes from the burning building, Iwo sets his sights on another target, Agata. Despite their tumultuous relationship, Agata and Forst genuinely seem to care about each other. Even though Forst may not have romantic feelings for the woman, given his eagerness to jump into bed with others, especially Olga, the man still cares for Agata’s safety. In contrast, Agata seems wholly infatuated with Forst and perpetually frustrated with his lack of commitment to her.
Furthermore, Agata deals with her own issues through substance abuse as she grieves her mother’s cancerous death. Therefore, after she catches the eye of a certain distinguished gentleman, Iwo Elijah, under his alias Gjord, during her diner shift, she allows herself to find a distraction by indulging in a one-night stand with him. Meanwhile, Forst, whose persisting investigation isn’t received well by his boss, Osica, attempts to continue searching for Iwo while running from the law.
Worse yet, since Iwo has used his Gjord alias to build a loving marriage with Prosecutor Dominika Wadrys in the past few years, he uses manipulation tactics to ensure the woman announces Forst as the killer. As a result, the man finds himself combating police search while trying to keep his loved ones safe. Simultaneously, Police Chief Osica receives footage of the killer slicing Agata’s body to send a message.
After his encounter with Agata, Iwo abducted her to be held as bait for Forst. Thus, the cruel video message holds a secret code for Forst to decipher in order to locate Agata and her kidnapper. Olga helps Forst decode the message, and the latter has an epiphany about Agata’s location. In the end, Forst arrives at the building to confront Iwo on his own, leaving a still-injured Olga behind. Nonetheless, by the time Forst arrives, Agata has already passed away, still tied to the single bed in her own blood.
As Forst mourns Agata’s death, Iwo attacks from the shadows, leading to a showdown between the two men. Iwo is ruthless in his blame for Forst and wants to see him suffer. Meanwhile, Forst’s recent loss fuels his feelings of hatred for the other man. While Forst blames himself for the past, despite his young age, he knows that Iwo must be stopped. Given Iwo’s violent streak, even if the man gets his revenge on Forst, he would likely keep going. Therefore, Forst knows he has to kill the man to end his violence.
Ultimately, Forst tackles Iwo out of a second-story window, leaving both men severely injured and unconscious in varying degrees. When the police arrive, they find Forst alive but severely injured and arrest him. On the other hand, Iwo, the actual killer responsible for Agata and the others’ deaths, is nowhere to be seen.
What Happened to Olga? Is She Working With Iwo Elijah?
Even though Forst is arrested in the end, he manages to slip away from the police’s holding and returns to the safe house he left Olga in. Now that Agata is dead and Iwo, still seeking revenge, is on the loose, the detective knows he will go after Olga next.
However, the sight that greets him inside his close friend, Nina’s, safe house remains bleak. While Nina herself is dead on the couch, her body covered in blood, Olga is missing. Thus, as we leave Forst at season one’s end, he has no clue about Olga’s whereabouts and can only imagine that Iwo must have gotten to her. Nevertheless, the viewers are privy to a different truth.
As the show ends, we see Olga driving down a dark road with Iwo, injured and barely alive in her backseat. The season’s final scene leaves the viewers with many questions to look forward to in a potential future season. As of now, the scene can imply a number of things. However, the most likely explanation is that Olga has been working with Iwo the entire time.
Considering Iwo’s brutal condition, it’s unlikely that he could’ve overpowered even Nina and delivered her to her death. As such, Olga probably killed Nina while escaping. Furthermore, she also could’ve removed Iwo from the crime scene while he and Forst were unconscious outside the house. The last piece of evidence comes from Olga’s uncanny ability to always sniff out the dead bodies before even the police due to her mysterious “sources.”
Consequently, it’s possible that Iwo has been Olga’s source all along, and the two were in cahoots from the start. The revelation holds drastic implications for the future, especially due to Forst and Olga’s relationship.
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