Vienna Blood (TV series)

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Vienna Blood
A distressed cream colored background to the logotype "Vienna Blood"
Title card
GenrePeriod drama
Detective fiction
Based onThe Liebermann novels by Frank Tallis
Written bySteve Thompson
ComposerRoman Kariolou
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series3
No. of episodes9
  • Steve Thompson
  • Oliver Auspitz
  • Andreas Kamm
  • Jez Swimer
  • Andreas Thalhammer
  • Xiaosu Han
Running time90 minutes
Production companies
  • Endor Productions
  • MR Film
Original release
NetworkBBC Two
Release18 November 2019 (2019-11-18) –

Vienna Blood is a British-Austrian procedural drama television series set in Vienna, Austria, in the early 1900s. Based on the Liebermann novels by Frank Tallis, the series follows Max Liebermann (Matthew Beard), a doctor and student of Sigmund Freud, as he assists Police Detective Oskar Rheinhardt (Juergen Maurer). By providing psychological insights into the subjects’ motives, they investigate disturbing murders with success. A continuing sub-theme is the growing anti-Semitism against the Liebermann family. Max is a member of a liberal Jewish family in Leopoldstadt, a traditional Jewish district, while Oskar, a lapsed Catholic, is based at that district's police precinct.

The first series began broadcasting on BBC Two on 18 November 2019. On 6 July 2020, it was recommissioned for a second series.[1] The programme was renewed for a third series, which began broadcasting on BBC Two on 14 December 2022.[2][3] It has been renewed for a fourth series.[4]






Series overview[edit]

SeriesEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
1318 November 2019 (2019-11-18)2 December 2019 (2019-12-02)
2310 December 2021 (2021-12-10)24 December 2021 (2021-12-24)
3314 December 2022 (2022-12-14)28 December 2022 (2022-12-28)

Series 1 (2019)[edit]

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateU.K. viewers
1"The Last Seance"Robert DornhelmSteve Thompson18 November 2019 (2019-11-18)1.8[6]
When a medium is found dead in mysterious circumstances, Dr Max Liebermann is called upon by Inspector Oskar Rheinhardt of the Vienna Police to assist in finding her murderer.[5]
2"Queen of the Night"Umut DagSteve Thompson25 November 2019 (2019-11-25)N/A
A grisly series of murders in Vienna's slums leads to a speedy arrest, but Oskar and Max disagree over a suspect.[5]
3"The Lost Child"Umut DagSteve Thompson2 December 2019 (2019-12-02)N/A
Max's nephew suffers a breakdown after the drowning of a fellow cadet at a military academy. Max suspects foul play.[5]

Series 2 (2021)[edit]

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date [7]U.K. viewers
1"The Melancholy Countess"Robert DornhelmSteve Thompson10 December 2021 (2021-12-10)N/A
A widowed countess dies in an apparent suicide but later it is found she was murdered. She had consulted Max. Why was she so unhappy?[5]
2"The Devil's Kiss"Robert DornhelmSteve Thompson17 December 2021 (2021-12-17)[a]N/A
A young pickpocket discovers a badly mutilated body which leads Oskar on the trail of an anarchist determined to disrupt the signing of a treaty.[5]
3"Darkness Rising"Robert DornhelmSteve Thompson24 December 2021 (2021-12-24)[b]N/A
Following an altercation at a lecture, a monk is killed. A suspect is arrested, the brother of Clara's fiancé. Max doesn’t think he killed the monk and goes undercover to find out what happened.[5]
  1. ^ "The Devil's Kiss" was released on 10 December 2021, on BBC iPlayer.
  2. ^ "Darkness Rising" was released on 10 December 2021, on BBC iPlayer.

Series 3 (2022)[edit]

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date [7]U.K. viewers
1"Deadly Communion"Robert DornhelmSteve Thompson14 December 2022 (2022-12-14)N/A
A young seamstress is murdered in a luxury fashion house. Oscar and Max are initially perplexed, but further clues are revealed when Max receives a letter at his new practice.[5]
2"The God of Shadows"Robert DornhelmSteve Thompson21 December 2022 (2022-12-21)N/A
Max applies his neurological expertise to the case of a retired soldier, Captain Steiner, who is convinced that he is cursed and tortured by vengeful spirits.[5]
3"Death Is Now a Welcome Guest"Robert DornhelmSteve Thompson28 December 2022 (2022-12-28)N/A
When a famous film star dies during the premiere of her new film, Max and Oskar's investigation gets them embroiled in the dark underbelly of stardom and far-right politics.[5]


The series was a coproduction of Endor Productions and MR Film (Austria).[8]

Each episode consists of two parts[5] but numbering of episodes varies by country. In Austria, episodes are numbered by case (3 episodes per series) but in the USA by part (6 episodes per series).


The first series was filmed on location in Vienna and Lower Austria, beginning in October 2018.[9] Locations included the Vienna State Opera house and Volkstheater, as well as Landstrasse, Hauptstrasse, Herz Jesu church, Votivkirche, St Charles Borromeo Church, Griechengasse, Molker Steig, Schreyvogelgasse, Dreimaderlhaus, Schonlaterngasse, Alte Schmiede, the Vienna University Archive, the Billrothhaus (Vienna 9), the Natural History Museum, Palais Pallavicini, the Burggarten park, the Stadpark, the Arsenal, Otto Wagner Hospital, Villa Mauthner von Markhof, Kirche am Steinhof, the Riesenrad (big wheel), Stephansdom, Sankt-Ulrichs-Platz, Palais Pallavicini, National Library, Zentralfriedhof, Friedhof der Namenlosen, Museum of Military History, Cafe Morgenstern, Café Sperl and Café Bräunerhof and features the Beethovenfries. In Lower Austria the Schloss Grafenegg appears.[10][11]

Series 2 was also filmed in Vienna and Lower Austria, featuring such locations as Hotel Imperial, the Stadtpark, Kursalon Hübner, Schönbrunn Palace, the Museum of Military History, Traungasse, Lagergasse, Buchfeldgasse, Florianigasse, Schulhof, Kirche am Hof, Franziskanerkirche, Michaelerkirche, Palais Collalto, Kartäuse Mauerbach (monastery) and the Franzensburg in Lower Austria.[10]

Filming of Series 3 was split between Budapest (including the Párisi Udvar Hotel and the Vígszínház Theatre, Bedo House, Postal Museum, the National Museum of Hungary and the Hazai Bank) and Vienna (including the Loos House, Belvedere, Dr Ignaz Seipel Platz, Jesuitengasse, Michaelerplatz and the Hofburg).[10][12][13]


The first series of three 90-minute episodes was broadcast in the United Kingdom on BBC Two between 18 November and 2 December 2019.[14] Austrian channel ORF 2 aired the show beginning 20 December 2019 with dubbing.[15][16]

In the United States, PBS showed the series in six 45-minute episodes; broadcast began on 19 January 2020.[17][18]


Vienna Blood received a 53% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with the ‘Critics Consensus’ reading, 'Though it rarely rises above 'watchable', fans of period crime series may enjoy passing time with Vienna Blood's charismatic cast anyway.'[19] The Guardian's Emine Saner, giving three out of five stars to the first episode, remarked that the series was similar to Thompson's prior work on Sherlock, particularly in its leads' dynamic and the presentation. However she did praise the two lead actors.[20] Sean O'Grady of The Independent gave it five out of five stars, praising the direction, recreation of the period and storytelling.[21]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "'Vienna Blood' Gets Season 2 Order". The Hollywood Reporter. 6 July 2020. Retrieved 7 July 2020.
  2. ^ "Period Crime Drama 'Vienna Blood' Gets Season 3 Order". The Hollywood Reporter. 22 February 2022.
  3. ^ Nisbet, Megan (14 December 2022). "BBC Vienna Blood cast list, locations and how many episodes in series 3". WalesOnline.
  4. ^
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j PBS 2022.
  6. ^ "Vienna Blood scores high ratings on BBC Two in the UK". Red Arrow Studios. 19 November 2019. Retrieved 10 December 2019.
  7. ^ a b "Vienna Blood - BBC Two". BBC. Retrieved 14 December 2022.
  8. ^ "BBC Two acquires major new crime series Vienna Blood".
  9. ^ "Endor Productions, MR Film and Red Arrow Studios International announce major new drama Series "Vienna Blood"" (PDF).
  10. ^ a b c Brownlow 2023.
  11. ^ Martin 2020.
  12. ^ BBC 2022.
  13. ^ Kamble 2023.
  14. ^ "When is Vienna Blood on TV? Cast, plot and review for BBC Two drama". Radio Times.
  15. ^ "Internationaler ORF-Krimievent "Vienna Blood – Die letzte Séance" -".
  16. ^ ""Vienna Blood – Die letzte Séance" als deutschsprachige Free-TV-Premiere -". (in German). Retrieved 9 January 2020.
  17. ^ "PBS gets taste for Vienna Blood". C21media.
  18. ^ "Vienna Blood | PBS". Retrieved 9 January 2020.
  19. ^ "Vienna Blood". Rotten Tomatoes.
  20. ^ "Vienna Blood review – so much like Sherlock it seems like a spoof". 18 November 2019.
  21. ^ "Vienna Blood is as rich and textured as the finest apple strudel – review". 19 November 2019. Archived from the original on 17 August 2022.