“Tatort” today from Dortmund: This is how Rick Okon says goodbye to the crime series

Crime thriller from Dortmund
Rapid departure of a quiet inspector: The emotional “crime scene” farewell to Rick Okon

Inspector Jan Pawlak (Rick Okon) leaves the Dortmund “crime scene”

© WDR/Bavaria Fiction GmbH/Thomas Kost

Rick Okon played Dortmund “Tatort” detective Jan Pawlak for six years. His family problems shaped the crime series – and are now also the reason for his departure.

In the end there are six words. Six words from Dortmund “Tatort” Commissioner Rosa Herzog (Stefanie Reinsperger) about the future of her colleague Jan Pawlak (Rick Okon) decide. He pours his heart out to Rosa over a beer. “They’re taking my daughter away from me for good,” says Pawlak. The eternal argument about his daughter Mia threatens to escalate after the investigator was reported by his mother-in-law. She has custody of the girl; Pawlak is only allowed to see her under the supervision of the youth welfare office. An unbearable situation for the commissioner.

“Tatort” from Dortmund: Commissioner Jan Pawlak flees with his daughter

Then his colleague Rosa Herzog says the decisive sentence: “But you won’t allow that.” At this moment it is clear to everyone – Pawlak, Herzog and the spectators – that the commissioner will leave Dortmund. In a scene earlier, Mia had asked her father, “Can’t we run away?” and Pawlak actually drives to his daughter’s house at the end of the film. She has to decide: Will she get in the car with her father or will she stay with her grandma? The girl runs to the car and Pawlak races away – towards Seville. There he wants to look for his wife Ella, Mia’s mother.

The audience will no longer find out whether the inspector’s adventurous escape succeeds. The “Crime Scene: Cash” was the last case for the investigator, who joined the team led by Inspector Peter Faber (Jörg Hartmann) in 2018. Actor Rick Okon is leaving the crime series at his own request. “It’s not easy for me to leave, because ‘Pawlak’ has grown very close to my heart and has accompanied me intensively over the last six years. But now the time has come for me to go new ways,” said the 34-year-old, when his exit was announced in December last year.

Rick Okon celebrated his “Tatort” debut in February 2018 with the “Rabies” case, in which he appeared as an undercover investigator. Fittingly, he was seen again as an undercover detective in his last film. His character of Jan Pawlak remained more of a quiet investigator in the background for 13 episodes. What was particularly present were his private problems with his drug-addicted wife Ella and their daughter Mia. It’s good that this narrative thread is now coming to an end.

At the same time, Pawlak’s departure creates a new dynamic in the Dortmund team: after the departures of Anna Schudt, Aylin Tezel and Daniel Konarkse, Jörg Hartmann is the only one left from the original line-up. Inspector Peter Faber, who he plays – a guy who always oscillates between cynicism and anger – is what makes the Dortmund “crime scene” so charming. With Stefanie Reinsperger, who has been working as investigator Rosa Herzog since 2021, he has a new partner at eye level. And two strong inspectors are enough for the Dortmund “crime scene”.

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