Episode 1
Season 1, Episode 1
Episode 1 SS 001
Air date 29 January 2015
Written by Simon Donald
Directed by Sam Miller
Episode Guide
Season 1 Episode 2

Season 1 Episode 1 is the first episode in series 1 of British psychological thriller Fortitude, and the first episode overall. It originally aired on Sky Atlantic on 29 January 2015.


[1] Outside the town of Fortitude, photographer Henry Tyson hears screaming and finds a bear eating a man alive. He attempts to shoot the bear, but accidentally kills the man instead due to his shaking hands. Sheriff Dan Anderssen drives up and tells him to go home, saying he will deal with it.

Three months later, Liam Sutter and Carrie Morgan discover a mummified mammoth while walking. Carrie pulls a tooth from its mouth, and the children return home. Liam walks into his house and faints. Sheriff Anderssen and Frank Sutter, Liam's father, return after rescuing several people who got stuck in the ice. A police officer hands Anderssen a letter for Henry Tyson.

Frank and Jules Sutter worry about Liam, who won't wake up. Vincent Rattrey arrives in Fortitude and is picked up by Professor Charles Stoddart. They speak about aberrant behavior, including cannibalism that has been observed in polar bears. Stoddart tells Rattrey that they have just come out of the dark months. He invites Rattrey and Natalie Yelburton to dinner on Friday night, saying he'll have finished his report on the environmental impact of tourist development. Carrie Morgan is watching TV when her father returns home. She tells him Liam is sick. He sees the tooth and asks her where she found it. Doctor Margaret Allerdyce asks Jules if her husband served in Afghanistan. She replies that he did, and that his last tour was February. She tells Allerdyce that Liam has not woken up. Allerdyce says Liam has the mumps, and should have someone remain with him at all times. Ronnie Morgan and Jason Donnelly find the mammoth. Morgan suggests selling it to the research center to provide for themselves once the mines close. Governor Hildur Odegard and Sheriff Anderssen look over a model of the proposed ice hotel. Hildur tells Anderssen he should make peace with Henry, who has to leave Fortitude due to being near death. Doctor Allerdyce tells them she thinks Liam has the mumps, but there is a slight chance he has polio instead, which would require quarantining the town. Morgan and Jason bring the mammoth to a warehouse. Frank and Elena Ledesma kiss in a car. Elena tells Frank that there are monsters in Fortitude. Rattrey enters the research center, where Natalie is cutting up a deer. Professor Charlie Stoddart is approached by Jason Donnelly and shown the tooth. Jason says he'll only give the mammoth to the research center if he's given money. Sheriff Anderssen speaks to Elena Ledesma about an incident. Hildur Odegard visits her husband, Eric, in the hospital, where he is recovering from an injury to his leg from a bear trap. She tells him an ice drill is en route from Oslo, and will arrive on Wednesday.

While Hildur practices her speech, Anderssen and Frank Sutter fly over the ice. They confront Yuri Lubimov and Max Cordero about not carrying hunting rifles. The men claim that they don't need them because they are heading inland and polar bears are coastal predators. Anderssen shows them photographs of Billy Pettigrew's corpse. He takes the keys for their snowmobiles and Yuri's handgun, gives them his rifle, and tells them to walk back to town. After he and Frank leave, one of the men mentions having put a cop in the hospital. Vincent Rattrey enters the sauna, but leaves when others come in and slips, hurting his head.

In the pub, Yelburton tells Rattrey they have no crime in Fortitude, so no one knows whether or not Anderssen is a good sheriff. Anderssen meets with Henry, who is drunk and obsessed with Pettigrew's death. Henry tells Anderssen he knows he was already there and that he knows he hid the bullet Henry shot Pettigrew with. Stoddard asks Eric about Jason, saying that the mammoth needs to be located and protected. Ronnie asks Jason what they should do next. Jason tells him he'll take care of it. Jules Sutter tells Anderssen she thinks Doctor Allerdyce misdiagnosed Liam. Anderssen says that if he doesn't wake by the next morning, he'll have Liam airlifted. He introduces Jules to Elena. Professor Charles Stoddart tells Governor Hildur Odegard that he will not release his report, which would allow a hotel to be built into the nearby glacier. He does not tell her what was found.

Professor Stoddart returns home with his dog, who starts whimpering and barking. Frank and Jules Sutter have a row after Jules reveals she has asked for her son to be taken to the mainland hospital, because she believes her son's illness to be something far more than mumps as first thought by Dr. Allerdyce (who Jules has said she doesn't trust). Frank is clearly not happy at this, and he and Jules argue; soon after Jules takes off in her car, leaving Frank to tend to Liam. Vincent Rattrey sees the Northern Lights for the first time, and tells Natalie Yelburton his research was on badgers. Elena Ledesma turns up at the Sutter house and Frank leaves with her, while Jules heads for the bar. Frank and Elena have sex. Liam Sutter wakes up, opens up his bedroom window, and climbs out onto the snow barefoot.

Later, Frank Sutter returns home covered in blood. He throws his shirt away and finishes cleaning up just before Jules walks in. She finds Liam awake and talking and saying he is hungry, much to the relief of his parents. Sheriff Anderssen goes to hotel to visit Elena Ledesma, but changes his mind. Unbeknownst to him, she was pointing a hunting rifle at the door. Jules Sutter tells Frank that she is worried about their relationship. Suddenly Liam starts screaming. When the covers are pulled back, his feet are blackened. Frank yells for Jules to get the car keys. Hildur Odegard tells Sheriff Anderssen about what Charles Stoddart told her. Hildur prepares for her speech, while Anderssen leaves. Liam is admitted to the hospital. A staff member explains that Liam has severe frostbite, which may require debridement or amputation. She comments on their poor parenting. Jules confronts Frank in the hospital waiting room while Liam is asleep in his hospital room about having left Liam alone. Frank walks off when she demands to know where he went. Vincent Rattrey arrives at Professor Stoddart's house, but the Professor doesn't answer. He looks through a window, and sees him lying on the ground, covered in blood. Rattrey uses a cinderblock to break the glass door, and finds that Stoddart was eviscerated. When he checks for a pulse, Stoddart's dog attacks him, but is shot by Sheriff Anderssen, who was standing in the room. Rattrey is arrested on suspicion of killing Stoddart.

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