TV hit “Der Bergdoktor”: That’s what makes him so popular

  •  The  ZDF hit “Der Bergdoktor” returns with the 14th season.
  • ©

     The  series has celebrated record ratings since it was launched.

  • But why is that actually? We investigate what makes the “Bergdoktor” so successful.

A criticism

of Felix Reek

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 The re are people who say they look “©

 The  mountain doctor“only because of the mountains. Which is not so absurd. ©

 The  Backdrop of the Wild Emperor in Tyrol, where ZDF and ORF are filming, among other things, plays at least as big a role as the Gruber family, who have remained in the same line-up over the years.

This is the case again in the first episode of the new season. ©

 The re sit the mountain doctor Martin Gruber (Hans Sigl) and Anne Meierling (Ines Lutz) on a bench. He says: “It’s amazing. We haven’t fought for four months.” It was the big happy ending of last season, after endless back and forth, the two finally found each other and got engaged.


 The n they look ahead and the camera leaves a lot of space for the Tyrolean mountain backdrop. At the very bottom on the right edge the two main characters disappear. What are some people’s problems in the face of this nature?

Perhaps this is one of the secrets why the “Bergdoktor” has remained so successful over the years. ©

 The  last episode of the previous season ended with a market share of 22 percent, almost seven million people watched. ©

 The  winter special last week came to 20 percent. Today only football or the jungle camp create such values. And “Der Bergdoktor”, constant since 2008.

First “Der Bergdoktor” ran on Sat.1


 The  figure of Martin Gruber is much older. ©

 The  Bastei publishing house has been publishing the series of the same name since 1980, and thousands of episodes have appeared. ©

 The  first television adaptation ran between 1992 and 1997 on Sat.1 and gave the station dream ratings. ©

 The  Bergdoktor was only playing then Gerhard Lippert and then Harald Krassnitzer. Today’s main actor Hans Sigl was in a guest role in one episode – he played a taxi driver.

When Sat.1 ended the series despite excellent ratings because the Heimatfilm backdrop allegedly did not fit the desired youthful image, ten years later the ZDF took over the series – and Hans Sigl became the new mountain doctor.

Sat.1 should still regret that today. No program of the private broadcaster comes close to the market shares of today’s “Bergdoktor”. And the allegedly so old ZDF is above average even among the audience of 14 to 49 year olds.


 The  doctor who is always there for the patient


 The  mountain doctor embodied by Hans Sigl is also in the 14th season a Doctor with flaws and flaws. In the first episode entitled “Made of Courage”, he grimaces and stutters when his fiancée reveals that she wants children. To later his mother Lisbeth Gruber (Monika Baumgartner) to confide that he is simply afraid of not being a good father. Of course in front of a magnificent mountain backdrop at night.

At the same time he is that Doctor that many want. ©

 The  opening sequence is about a wife standing between two men. ©

 The  lover breaks down on the top of a mountain (of course!) At the exact moment when she wants to end the relationship.

In real life, he would just end up on a hospital hold or have a two-minute audience with a family doctor. ©

 The  Bergdoktor, on the other hand, goes through the full program: examination of all organs, the laboratory results are available on the same day, the car is chauffeured to the door of the practice and he also covers the wife’s affair.

It has little to do with realism. Straight there is a lack of doctors in rural areas, the health system was economically viable and the hospital staff is scarce and permanently overloaded. But just the idea that there could be someone like the Bergdoktor out there is calming.


 The  alternative to the “crime scene”

At the same time, the production of ZDF and ORF is something like that Counter-draft to the “crime scene” in the ARD. While there is experimentation, with sometimes more, sometimes less satisfactory results, “Der Bergdoktor” is a classic television format: Each episode has a story with a clear frame, beautiful panoramic images, a “good guy” in the lead role and usually a happy ending.

Not a format for the features section, but for families and for escapism“as Hans Sigl once summarized it in the” Süddeutsche Zeitung “.

But that doesn’t mean that current social issues don’t find a place in the “Bergdoktor”. Sometimes it’s about euthanasia, sometimes about suicide and in one episode Gruber took on a transgender girl.

That even convinced Alice Schwarzer, who called the “Bergdoktor” in the “Bunte” “a really good entertainment series” in which feminism had arrived. ©

 The  men are thoughtful and try to combine work with family and “the women like to have a younger lover. It’s good, isn’t it?” That’s actually true.

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