This has been on the slate for a while and, if you’re a viewer of BBC Wales, you’ve seen it all before already. In fact, Hinterland is a bit of a strange bird in that not only has it already aired on BBC Wales, reports suggest that it has been made twice – once in Welsh and then another bilingual version. No matter, Hinterland is finally here and we were looking forward to seeing it – it had been building a slow, quiet momentum and we were beginning to get caught up in it. Why? Well, we had heard that this was the kind of Welsh noir that would rival the Nordic Noir genre in its atmosphere and that was good enough for us.
Tonight sees the start of a new, three-part series on ITV. Prey stars John Simm as Detective Sergeant Marcus Farrow, a well-liked copper, with a wife and two kids. Although he and his wife Abi (Heather Peace) are going through a rough patch, they’re trying not to let it disrupt life for their sons, Max and Finn (Charlie Concannon and Ezra Dent-Watson). But when Farrow is found at the scene of a murder, with all the evidence pointing towards him, his world collapses. Arrested and charged, it seems Farrow’s fate is sealed. So when he gets the opportunity to escape, he seizes it with both hands. Now on the run in Manchester Farrow is a criminal on the streets he used to police. It has echoes of The Fugitive and even elements of the Bourne films, but this is very British and very now, with modern-day Manchester as its backdrop. We chatted to producer Tom Sherry – who’s also worked on New Tricks and Scott & Bailey – about the show and the challenges he and his team faced bringing it to the small screen. It’s a really interesting talk, so dig in after the jump!
It’s time to go back to the frozen wastelands of Minnesota and the city of Bemidji, to catch up with the locals after the shocks of the opening episode. In it we were introduced to Lester Nygaard, a timid everyman who was being ground down into a pulp of festering low self-esteem and self-hatred. It was only when he met the hitman, Malvo, he suddenly saw a way out for himself – by murdering his wife. So how would this timid man deal with the aftermath of such a shattering event? And where would Malvo end up next?
There was an article in a recent edition of The Independent, where the paper’s excellent TV correspondent, Gerard Gilbert, made the proclamation, “Step aside Scandi thrillers, here comes Wales“, in reference to a new four-part Welsh series called Hinterland. Having seen the first few episodes I’m not sure we’re not sure we’d go that far in requesting Scandinavian thrillers to be cast aside, but Hinterland is still well worth a watch.
It’s always tricky to know how to react to an announcement that tells you a favourite film or TV series is going to get a remake. Or a refresh. Or a re-imagining. Or a re-whateverthecurrentphraseistodescribeanewversionofsomething. On the one hand it’s exciting to know that you’ll soon be getting more of your favourite thing, but on the other there’s a nagging dread: Why are they doing it? Will they keep it close to the original? Will they destroy what I love? Although Fargo isn’t necessarily our favourite film of all time, we liked it enough to feel apprehensive when it was announced that a 10-part TV series was to be made. Thankfully, the first, feature-length episode of this 10-part series keeps everyone happy.
We’re back to one of those other series again. One of those series that people like us and people in the media will bombard you with – you must watch this ad infinitum. But Fargo, at least the first episode of which, is well worth the hype and demands you throw your family out on Easter Sunday evening and claim the television for yourself. For 90 minutes it’ll have you enthralled. After the jump is a trailer and our initial thoughts on the series.
This is my first post for a few weeks (took a break from the internet, innit?) but now, feeling a but more refreshed, it’s a good time to start digging back into the genre, because there has been some good things going on (Inspector De Luca: historically interesting, decent stories; Endeavour: solid; Law & Order: UK: up and down; Undeniable: below average; Mammon: decent). And it’s set to continue in the next few weeks, too, with the likes of Prey (stay tuned for more on that), Vera, Hinterland and Happy Valley all set to engage onscreen. Anyway, besides all the new stuff, there has been some news on two of our favourite recent crime dramas… and not all of it is good.