The game-playing has begun in earnest and quite clearly these adversaries locked in a deadly game of cat and mouse – Det Supt Stella Gibson (Gillian Anderson) and serial killer Paul Spector (Jamie Dornan) – are well matched in the psychopathic stakes. Courtesy of Spector’s unrivalled ability to move wraith-like through the world unseen like an Irish ninja (even by high-end hotel CCTV, seemingly) and effortlessly break through locked doors, we get a glimpse into a chink in Stella’s armour in episode three.
We’re not exactly being spoiled with new episodes of BBC blockbuster Sherlock. Stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman have been otherwise engaged with the likes of Star Trek: Into Darkness, The Hobbit, Fargo and The Imitation Game, and it’s not surprising that it’s difficult for them to fit Sherlock into their schedules. So we will have to make do with the planned Sherlock special some time in 2015, before the agonisingly long wait for a full Series four in 2016. This week the BBC and producer Sue Vertue tweeted out a new Sherlock image, which piqued interest and begged the question: what’s going on?
Mathematician Harlan Emple (Rich Sommer, last seen in the episode ‘Solve for X’) returns in this episode in which Holmes tries to encourage a closer bond between Watson and Kitty. Emple, an eccentric who likes to solve mathematics problems with his shirt off, is taking part in a complex online mathematics puzzle involving a number known as Belphegor’s Prime. When the clues lead him to an empty warehouse, he finds not the next clue, but a dead body packed in mothballs. Needless to say Holmes and Watson are called in, and initial indications are that the motive involves the impressive cash prize offered for solving the problem. Of course, it’s not that simple.
ITV today confirmed commission of a second series of Grantchester, again starring James Norton and Robson Green. It was a funny series. Full of gentle amateur sleuthing, it was set in the beautiful Cambridgeshire hamlet of Grantchester. Full of bucolic vistas and beautiful, 1950s period detail I was expecting to love it. While it was an easy watch, it didn’t catch fire – the relationship between parish vicar Sidney Chambers and gruff policeman Geordie Keating particularly had to believe and it had none of the wit or sparkle of a Marple. Still, it did well and it has reaped the rewards of high ratings. What do I know?
After the initial teeth-gnashing emotion of the first episode – where Tony and Emily Hughes were coming to terms with the disappearance of their young son Oliver – I’ve felt this drama has taken a while to get going. Yes, it has been super-tense in places, but the dual timeline approach has seemed to stunt this drama’s growth and drive. Thankfully, last night’s episode, in both timelines, was the most dramatic and tense since the opener.
Last week I wrote a news story that tried to tie up the casting details for the second series of HBO’s True Detective. The whole casting rumour merry-go-round had merrily spun for what seemed like an eternity, and although last week’s news was actually bang-on, it wasn’t actually fully confirmed. Until now.
As the return from the dead of Oswald Cobblepot kicks off this week’s episode, Fish Mooney’s cry of ‘He’s ALIVE!?’ reminds us irresistibly of Brian Blessed’s utterance in Flash Gordon. Cobblepot, you’ll recall, was supposed to have been offed by Jim Gordon, who spared him in an act of compassion he may live to regret. Cobblepot has returned to Gotham and wormed his way into the confidence of gangster Maroni, and now Gordon has to explain to mob boss Falcone (as well as to his partner Bullock) why ‘Penguin’ isn’t floating face-down in the Hudson.