Review: Lewis (S8 E6/6), Friday 14th November, ITV



As DC Maddox (Angela Griffin) lies in hospital, hovering between life and death after having been skewered in the head with a roof slater’s hammer, all Lewis (Kevin Whateley) and Hathaway (Laurence Fox) seem to be able to do is squabble. Lewis, now retired but called back into action as a consultant by Chief Supt Innocent (Rebecca Front), is stepping on Hathaway’s toes by refusing to believe that he could have got it wrong 13 years ago when roofer Graham Lawrie (Alec Newman) was jailed for the murders of three police officers with a slater’s hammer.

Diagnosed psychopath Lawrie is conveniently in the clear for the latest copycat murder of a young police officer and the attack on Maddox, as he was in court for an appeal against his life sentences for the earlier killings.

‘You two need to stop squabbling, pull your socks up and work together,’ Innocent wearily tells Lewis, before psyching herself up for a firefight with the media over the sensational overturning of Lawrie’s conviction.

Predictably, the supremely manipulative Lawrie’s first port of call after getting out of prison is the police station where, full of righteous indignation, he confronts Lewis, blaming him for ruining his life through the loss of his livelihood and his marriage – there has to be a public inquiry into his conviction, he argues, to make Lewis answerable for a gross miscarriage of justice.

The ferocity of Lawrie’s argument coupled with his calm demeanour has Hathaway visibly wobbling. He reminds Lawrie that the appeal was actually allowed only on a technicality – a laboratory mistake made by the company that carried out the forensics work – but he is clearly rattled. Could his mentor have got it all wrong?

With Lawrie back on the street the investigation into which of his fans carried out the latest killings in a bid to the deflect blame is on – and speed is of the essence because the field of suspects is a pretty large one.

Running the gauntlet of the press pack to get back into his house, Lawrie pointedly gives sad dowdy fan-girl Pamela Carson (Robin Weaver) the kiss-off when she hands him a bag of groceries. As she bites back tears at his front door, it becomes pretty clear to her that she has now served her purpose and the future she dreamed of with him was never a possibility.

Meanwhile, the psychiatrist involved in his case, Dr Sally Rook (Susan Wooldridge), is telling anyone who will listen, including Lewis, that the quashing of his sentence was a travesty and that Lawrie is still a very dangerous man and she wants to help the police find the accomplice – the ‘beta’ to Lawrie’s ‘alpha’. Is she just another spurned woman, or an academic desperately trying to prolong her 15 minutes of fame?

One female fan Lawrie isn’t dropping yet is his hot lawyer Katherine Warwick (Priyanga Burford) – well, he isn’t entirely off the hook yet and his overweening pride won’t be satisfied until he is exonerated.

A couple of his followers are fairly easily discounted as suspects. Academic Brendan Ward was no fan of Lawrie’s; as he reveals one of the murdered coppers was his lover and his only interest in the con was trying to get him to explain why he’d killed him. His efforts were repaid by a beating from a steroid-addicted prison guard on Lawrie’s orders – he’s a bit of a basket-case too.

However, impressionable undergraduate weirdo Luke Burgess, who follows Lawrie around Oxford town centre like a little puppy, looks a likely lad – and Lawrie’s trying to offload him too.

With so many scorned fans surrounding him, it is no surprise when Lawrie is murdered in his home with this own weapon of choice – but whose rage at rejection by their twisted hero is strong enough to have elicited this reversal?

Considering this was the final episode of the series, things are all tied up in a quick and perfunctory way and the solution is fairly obvious. However, if everyone involved can be bothered to reconvene for another series, things have been left in a pretty comfortable way – after spats about who is in charge the boys have put their toys back in the pram and are BFFs again, and Liz Maddox lives to fight another day.

Deborah Shrewsbury

For our episode one review go here

For our episode two review go here

For our episode three review go here

For our episode four review go here

For our episode five review go here


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