Review: True Detective (S2 E2/8), Monday 29th June, Sky Atlantic

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It’s almost a relief that last week’s first episode of the second series of True Detective has been and gone, because the fall-out from that episode was beginning to drive me mad. It was so eagerly awaited everyone, and I mean everyone, seemed to have an opinion on it (including, let’s be fair, me and this site). It wasn’t as visually engaging as series one, they said (and me); the characters or dialogue didn’t leap off the page like series one, they said (and me); it just wasn’t like series one and this was the ‘difficult sophomore effort’, they said. “They” said this after one 50-something-minute episode. I wonder what “They” will say after this second episode…

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Review: Black Work (S1 E2/3), Sunday 28th June, ITV

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MAMMOTH SCREEN LTD PRESENTS BLACK WORK for ITV. Episode 2 Pictured:  PHIL DAVIS as Tom Piper and  SHERIDAN SMITH as Jo Gillespie. Photographer: STUART WOOD AND DES WILLIE. This image is the copyright of ITV and must be credited. The images are for one use only and to be used in relation to BLACK WORK, any further charge could incur a fee.

This ITV three-parter, starring Sheridan Smith, has turned out to be an unexpectedly well constructed, noirish tale of paranoia and hidden identities. After last week’s first episode, where WPC Jo Gillespie (Smith) found out her freshly murdered copper husband was, in fact, an undercover officer who had been working on a case to bring a gun-trading gang down. This set her off into a downward spiral of suspicion, her short-cropped hair framing a face that frequently wandered off into a semi-permanent dazed, teary expression. Continue reading