Review: Black Lake (S1 E5&6/8), Saturday 30th September, BBC Four

NB: SPOILERS INSIDE We’re into the back end of this Swedish/Danish-language horror/thriller, and one of the things it’s doing well is to present us with a possibility of paranormal activity on the one hand, but then also give a potentially rational explanation to all the goings-on. Is Hanne really sensitive to ghosts or is she…

BBC to adapt Tana French’s The Dublin Murders books for television

Tana French has always been regarded as an excellent crime writer, winning awards hither and thither. The American-born, Irish author has written six novels based in Dublin, and featuring the fictional Dublin Murder Squad. Now we hear that the BBC has hired the brilliant Sarah Phelps to adapt them into a series for television.

Review: Liar (S1 E3/6), Monday 25th September, ITV

NB: SPOILERS INSIDE You watch enough crime dramas to know that by episode three or four in a series of six something is going to happen. Perhaps a new character will emerge that will put a spanner in the works, or a reveal will take place that will propel the story into new territory. So…

Review: Rellik (S1 E3/6), Monday 25th September, BBC One

NB: SPOILERS INSIDE This Harry and Jack Williams series has, so far, been a test of patience more than anything else. The two opening episodes presented us with a serial ‘acid’ killer case, told backwards. With plenty of what seemed to be scenes that didn’t make sense placed within a structure that was bold but…

Review: Black Lake (S1 E3&4/8), Saturday 23rd September,

NB: SPOILERS INSIDE Last week, Swedish series Black Lake (Svartsjön) started on BBC Four and provided plenty of horror/crime mash-up fun, telling the story of a group of twentysomethings stuck in a remote ski lodge, which has a history – 20 years before a young family was murdered in the hotel, and our main character,…

First Look: Spiral (Series 6)

One of the heavyweights of European crime drama, Spiral (Engrenages), returned for its sixth series premiere on Monday night in its native France. The hope is that we’ll be able to see it here in the UK on BBC Four before the year is out, but in the meantime, there was much excitement on the…

ITV announces Martin Clunes crime drama, Manhunt

One of the trends in crime drama this year is the ‘true crime drama’, stories based on rea-life events and adapted into a drama for the small screen. Already this year, we’ve had dramas on BBC One that have explored the Rochdale sex scandal and The Moorside, starring Sheridan Smith. Over on ITV, Stephen Graham…

Why Big Little Lies won big at the Emmys

HBO’s Big Little Lies – shown in the UK on Sky Atlantic – won big at the Emmys on Sunday night. It won Outstanding Limited Series, Outstanding Lead Actress In A Limited Series Or Movie (Nicole Kidman), Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Limited Series Or Movie (Alexander Skarsgard), Outstanding Directing For A Limited Series, Movie Or…

Jonathan Stroud’s Lockwood & Co. coming to television

Under the umbrella of crime drama, there are many different sub-genres, demonstrating the breadth beneath it. We get procedurals, cosy crime, psychological thriller and mash-ups between genres (horror and crime being the most prevalent). One area that hasn’t been explored so much is Young Adult detective drama, but, thanks to a leading British production company,…

Review: Liar (S1 E2/6), Monday 18th September, ITV

NB: SPOILERS INSIDE Episode one of Liar was a slick, tense she-said/he-said noir thriller, but it still made me feel uncomfortable watching it. In this age of transparency and encouragement to the survivors of sexual abuse, I often wondered whether this sort of drama, which pointed suspicion at a survivor, might do more harm than good…

Review: Rellik (S1 E2/6), Monday 18th September, BBC One

NB: SPOILERS INSIDE Last week’s opening episode presented us with a tricksy and challenging viewing experience – Rellik’s story started at the end and worked backwards thanks to a series of rewinds and flashbacks. Many won’t have enjoyed this, and the jury was out for me, too. On the one hand, Rellik could be a daring,…