Review: Line Of Duty (S4 E1/6), Sunday 26th March, BBC1

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(C) World Productions – Photographer: Aidan Monaghan

When power meets trajectory, you get a series that can make your head spin; and Line of Duty creator Jed Mercurio’s writing has a tendency to make the viewer feel like a low-ranking tennis player being hit full and hard in the face while trying to return a serve by Sam Groth.Worries had been expressed in some quarters that the switch from BBC Two to BBC One might have necessitated some compromises or ‘dumbing down’ for the more mainstream audience. ‘New viewers’ were duly thrust straight into a ferocious and cinematic trademark opening,but the end of this episode left we stalwarts wondering if our favourite cop series – in its effort to up the ante – was in danger of jumping the shark in spectacular fashion.

NB: Spoilers ahoy! Continue reading

Filming begins on series four of Peaky Blinders; Adrien Brody joins cast

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Is Peaky Blinders a crime show? That’s the question I wrestle with each and every time I think about putting stuff up here. It’s not your usual procedural, but more a gangster show (with really bad Brummie accents) that deals with the lure, the power and the downfall of crime. Still, it’s one of these country’s most exportable series and it is good – series three, especially, was very good. And now it’s back, filming and announcing new, starry members of the cast. Continue reading

Review: Prime Suspect 1973 (S1 E4/6), Thursday 23rd March, ITV

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Free’s high-octane Wishing Well from the 1972 album Heartbreaker kicks off this episode – and DS Spencer Gibbs (Blake Harrison) would do well to heed singer Paul Rodgers’ warning: “Throw down your gun, you might shoot yourself, or is that what you’re trying to do?”

NB: Spoilers inside Continue reading

Interview: Vicky McClure, Line Of Duty

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As if you didn’t know already, the fourth series of Line Of Duty starts back up on Sunday (Sunday 26th March), and before we leap back onto the rollercoaster again let’s take a pause for breath and see what some of the stars are saying about it. I’m a big fan of Vicky McClure – who came to prominence, of course, in Shane Meadows This Is England series – and she has been one of the constants in the series since day one as undercover expert Kat Fleming. We managed to get hold of an interview with her, which you can read after the jump. Continue reading

ITV Encore series Bancroft begins filming

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A while back we reported on a new ITV Encore series, set to star Sarah Parish – who’s doing good work in Broadchurch at the moment – had been commissioned. Bancroft (sorry, but that title still feels a bit Partridge to me) is a dark and compelling four-part thriller with a tortured female detective at its heart. It’s created and written by Kate Brooke (Mr Selfridge, Ice Cream Girls, The Making of a Lady), and DCI Elizabeth Bancroft is a woman with dark secrets in her past. And now it has started filming. Continue reading

Review: Broadchurch (S3 E4/8), Monday 20th March, ITV

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The past three episodes of arguably Britain’s premiere whodunit have successfully – and rather rapidly – built up a cadre of suspects, all attendees of Cath Atwood’s 50th birthday party; the fateful night when Trish Winterman was brutally sexually assaulted. The conspiracy theories are already starting to flow thick and fast: was this, in fact, a sex party that got out of hand? Is that what Trish’s ex-husband Ian wanted to desperately erase from his laptop? Is Broadchurch a steaming Gomorrah of swinging and sex parties? Who knows. What we do know is that Hardy and Miller had a huge list of attendees to process, and not a lot of resources to process them with. But in episode four, the half-way stage of the series, things began move.

NB: There be spoilers (and theories) Continue reading