Review: The Missing (S2 E8/8), Wednesday 30th November, BBC1

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WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 22/11/2016 - Programme Name: The Missing series 2 - TX: 30/11/2016 - Episode: n/a (No. 8) - Picture Shows: Adam Gettrick (DEREK RIDDELL) - (C) New Pictures - Photographer: New Pictures

(C) New Pictures – Photographer: New Pictures

And so it came to this. The final instalment of a crazy, dual timeline-hopping story that has taken in Germany, Iraq and Switzerland as its three main locations. A story of family breakdowns, shocks, twists and a power drill. Yes, this second series of The Missing has had a bit of everything and is the closest thing on television to a high-concept, page-turning crime novel. What I mean by that is novels – especially crime novels – often rely on unreliable narrators, different timelines and all sorts of literary tricks and devices. This series by Harry and Jack Williams has felt like that at times, and they’ve pulled out the structural trickery to deliver some real pyrotechnics in pretty much every episode.

NB: Spoilers inside
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Review: The Missing (S2 E7/8), Wednesday 23rd November, BBC1

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WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 15/11/2016 - Programme Name: The Missing series 2 - TX: 23/11/2016 - Episode: n/a (No. 7) - Picture Shows: Julien Baptiste (TCHEKY KARYO) - (C) New Pictures - Photographer: New Pictures

(C) New Pictures – Photographer: New Pictures

So last week I posted a review where I stated everything seemed to point to the women who said she was Alice Webster being Alice Webster. Some readers pointed out that I got this wrong. But surely this is all part of the game – the Williams brothers pulling us this way and that, injecting subterfuge and obfuscation at every opportunity to throw us off the scent. To lead us down avenues, and then take us down others. To establish suspects and then present us with others. But back to it. Adam Gettrick – the man who had killed our young German police friend – had been earmarked as the kidnapper, and with this we knew the chase was on to not only expose him and explain why he had done what he had done, but to catch him. And, of course, to finally find out the true identity of the young woman who had presented herself as Alice Webster…

NB: Spoilers ahoy! Continue reading

Review: The Missing (S2 E6/8), Wednesday 16th November, BBC1

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WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 08/11/2016 - Programme Name: The Missing series 2 - TX: 16/11/2016 - Episode: n/a (No. 6) - Picture Shows:  Julien Baptiste (TCHEKY KARYO), Gemma Webster (KEELEY HAWES) - (C) New Pictures - Photographer: Steffan Hill

 (C) New Pictures – Photographer: Steffan Hill

Can we talk about the drill? I think we can. When army liaison officer Adam Gettrick was revealed to have been ‘Alice Webster”s captor and father to her child (or at least that’s what was inferred) and mercilessly and brutally killed German Polizei Jorn Lenhart with a cordless drill (I still can’t drive past a B&Q after that), everything changed. It was bold by Harry and Jack Williams to reveal the captor and/or killer so early, eschewing the usual last-episode reveal, but now we want answers. What happened between Gettrick and Alice Webster? Was the Alice Webster we saw in the Swiss restaurant and the cabin the Alice Webster? Where is Sophie Giroux? Where is Lena Garber? What did happen in Iraq and what did Stone, Reid and A N Other do? We might not have got all the answers tonight, but we got some, in another very strong episode.

NB: spoilers, la la la la la, spoilers, la la la Continue reading

Review: The Missing (S2 E5/8), Wednesday 9th November, BBC1

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WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 01/11/2016 - Programme Name: The Missing series 2 - TX: 09/11/2016 - Episode: n/a (No. 5) - Picture Shows: Julien Baptiste (TCHEKY KARYO) - (C) New Pictures - Photographer: Laura Radford

(C) New Pictures – Photographer: Laura Radford

I’ve been enjoying this series of The Missing. I have, honestly. I know I’ve been gobbing on about lack of emotional connection with the characters (because of the dual timeline approach), but I have been enjoying it: it has been innovatively told, very well acted and full of edge-of-your-seat twists and turns. This episode – episode five – was the one I was really impressed with, providing us as it did with a bold and daring twist right at the end, and some deeper characterisation.

NB: Spoilers, spoiler, spoilers. And more spoilers. Continue reading

The Missing’s Tchéky Karyo: Julien Baptiste is the new Hercule Poirot

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the-missing-france-3-tcheky-karyo-le-scenario-est-vraiment-brillant-_news_fullLast night I went along to a special screening of episode five of The Missing (review coming later tonight), held at a posh hotel in the middle of London. It’s always a treat to see television dramas on the big screen, and to also see some of the talent connected to them talk about their work afterwards. In this case, Harry and Jack Williams and Tchéky Karyo were in attendance, so I’ve transcribed some of the things they said. Continue reading

Review: The Missing (S2 E3&4/8), Wednesday 26th October and Wednesday 2nd November, BBC1

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WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 18/10/2016 - Programme Name: The Missing series 2 - TX: 26/10/2016 - Episode: n/a (No. 3) - Picture Shows: **EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION UNTIL TUESDAY 18TH OCTOBER 2016** Sam Webster (DAVID MORRISSEY) - (C) New Pictures - Photographer: Sophie Mutevelian

(C) New Pictures – Photographer: Sophie Mutevelian

By now you’re probably up to date with The Missing, and if you are, up until about an hour ago you were one step ahead of me. I’ve just managed to catch up with episode four of the second series, which has so far been twisting and turning like a python dancing to Chubby Checker. The last I saw of the Websters Alice was out in the back garden with a shifty-looking Colonel Stone, who was intimating to Alice that she should keep her mouth shut. But in the two episodes I’m quickly going to recap, a whole load more stuff has happened and the story has moved on significantly. Continue reading

Review: The Missing (S2 E1/8), Wednesday 12th October, BBC1

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WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 04/10/2016 - Programme Name: The Missing series 2 - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: **EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION UNTIL 00:01 HRS ON TUESDAY 4TH OCTOBER 2016** Sam Webster (DAVID MORRISSEY), Gemma Webster (KEELEY HAWES), Eve Stone (LAURA FRASER), Matthew Webster (JAKE DAVIES), Jorn Lenhart (FLORIAN BARTHOLOMAI), Alice Webster (ABIGAIL HARDINGHAM) - (C) New Pictures - Photographer: Robert Viglasky

(C) New Pictures – Photographer: Robert Viglasky

The first series of The Missing was the series that put the Williams brothers – Harry and Jack – on the map. It was a harrowing story of two British parents stranded in France searching desperately for their little boy, Oliver, with the help of local policeman Julien Baptiste. The search drove the couple apart and threw them into a downward spiral of madness and obsession, and as viewers it had enormous emotional impact, tapping into some of our greatest fears. The Williams brothers followed that series up with One Of Us, a disappointingly messy four-parter, but they’re back with the second series of The Missing – an eight-parter, but a brand-new story, this time providing a different spin on the idea of a missing person: that of a child returning from years of presumed disappearance. Continue reading