9 items from 2014
In 1973, Ricky Tomlinson spent Christmas in prison after picketing a strike. More than 40 years later, one of our best-loved actors says that the fight to clear the names of the Shrewsbury 24 faces a final hurdle: government secrecy
It is more than 40 years since Ricky Tomlinson spent Christmas in prison. In December 1973 the actor was a young painter and decorator, married with two small sons, when he was sentenced to two years for his part in picketing a national construction workers’ strike. After more than a year behind bars, much of it in solitary confinement, he walked free – only to find he’d been blacklisted by the building industry and was unemployable.
Whether prison worked for Tomlinson is an interesting question. Unable to get work as a builder, he had a go at standup in the local pubs and clubs instead, landed a bit part in Alan Bleasdale’s Boys from the Blackstuff, »
- Decca Aitkenhead
"Sherlock" may not return for its fourth season until -- say it ain't so -- 2017, due to the hectic film schedules of in-demand stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. In the meantime, you can rewatch all three seasons and soon you can binge on Cumberbatch in "The Imitation Game" and Freeman in "The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies." But what then?
If you're craving more veddy British crime solving, you don't have far to look. Here are some of the best series the BBC (and ITV) has to offer, with private detectives, psychiatrists, cops, spies, and forensic pathologists all cracking cases, catching criminals and drinking lots of tea.
1. "Sherlock Holmes" (1984-1994)
If it's more Sherlock you crave (and not just Mr. Cumberbatch), then you must see Jeremy Brett's intensely intellectual (and equally arrogant) period-appropriate take on the legendary detective. This Watson is also solid, especially in "The House of the Baskervilles. »
- Sharon Knolle
In 1846, two men named John Swindall and James Osborne engaged in a cart race on a public road that caused the death of a pedestrian. Only one vehicle had killed the victim, but as both had encouraged the other to drive dangerously, Swindall and Osborne were judged to be acting on a common intention and were both charged with manslaughter. The case ushered in the Joint Enterprise doctrine in English law, whereby two or more people who agree to commit a crime together are liable for the criminal actions of other members of their group.
Joint Enterprise. It sounds like a judicious scheme. Why should members of a group who set out with the common goal of murder evade justice only because they didn’t - or it couldn’t be »
Due to air on BBC One on Sunday the 6th of July, the ninety-minute film tells the story of a teenager dragged into a murder investigation that threatens to upturn his entire life. The cast, as McGovern's casts tend to be, has no weak links, from Game Of Thrones' Michelle Fairley and Robert Pugh to Susan Lynch, Daniel Mays, Jodhi May and relative newcomer Nico Mirallegro.
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A seven-part series set during the turbulent period of the establishment of the penal colony in Sydney in 1788 may seem a stretch for Liverpool-born and based writer Jimmy McGovern.
Yet Banished, which starts shooting in Sydney on Monday, deals with themes the writer has often explored in the UK series he's created in a distinguished 30- year career.
.Jimmy.s stories are about the moral complexities which human beings face when they are in difficult situations,. his producing partner Sita Williams tells If. .He asks the audience: .What would you have done in that situation? Would you have done it any differently?..
David Wenham heads the large Australian/British cast as Governor Arthur Phillip, a pragmatic idealist who hopes to turn the penal colony into a land of opportunity for all. Joseph Milson portrays his nemesis Major Ross, who believes the only chance of survival is to rule with an iron fist. »
- Don Groves
“The Fall,” which also toplines Jamie Dornan (“Fifty Shades of Grey”) and is created and written by Alan Cubitt, is BBC Two’s most successful drama to date, averaging more than 4 million viewers per episode across its first season in 2013.
Endemol will globally distribute Artists Studio productions, including the second season of “The Fall,” which has been commissioned for production in 2014, as well as numerous projects commissioned and in development for U.K. and U.S. broadcasters. Further announcements will be made in due course.
Producer Gub Neal, whose credits include “Prime Suspect,” “Cracker” and “Queer as Folk,” co-founded Artists Studio in February 2009, alongside Justin Thomson-Glover and Patrick Irwin, all three of whom formerly ran drama producer Box TV. »
- Leo Barraclough
It's Wednesday - the weekend has never felt further away and one of the few things that made Hump Day bearable these past six weeks - BBC Two's superb police thriller Line of Duty - is no longer with us.
A third series is a near-certainty, but what is a discerning television watcher to do until anti-corruption unit AC-12 returns to our screens?
Instead of mourning Line of Duty's absence from the schedules tonight at 9pm, how about embracing the fact that there's a whole world of quality television out there?
Here's five crime thrillers that could become your next TV obsession - both homegrown shows and a few from further afield.
Compelling tales of police corruption, a lead copper who commits terrible acts for (mostly) the right reasons and a roster of determined detectives determinedly on their tail.
The Shield - a multi-award-winning Us TV »
Jimmy McGovern has defined his own brand of humanistic British crime drama with Cracker, The Lakes and Accused – now he turns his attentions to the former colonies. His next BBC drama is Banished, set in 18th-century Australia and centered on the lives of a group of convicts.
A BBC statement describes the series as exploring "the lives, loves, relationships and battle for survival of a group of convicts, the soldiers who guard them and the men who govern them in the early days of this settlement". It stars Russell Tovey, known for his roles in Him & Her and The History Boys as well as current HBO gay drama Looking, playing a convict who struggles on his arrival at the penal colony. He forms bonds with other »
- Ben Beaumont-Thomas
The ambitious series follows the lives, loves, relationships and battle for survival of a group of convicts, the marines that guard them and men who govern them.
David Wenham ("300") plays pragmatic idealistic Governor Arthur Phillip who wanted to turn the ramshackle settlement of Sydney into land of opportunity.
Joseph Millson ("Holby City") plays Major Ross, a man who thinks the only chance of survival is to rule with an iron fist. Russell Tovey ("Looking"), Myanna Buring ("Ripper Street") and Julian Rhind-Tutt ("The Hour") play convicts.
- Garth Franklin
9 items from 2014
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