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Young Detective Constable Anna Travis joins the team led by D.C.I. Langton to investigate a series of gruesome murders of young women, which first began eight years previously. All the victims were prostitutes and all killed in the same way. Then a seventh body is found but this is the corpse of a student, though a vital piece of evidence links her death to the others, involving a house in Manchester where Alan Daniels, a popular young actor, grew up. Anna goes undercover to get to know him better but finds herself getting emotionally involved. Written by
don @ minifie-1
Decent but not great start- elevated by Jason Durr and the interrogation scene
As a fan of detective/crime dramas, 'Above Suspicion' is, and never will be, one of my favourites, and it is a show that will divide viewers. For me, it falls into the reasonably decent but not great camp, after being riveted by 'Prime Suspect' and finding several impressive things with 'Trial and Retribution' there was the air of disappointment.
Considering the mixed reviews it could have been worse. There are problems sure, the script gets the job done competently and is reasonably tight but with not much spark or fire, only really coming alive from the climactic interrogation scene onwards. The cliché-ridden characters are not yet very interesting and little is done with them, both main characters being stereotypically one-dimensional.
The flashbacks have a tendency to be clumsily inserted, the sound can be sloppy and out of synch, the relationship between the two main characters is coming across as a bit contrived and makes Langton almost too much like a sleaze and some of the shock value is unnecessarily gratuitous (not quite as bad as "Red Dahlia" though). Lastly, Kelly Reilly is not doing much for me yet, pretty if implausibly young-looking but limited in expression and pallid in presence.
For all the flaws that have been listed, there are things that are done well. The series looks great, the split screen is something that will and has divided viewers but was done interestingly and cleverly here to this reviewer, and the gritty but never overly-drab look is a good fit. The story at least didn't make me look at my watch or want to do something else, and there was some atmosphere (admittedly however there is an over-familiarity and there is a lack of suspense, which doesn't make 'Above Suspicion' as constantly gripping as it should). Despite his material not giving him much variety and such, Ciaron Hinds commands the screen very strongly.
However there are two excellent assets. Much has been said about Jason Durr, and this reviewer can only echo the near-unanimous raving over Durr's chillingly creepy performance, especially in the interrogation scene. As for the interrogation scene, that was the other highlight, nail-bitingly intense and effectively harrowing it is by far the best individual scene of 'Above Suspicion's' entire run.
All in all, reasonably decent but not particularly great. 5/10 Bethany Cox
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