Law & Order: UK: Season 2, Episode 6

Honour Bound (7 Jan. 2011)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
8.1
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 40 users  
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Following the DPS investigation of the shooting of an informant by a detective, Devlin looks into the detective's past which leads to an investigation of Brooks for stealing drugs six years earlier.

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Title: Honour Bound (07 Jan 2011)

Honour Bound (07 Jan 2011) on IMDb 8.1/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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DS Jimmy Valentine / Narrator
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Evelyn Wyndham
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Sara Fraser
Gabrielle Glaister ...
Liz Wakeman
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Eamonn Callaghan
Gillian McCutcheon ...
Rae Hendrie ...
Anna Moynihan
Jeremy Bulloch ...
Dickie Grant
Robyn Moore ...
Mary Aliadiere
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Storyline

When an undercover drug buy goes wrong, DS Ronnie Brooks finds himself in a very difficult spot. Brooks and DS Jimmy Valentine are posing as drug dealers when Valentine shoots the dealer claiming the man pulled a gun on him. Brooks was behind their car at the time and saw nothing but has known Valentine for many years and has no reason to doubt him. DS Matt Devlin on the other hand did not see the dead man pull a gun or do anything threatening and is given 24 hours by DI Natalie Chandler to find evidence or shut up. When the Crown Prosecution Service charges Valentine, the dirty cop testifies that Brooks was in on a drug theft. Ronnie has to call on an old friend to testify on his behalf but at a great cost to herself. Written by garykmcd

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Crime | Drama | Mystery

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7 January 2011 (USA)  »

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16:9 HD
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Quotes

Ronnie Brooks: I can't go in that witness box. It's complicated.
Matt Devlin: You're a copper, Ron. You live for this job, and they could charge you with perverting the course of justice. Be the end of you, mate.
Ronnie Brooks: I've admitted I've made mistakes, okay? And I've put 'em right. But I'm the best I can be now, Matt, truly, I am. So when do I get a break, eh? When do I get forgiven? I didn't take that heroin. You believe me, don't you?
Matt Devlin: Of course.
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User Reviews

Season 1: Solid but unremarkable extension of the franchise
19 January 2010 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

For some reason your Law & Orders and CSI type franchise shows have never really appealed to me all that much and generally I have found that, while I can always kill some time by sitting in front of one stand-alone style episode for an hour, I've never really had the desire to make any effort to make sure I'm there for the next episode. Of course it does help that there is always an episode of Law & Order (CI, SVU etc) on some channel somewhere so no effort is actually required, but I've never been all that taken by the high-gloss, simple solution 40 minute shows when compared to shows like The Shield, H:LOTS and of course The Wire.

I'm sure to some this sentiment will be seen as me simply being snobbish against a formula/franchise because of its success and popularity but it is not that simple, because I do actually quite enjoy the episodes that I watch – as I did when I first experienced the franchise when they did crossover episodes with H:LOTS. I generally end up watching episodes because my girlfriend likes "easy" television that can be watched while reading a magazine or surfing the net – stuff that requires half an eye on it but will generally explain plot points in big letters and use musical cues to tell you what the tone is, so you don't have to worry about paying too much attention. As a result, when ITV started showing a UK version of the franchise, I did end up watching, which I didn't mind because I was curious to see how it worked.

At first my reaction was mostly one of aloof snickering at the show, because it just didn't seem to fit particularly well and just felt like it was clunking round the screen. After a few episodes though it seemed to settle in, so maybe it was just the initial juxtaposition between the style, titles, music and location cards that I associate with the US shows and the English settings – at first it did feel like an expensive fan film on YouTube. The plots may be lifted from the US originals but they do still work reasonably well and provide a solid story for the duration of the show, not a great deal of development in terms of the narrative but then that is not the focus here. That the franchise can produce this is not in doubt and it is as professional and polished (and perhaps lacking heart) as one expects and it is this professionalism that helps cover some of the niggles that I have with it.

The first is that, while it is a UK product, it constantly feels like the UK setting is a "thing" rather than just part of it. As a result it does feel a little false at times – both in "doing" UK and at times when it doesn't. By this I mean that it does feel like a switch that is flicked on whenever a setting or character of the week is used but then generally the scenarios and main characters have not been written as really British. Hard for me to describe but it never loses that "parachuted in" feel, not a biggie but it sticks in the mind. A much more significant biggie is the casting. On one had we have some solid faces in here but then on the other we have two very weird pieces of casting in terms of the two detectives (who are the "main" characters). Seeing Bradley Walsh in the Briscoe role did two things to me; firstly it made me think that whatever percentage his agent is getting is never going to be big enough to reward him/her for this coup but then, secondly, I found it nearly impossible not to see him as third rate comedian Bradley Walsh. I did sort of get used to him because he did "OK" but he was never better than that or did anything that explained why he was cast in this role. Alongside him is a bigger shock to me and other Battlestar Galactica fans because not only do we have Walsh but supporting him is none other than Apollo (Bamber) in what one cannot help but see as a backward step. On one hand he has stepped into another franchise TV role but then on the other he has finished a leading role in a well-known US sci-fi and taking a role supporting a light entertainer in a UK crime show on ITV.

The good news is that he is good here but again one cannot shake the feeling that stepping away from the US was not his best career move. Dr Who's Agyeman took a minute to get used to but she steps up when given the material (as she is mid-season), while old-hands Daniels and Paterson do good turns despite not having too much in the way of character. Supporting turns vary but are mostly good enough for this type of show. Overall what we get is a solid addition to the Law & Order franchise – nothing new or innovative but more or less what you expect it to do but done in the UK, giving me the same "I quite enjoyed that episode but have no specific desire to watch another even though I know I will someday" reaction, which is pretty faint praise when you think about it.


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