Waking the Dead: Season 8, Episode 5

Substitute: Part 1 (20 Sep. 2009)

TV Episode  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
6.9
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Eve is intrigued that her boyfriend, Ukrainian aid worker Stefan, has a bag full of different passports and chest bruises suggesting bullet wounds. She secretly takes his DNA and links it ... See full summary »

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Title: Substitute: Part 1 (20 Sep 2009)

Substitute: Part 1 (20 Sep 2009) on IMDb 6.9/10

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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
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Stefan Koscinski
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Olena Kuzmich
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Georg
Laurence Possa ...
Andrei (as Laurentiu Possa)
Eliza L. Bennett ...
Briony Havers
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Devlin
Suzanne Burden ...
Dr Greenberg
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Victor
Gergo Danka ...
Kristian
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Storyline

Eve is intrigued that her boyfriend, Ukrainian aid worker Stefan, has a bag full of different passports and chest bruises suggesting bullet wounds. She secretly takes his DNA and links it to the death of another aid worker, Briony Havers. Boyd, opposed by all the team but especially Eve, re-opens the Havers case. Stefan admits he knew Briony but denies murder. Eve believes him, particularly when he turns out to have saved the life of a girl called Olena when a ferry capsized. Olena was an illegal immigrant, though, and Grace thinks Briony and Stefan were people traffickers and Briony was killed to silence her. At the club frequented by Ukrainians, where Eve met Stefan, some form of exchange is practised, involving Briony's ex-lover, Devlin. Eve resigns when Boyd breaks her cover by bringing Stefan to her lab. She is told that Olena worked in a hospital but when she gets there she finds it is derelict and she is overpowered. Written by don @ minifie-1

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Crime | Drama | Mystery

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Release Date:

20 September 2009 (UK)  »

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Substitute
Written by Pete Townshend
Performed by Andrew Byron
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User Reviews

Not Waking the Dead's finest moment....
4 August 2011 | by (Perth, Australia) – See all my reviews

Look, overall I am a fan of this programme, but some episodes are so cobbled together that if it wasn't for the strong characters and acting you would switch off after half an hour. This is one such episode.

It would appear to me that the weakest, least believable episodes invariably feature 'the other', no - not sex - but any group that is NOT Anglo - Celtic. Episodes that feature Muslims, the 'black community' (that episode where Spence's mum is drawn into the story line concerning VOODOO for goodness sake.... this was cringeworthy stuff at times), Romanys - ('Wren Boys') , they have all been represented on this series as two dimensional stereotypes. What makes these stereotypes so jarring is that put against the multi layered regular characters, they really stand out.

This episode has its strengths (as all the episodes certainly do, even the weakest), but you will never buy this, never really suspend disbelief and go with it. An 'Eastern European' is central to this narrative, so you just know they are not going to be trustworthy don't you? (Another stereotype rearing its head for the umpteenth time)

All I will say is, watch out for the ideological message about 'do gooders' - ie. Representing aid workers as being involved in some nightmarishly 'bad' things is taking a right wing message (ideology) one step beyond. Particularly when Boyd and Crew let perpetrators of evil not only execute someone, but also go free to continue with their evil doings at the end.

The subject matter is an important one, but this was a big big let down.

Not Waking the Dead's finest moment by a long shot.


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