Prime Suspect (TV Mini-Series 1991) - Plot Summary Poster



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  • DCI Jane Tennison has been passed over time and again to lead a murder investigation, so when one of her fellow DCIs has a heart attack just before he's ready to charge their prime suspect, Jane sees her chance to lead a murder investigation. But the murder squad she takes over is hostile to her, the men upstairs are eager to pull the plug on her investigation, her personal relationships suffer from her obsession with work, and the prime suspect remains elusive. Jane has her work cut out for her as she and her team work their way through computer data trails, legwork, intuitive leaps, chases, arrests, and confessions to find the killer.

  • After her colleague DCI John Shefford has a heart attack, DCI Jane Tennison is given the opportunity to do what few women have done with the Metropolitan Police: lead a major murder investigation. Her superiors aren't too keen to appoint her and the welcome she gets from the murder squad is chilly to say the least. Her main nemesis is DS Bill Otley, an old-timer who was close to Shefford and doesn't think a woman should heading a murder investigation. The prime suspect in the case is George Marlow who admits to having slept with the victim, Karen Howard, on the day she died. He's known as something of a ladies man and and a traveling salesman who regularly frequented prostitutes. As Tennison delves deeper into the case, she finds an number of unsolved cases that match not only Marlow's sales route, but coincide with his business trips to the areas in question. With the growing support of her team, she works herself into exhaustion, affecting her personal relationships with her live-in companion, Peter Rawlins, as well as her extended family.

  • Detective Chief Inspector Jane Tennison is in charge of the investigation to uncover a serial rapist/murderer. Even before Jane takes the case, there is a prime suspect. If he is guilty, can enough admissible evidence be gathered to convict him? If he is innocent, who is committing these crimes? Her job is complicated by the hostility of her staff towards a woman boss. In particular, she crosses swords with Sergeant Bill Otley, whose hostility threatens to cross over the line to obstruction. Jane also must deal with how her growing obsession with the case is damaging her relationship with her boyfriend.

  • A female police detective investigates a series of serial murders while dealing with sexist hostility from her male comrades.


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