I'm beginning to wonder why I ever liked this series. Has it got worse or have I become more critical? As the previous reviewer noted, the box ticking was so blatant in this double episode it was laughable.
Nikki and Jack arrive on the scene. Apparently it's a very accessible bit of electrified rail in the middle of a housing estate. A body has tripped the power out - lucky that. In typical SW coincidence - it delays the train Thomas is waiting for. He's on his way to meet someone who will also, later on, have yet another coincidental connection with the case. Out on the street and down at the track, the SOCO extras haven't been given much to do - just make notes and carry little cases until the Lyall experts arrive. Cue this week's quirky copy character - a bald cockney bit of a lad in a colourful shirt and a wheelchair - coming from the opposite direction to everyone else. (Let's not ask how they got his wheelchair down the steep embankment). We're never told how the angel of vengeance actually managed to get the body there unseen - ah well. Anyway, the episode digs deep into its worthy subject of domestic abuse... a little too deep, because in this episode, virtually every character has been affected by it. The audience is then abused - battered and bludgeoned by the writers who think we might have missed something. You can imagine the production meeting and someone saying 'can we crowbar in a gay couple? We want the audience to know we realize this abuse can happen in all flavours of relationships'. The audience battering continues with Nikki's flashbacks. After the third one you think 'okay, we got it... Nikki is letting her past experiences affect her judgement'. But it doesn't stop there... she gazes off into the middle distance about ten times in all, as we're treated to more and more over saturated shots of her traumatic childhood. I'll put aside the contrived way the Lyall team are involved in far more of the process than they should be... that's been going on for quite a while now and I guess we're supposed to be blind to it.
I hope it improves. In a week that screened the absolute worst episode of Dr Who ever made ('Orphan 55' - so so bad it doesn't even warrant a review), you start to wonder where the license fee money is going. Certainly not on scriptwriters.
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