Recently, I feel like I’ve been binging on Crime dramas. Is it that time of year…
From the wrong side of the law perspective, I watched the new Minder (4th February 2009 Five) last night on Sky Plus. I had heard some of the reviewers which weren’t that keen. Why produce a remake and George Cole had said it was a programme for the eighties and didn’t have the same relevance now. Though with the credit crunch so maybe the remake will be more relevant than we first thought. The new version wasn’t the most gripping drama in the world and it was light and fluffy, but it was entertaining when you’re just winding down and don’t want anything too deep. Maybe, I’ll watch another ‘new’ Minder when I’m chilling, but not sure if it will be something I’ll want to become a regular viewer of. The ‘new’ Minder with Shane Richie as Archie Daley, Arthur Daley’s nephew, and Lex Shrapnel as Archie’s ’minder’ Jamie Cartwright, moved quickly to establish the partnership between the two men, but Archie and his new minder are too much like each other. Shane Richie looks like he could look after himself if he could be bothered and Jamie felt, at times, like he has come out of Kill Bill because he had to be extreme to make us believe he was the perfect minder for Archie. The thing about the original was that as a viewer you felt that Arthur was vunerable and you didn’t mind the petty stuff, but felt on his side when he got dragged into the more dangerous and heavy crime stuff. ‘Lovable rogues’ comes to mind and this is really the concept behind the new Minder, which might mean it still has some appeal as a concept. Someone mentioned that Arthur Daley was built on George Cole’s Flash Harry character in St Trinians. So why didn’t Five cast Russell Brand as the new Daley character. Now that would have been a different Minder from the original.
In contrast, I watched Moses Jones on Monday (2nd February 2009, BBC 2) and that was really gripping, but you couldn’t miss a minute and had to concentrate on every line. This was clearly heavy stuff and like most of these kind of dramas you’re not spared the gruesome visual images of damaged bodies. I shall certainly be watching Moses Jones again and it will be one of my regular Police/Crime/Murder Mysteries dramas along with Trial and Retribution, Midsommer Murders etc. I liked the relationship between Jones and his sidekick (Matt Smith, the new Doctor Who). Will we get fed up with Matt Smith though, if we are exposed to the hair and cheekbones too much before he gets to the Doctor Who moment.
I was disappointed when I read that Wire in the Blood wasn’t coming back, that was a programme that I really enjoyed. This was a programme that like Prime Suspect pushed boundaries in terms of the evidence of real evil that could be shown on the screen. In many ways, I don’t need to see all the blood and rotting bodies, what I liked was Robson Green’s portrayal of Tony Hill and that he didn’t always act as we would expect a police psychologist to act. It was the quirkiness in the character that was attractive and Green had the perfect looks for the part. There was the love aspect – won’t they will they which might never be resolved in the TV programme now.