Did we like it?
We’ve been tiring of formulaic US dramas (your Law & Orders, your CSIs, your Without A Trace), but this one remains compelling and fresh – aided by the fact that it can travel back in time to reopened unsolved crime cases.
What was good about it?
• Kathryn Morris as lead character Detective Lilly Rush, although she looked a bit gaunt and pale in the series three opener, getting to grips with the 1988 death of a high-school jock minutes after delivering his child in the toilets during his school graduation bash.
• Danny Pino provides some nice eye candy as the lovely Latino Scotty Valens, the best of Lily’s sidekicks. Her colleagues also include a cheery black guy, a cynical fat guy and, new this season, an ambitious young girl.
• Setting the series opener in 1988 meant we got some great British music: Always on My Mind by the Pet Shop Boys at the Class Of ’88 Party, Depeche Mode, Howard Jones and OMD during the sad bits and Peter Gabriel for the deep and meaningful bit. Plus the awesome Together Forever by Rick Astley.
What was bad about it?
• The schmaltzy bit at the end can get stretched too long. We presume once the story is over, the men in the audience are supposed to head off to the fridge for more beer while the women weep alone as every bit of emotional juice is squeezed out of the plot.
• They’ve introduced an unnecessary spilt-screen technique in which we’re given four shots of exactly the same thing, suggesting the director couldn’t be bothered to make a decision.