Waking the Dead, BBC1

by | Sep 19, 2005 | All, Reviews

What to say if you liked it

A drama of such complexity that viewers can feel really smug if they have a clue what’s going on

What to say if you disliked it

Rather be Walking The Dog

What was good about it?

• The guest appearance by Georgia Mackenzie as a detective on attachment from Kent. We so love this woman. The sooner she fronts her own series the better.

• Wil Johnson as the big, butch, brooding Spencer. Great muscles.

• The Boyd/Foley double act: Trevor Eve’s increasingly unhinged Boyd is hellish to work for but Sue Johnston’s motherly Grace Foley just about copes – although even she seems to be a bit fed up with Boyd’s foibles. The way they communicate – interrupting each other all the time – makes the working relationship seem very realistic.

• Boyd getting soppy about model planes, using them to explain the intricacies of the case

• Good use of a water tower where a gathering of predatory birds pecked at a dead body

• Grace’s mauve cardigan

• Lovely lighting, marvellous music.

What was bad about it?

• The disjointed storyline (involving poisonous medication, a Heathrow heist, shady Indians and handless corpses) means your attention cannot stray for a second which is not much use for those of us who have to make regular trips to the kitchen to grab a snack

• Boyd thinking he’s funny when he called a mummified body Crispy Duck

• It’s not as enjoyable as it used to be

• Esther Hall’s pathologist Felix, stuck in a moral maze and far too serious about everything.

• The flashbacks. Mel’s dead, move on. Watch Claire Goose’s career collapse like a ladder made out of a flan now she’s gone,

• Nobody asked the simple question: Why were the victim’s hands cut off? Come on Grace, you’re the psychologist. You should know!

• David Walliams in a minor role. Every time he appeared, we were half expecting an outburst of “I’m a lady.”

Luke Knowles

Luke Knowles


Editor of the website and host of the podcast. A general TV obsessive. I've been running the site since 2008 and you can usually find me in front of the TV. My Favourite show of all time is Breaking Bad with Cracker coming a close second. I feel so passionately that television can change the world and I'm doing my little bit by running this site. You're Welcome!


Follow us:

Our Latest Posts:

Borgen proves TV revivals can work.

Borgen proves TV revivals can work.

Borgen is the best political series on television. It's not an area television drama dabbles in that often. There's the original House of Cards and the Netflix version...

The BBC confirm second series of Sherwood.

The BBC confirm second series of Sherwood.

As the critically acclaimed Sherwood finishes its much talked about run on the BBC tonight (28 June) it has been confirmed that it will return for a second series with...


Submit a Comment