Posted: 01/31/2009


Trial & Retribution Series 2


by Del Harvey

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Series 2 of this riveting crime drama from across the pond is actually episodes 5 through 8. The show bears passing resemblance to America’s Law & Order as well as The Shield, for its characters are not only cops and lawyers but are also under the cloth real people with problems, temptations, desires, and self-doubt.

The series Trial & Retribution is a murder mystery series written by Lynda LaPlante, perhaps best known in the States as the author of the Prime Suspect series. Trial & Retribution is a series which typically airs one three-hour story per year, focusing mainly upon the dramatization of the main aspects of the case, including the perpetration of the crime, the hunt for the killer, and the subsequent court case.

The difference setting this show apart from many others appears when the reveal how common it is for cops to date other cops and the difficult situations which arise from those interoffice pairings.

Trial & Retribution boasts a highly stylized look which seems to improve with each new 3-hour episode. The program stars the bulldog-like David Hayman as a no-nonsense cop whose focus upon the crime is so absolute it often leads to the destruction of family and love life. Victoria Smurfit (Ballykissangel, Berkeley Square) is his female counterpart, a woman who matches his tough, eye-on-the-ball style with great zeal. Guest stars in this series include Charles Dance, Simon Callow, Gemma Jones, Ben Cross, and Tim McInnerny.

This box set releases on DVD on March 3, 2009. Its even better than Series 1 and leaves you waiting anxiously for Series 3. Highly recommended.

Del Harvey is the founder of Film Monthly, a film teacher, a writer and a film critic in Chicago.

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