BBC Review: Line of Duty Episode Two Review
B Van Heusen
Jed Mercurio’s Line of Duty episode two had the kind of cliffhanger ending that makes you wish you had a time machine so you could travel to next week and see what happens next. The episode as a whole was action packed and thrilling as DS Steve Arnott quickly built a strong case against the too-good-to-be-true DCI Tony Gates.
After a less than awe inspiring performance in episode one, Martin Compston as Arnott is growing in stature and developing into the kind of character that you want to root for. However, no one can hold a candle to Lennie James (Gates) whose intense performance is head and shoulders above everyone else. Vicky McLure (Fleming) and Neil Morrissey (Morton)-in that order – are the only other cast members who have come close to matching James’ performance level. The big disappoint has been Gina McKee and we now know that she won’t be back for episode three unless it’s as a headless torso. McKee is undoubtedly one of British TV’s best actresses but she usually plays social reforming goodies. In Line of Duty she was tasked with playing a business woman/gangster and she fell short. If she was trying to be low key it didn’t really work because Jackie Laverty seemed to have no personality at all. Was she stoned? was she just dull or was she a zombie? If she was any of the aforementioned, how could she have realistically plotted to kill an accountant and successfully created a crime empire? Polly Walker or Nikki Amuka-Bird would have been better suited to the role but miscasting apart I am eagerly awaiting episode three!
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