Critical Condition: Prime Suspect – Tennison

Prime Suspect – Tennison | TVNZ 1, 9.45 Sunday


➢ “A distractingly stylish Jane Tennison is just one of the problems with this period prequel, which fails to step out of the shadow of the original series … It is entertaining enough; sensibly, not all the men are misogynist monsters, the sexism instead seeping like a miasma through everything, so you may well find yourself coming back for more. Hopefully the plot and script will thicken, even if we are unlikely to see prime Prime Suspect’s like again.” — The Guardian.

➢ “As the credits rolled, one couldn’t help wondering if this damp squib of a series will get consigned to a wooden box and carried off to the great TV scrapheap in the sky. If it is to return for a second series, it needs to raise its game considerably, get a smarter script and somehow make the underused [Stefanie] Martini a worthy predecessor to the magnificent Mirren.” — The Telegraph.

➢ “The stories inside Prime Suspect: Tennison hold up because they are gruesomely complicated (the murder of a 17-year-old girl that hardens Tennison) and ambitious (mob shenanigans in the B storyline that also serve to slowly hone Tennison’s deductive skills, which are innately there when we meet her). As a stand-alone series, this might be a letdown, but as the beginning of a separate journey and an ongoing exploration, it’s full of promise.” — The Hollywood Reporter.

➢ “This is a softer, needier, less certain Jane Tennison than the one we’ve come to know through [Helen] Mirren’s portrayal, but the seeds of what she will become are already there … In all it touches, Prime Suspect: Tennison is clear-eyed but never cold-hearted. An origin story with a difference, it’s well worth making time for.” — Sydney Morning Herald.

➢ “Young Jane isn’t our Jane, she’s just a character called Jane Tennison who’s younger than the Jane Tennison we know. She doesn’t seem to have much personality and there’s no sense that she’s a barrier-breaker. Mirren’s Tennison left our screens more than a decade ago. I’d be thrilled if she were to return in 2017 in a new story. But as someone we don’t know who’s a lot younger? No, not bothered. ” — Radio Times.

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3 Responses to “Critical Condition: Prime Suspect – Tennison”

  1. Phil, Can I ask what’s happened to Monday night’s episodes of Blue Bloods? Have TV3 decided a “mid season” break (after episode 7) is in order and we will get to see the rest of the season in a few months? Or worse, it’s been dropped from the schedule full stop? Can you let me know the situation?

  2. No, Three is sticking with Blue Bloods, which returns next week. The Valley pre-empts it for just this week. Three seems to be making a stronger commitment to dramas it once would have dropped if ratings faltered, such as Blue Bloods and Hawaii Five-O. Here’s the blurb for The Valley: “Three in association with Fairfax presents The Valley, a documentary exposing the untold stories of war and the potential secrets that have been covered up, screening on Monday 21st at 9.30pm on Three. The Valley focuses on the idea that truth is potentially the first casualty of war and this is what the team are determined to find out as they go to the ends of the earth in search of answers. It bares the question around what our soldiers have really been doing while representing New Zealand in war torn countries and who secretly knows what has been hidden from the public eye. Two battles and two untold stories will be revealed.”

  3. Thanks, Phil, a worthwhile documentary giving an insight into this subject. I will give this a watch, it’s a sensitive topic especially in the light of global events. Glad to hear your comments around Three’s commitment to dramas. I watch both of your references so I’m happy to hear it looks like these are they staying in the schedule.

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