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Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Unforgotten Seasons 1 and 2: Memorable



Tina and I just finished binging the first two seasons of Unforgotten on Amazon Prime - via ITV in the UK, where it originated, and PBS in America, earlier this year.  The first season was good.  The second was superb - a police investigation of a complicated case with even more complex moral terrain that offers ethics at its best as an ending.

The premise of the series is something we've seen a lot of on UK television - cold cases, that is, crimes, usually murders, that are re-opened, usually due to discovery of some human bones in a construction site or some other likely or unlikely place.  Indeed, Trevor Eve, who did such a great job in Waking the Dead (2000-2011) as DS Peter Boyd in investigating long dead cases, does a fine job in a very different role the first season of Unforgotten.

The star of both seasons, though, is is Nicola Walker.  We first noticed her in MI-5 (Spooks in the UK), where she was a perfect partner for Harry Pearce in more than one way.  Walker projects a keen intelligence, deep compassion, and moral intensity in both of her characters.   But in Unforgotten, she's in a more-or-less commanding position as DCI Cassie Stuart, or in a position to make her moral choices count.  Meanwhile, she lives with her father and teenage son, both of whom have minds of their own.

Sanjeev Bhaskar is her partner, DS Sunny Kahn.  Despite his name, he can be a little too serious at times, but that makes his smiles and his own humanity even more appealing.   In the second series,  Cassie cracks a baffling case - she no doubt read Agatha Christie (I'll say no more) - but the real payoff comes when she, with Sunny's concurrence, decide what to do about it.

Kudos to Chris Lang who wrote this.  There's been a third series in the UK that has not yet made it across the Atlantic, and a fourth series green lit.  My advice: see them all.

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