30 March 2015

TV Crime Log: Gracepoint, Thunderbirds & Vera

Now this doesn’t happen very often, so make a note of this. We’ve got three shows for you, and they’re all on ITV. True, you’ve seen them all before in one way or another…

GracepointAdventures in time and space are nothing to the timey-wimey sense of déjà vu that David Tennant must have had filming Gracepoint, the US adaption of Broadchurch. I believe, at one point, Tennant was filming both at the same time.

However, that’s not going to be a problem going forward. While the UK mothership marches on to its third series, this US-version kind of took a tumble off a big cliff in the ratings, which is why it now turns up on ITV Encore. Encore is a channel for stuff you’ve seen before, which in a sense is true with this particular drama.

However, we are assured that Gracepoint—which also stars Skylar from Breaking Bad, Nick ‘48’ Nolte and Jacki ‘Kingdom’ Weaver—takes some unexpected turns, threading new storylines through the familiar Broadchurch narrative. This time the action and the angst is transported to a small Californian seaside town.

You can see that on ITV Encore on Wednesday at 10pm.

Thunderbirds Are Go!Also turning up on ITV Five! On Saturday night Four! Just around tea-time Three! Is a very old favourite Two! Fifty years later One! Thunderbirds are Go!

These days, the Tracy Bros –- named originally after the Mercury astronauts—look like they should be forming their own boyband rather than flying hugely-expensive pieces of high-tech kit into disaster zones. The two pastimes are not mutually exclusive, of course, but both careers are quite time-intensive.

However, some of the trailers for this have been quite beautiful, with the series opting to use a mix of CGI animation and live-action model sets. Twenty-six 30-minute new episodes of the Gerry Anderson classic have been produced, and the first is on Saturday at 5pm.

Whatever happens—whatever you think of someone rebooting a beloved part of your childhood—just remember that it simply can’t be as bad as that obscenity of a movie they made a few years back.

Rosamund ‘Gone’ Pike is Virgil—no, wait, I read that wrong, she’s Lady Penelope—and original cast-member David Graham is back as Parker, so that’s all good.

VeraAnd then we come to Vera – on Sunday at 8pm - an ITV ratings warhorse, which I’m sure, in the words of some of the kids around here, is totally boss. I confess I’ve simply run out of things to say about Vera. Bear with me. I’m going to have to sit here for a few moments and wrack my brains.


No, nothing. Sorry.

Except to say that in this one DCI Stanhope investigates a suspicious fire that rips through a holiday park on the Northumberland coast. Three cabins are destroyed and the body of a woman is found inside.