Not too long ago, the folks out at Acorn Media sent out a copy of Prime Suspect Series One for me to review. And while Acorn has sent out a whole lot of prime drama for us previously, you’ll find that this particular batch is on par with some of their best.
Prime Suspect follows DCI Tennison, who’s out to solve a murder. Tennison’s been bucking to get charge of a murder case for quite some time, and now Tennison’s finally got the opportunity. But as Tennison will rapidly discover, this murder may not just be a murder, but rather a beginning. A beginning of something much larger: a serial killer, and quite possibly, a cover-up within the police department itself. Will DCI Tennison survive this newfound promotion? Or will Tennison not live to collect the enhanced pension?
Sounds pretty straightforward, until you consider that DCI Tennison is played by none other than Helen Mirren, who is pretty much the center of awesome in the known universe as far as actresses go. And DCI Tennison is taking charge of a murder investigation back in a time when murder investigations simply were not headed up by women. Thus, Tennison’s going to be taking on the department just as much as the possible serial killer, as the department very clearly does not want her there.
But even better, it’s not really this simple. There will be plenty of good twists and turns involved with this one, as only British drama can present them. Crime drama is always pretty good; British crime drama is an order of magnitude above that. Folks, if you liked CSI or all those other crime dramas, then frankly, you owe it to yourself to at least check out Prime Suspect Series One.
It’s a lovely, extensive piece of work that’s nicely put together, and is elevated at least a couple notches by virtue of having Helen Mirren around. There’s even some nifty extra stuff showing Tennison’s home life, which is a nice aside from all the murder and mayhem going on elsewhere. It’s some surprisingly fun stuff, and amply worth the three hours twenty-seven minutes you’ll have to invest in it to watch it all.
The Screenhead Ten Scale, meanwhile, gives Prime Suspect Series One an eight out of ten for being some top-notch crime drama, backed up by an overwhelming British influence and the sheer raw awesome that is Helen Mirren. Crime drama fans, you’re in for a great time here.