Welcome to British Isles Friday! British Isles Friday is a weekly event for sharing all things British and Irish — reviews, photos, opinions, trip reports, guides, links, resources, personal stories, interviews, and research posts. Join us each Friday to link your British and Irish themed content and to see what others have to share. The link list is at the bottom of this post. Pour a cup of tea or lift a pint and join our link party!
Last week, I reviewed the guide book Walking Jane Austen’s London. Sim shared casting news for an eight-part adaptation of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials. Tina reviewed a novel set partially in WWII Italy and partly in 1970s England, The Tuscan Child. Becky reviewed a biographical graphic novel about a couple raising a child in World War II and beyond, Ethel & Ernest. She’s also been listening to radio dramas, including one of Christie’s Poirot stories. Nancy joined us for the first time with a review of the book Brit(ish) about race and class in modern-day Britain.
A couple of weeks ago, when I reviewed the TV series Collateral, I mentioned how much I enjoyed the actor Nicola Walker. Both Sim and Gaele recommended that I watch Unforgotten, an ITV series that has shown in the US on PBS’s Masterpiece. Both seasons are currently available at PBS Passport, which came free with the membership to my local PBS station.
Thanks so much, Gaele and Sim! I really loved this one.
I recommend paying attention at the beginning. I had to go back and re-watch the first fifteen minutes of the first episode because I was watching on my computer and trying to do other things at the same time. It’s not the sort of show that works well as a backdrop to other activity. A lot of characters are introduced quickly and it isn’t until much later that their presence is understood.
Each three-episode season is devoted to a particular case. The first begins with a skeleton found in a cellar and the second with a skeleton found in a suitcase recovered from the River Lea. So, these aren’t fresh cases. The detectives are thwarted by cold trails and deceased witnesses.
Nicola Walker plays DCI Cassie Stuart and Sanjeev Bhaskar plays DI Sunny Khan. I recognized Bhaskar from The Indian Doctor, a show that my husband enjoyed at a time when I wasn’t watching much TV. The relationship between DCI Stuart and DI Khan is fun to watch–professional, but also sweet and funny.
One of the things that I loved the most about this series were the long location-setting shots. We see the Shard, Tower Bridge, Stonehenge, and Brighton Beach, among many other recognizable English settings. I probably should be watching more travel shows given how much I like to see these sites — travel without jet lag!
Wikipedia says that a third season is in the works. I’m looking forward to that!