Despite a fabulous returning cast, Series 2 of The Split is classy-looking tosh. Very watchable but tosh all the same.
“The last thing we need is for any more salacious details to come out”
Much like Series 1, the second season of Abi Morgan’s The Split treads a line between legal drama and deluxe soap opera and more often than not, it is less of a balancing act and more of a case of elements of the former sprinkled into a heavy dose of the latter.
Which in many ways in just fine. Getting to see the likes of Nicola Walker, Deborah Findlay and Anna Chancellor strutting in expensive contemporary costumery is a blessing in itself and the production values of this show never dip below the glossy magazine standards it has set itself.
And the calibre of the cast means you can’t help but get swept up in the messiness of their personal affairs. Will Hannah choose her hunky continental colleague or her dour husband? Will x y or z retire/have a baby/forgive her sister…Morgan’s writing too often pushes towards the cheesy when it feels like there is the potential for more.
The legal procedural angle is still present, allowing an impressive array of guest stars to dial in for an episode or two. But the insistence on always connecting them to the personal lives of the Sterns starts to get tired, especially as we start following them to school visits (although a pleasant surprise to see a rare screen role for Laura Pitt-Pulford) etc.
But Walker and Findlay, and the rest, are so eminently watchable that The Split never really disappoints. You just have to accept that you’re watching classy-looking tosh.