TV Review: Annika (Series 2, Episode 1)

Annika is persisting with its fourth-wall breaking but more Nicola Walker on our TV screens is rarely a bad thing

“Can I put blu-tack on this screen?”

A quickie for the return of Scottish crime drama Annika, back for a second series on Alibi after its first made an appearance on BBC’s iPlayer almost two years after its initial airing (what even is TV programming any more!). It follows the work of the Glasgow-based Marine Homicide Unit, headed up by Nicola Walker’s DI Annika Strandhed who naturally takes any and every opportunity to get on a speedboat and look moodily into the middle distance before solving the crime of the week.

This first episode offers up essentially more of the same, except with a greater dollop of interpersonal goings-on for the team…always a bit of a tricky area. Between pregnancy, promotion opportunities, PTSD and paternity questions, there’s a lot to cover which pretty much overshadows this particular case of a brutal drowning which they only know about because of a mobile phone video. Though such is the interplay between the team, uncharacteristically I didn’t mind it so much at all.

That’s probably the power of Nicola Walker who for me, can do no wrong. Even whilst waxing lyrical about Scottish folksongs directly into the camera, I’m bewitched. Jamie Sives’ Michael is charm personified though it remains to be seen how long that lasts after revelations are finally made, and Katie Leung and Ukweli Roach each impress as the younger members of the team. As their DCI, the great Kate Dickie is underutlised once again but I guess you can’t have everything… I look forward to the rest of the series.

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