Series 4 of Wire in the Blood takes a severe left turn with the loss of Hermione Norris’ Carol and the over-inflation of Robson Green’s Tony Hill
“A loss of sense and a loss of empathy”
Change is inevitable, especially in long-running TV shows, but Series 4 of Wire in the Blood really doesn’t cope well with the unexpected departure of Hermione Norris’ DCI Carol Jordan. The interplay between her and Robson Green’s clinical psychologist Tony Hill was one of the show’s strong points, a useful counterbalance to the darkness of the crimes being investigated and in opting to go in another direction with the arrival of Simon Lahbib’s DI Alex Fielding at the head of the Major Incident Team, this proves a less enjoyable series to watch.
To be clear, it’s nothing to do with Lahbib, she actually does really well in settling into the role and her place in the team, although being forced into a too-quick journey from sceptic to convert about Tony’s talents does denigrate the character somewhat. As the real problem is the show’s lionisation of Tony as a character whose brusque misogyny comes to the fore (ostensibly as a reaction to having to deal with someone new). It just sits really badly against the ethos of the show to this point (plus the return to a previous plot development in the final episode feels really lazily done).
The choice to adapt one of Val McDermid’s original stories for once pays off dividends in ‘Torment’, a brutal episode that features a corking guest turn from Siobhan Finneran and great work from Emma Handy’s DC McIntyre (although the lack of follow-up on her experiences is disappointing). The religious tinges of ‘Hole in the Heart’ are cleverly done too, but overall this is a big wobble on the road for Wire in the Blood.