TV Review: Trigger Point (Series 2)

Series 2 of Trigger Point verges a little too close to the ridiculous to be as effective as the first season

“Danger is all around, often from unlikely sources”

I loved the campy silliness of the first series of bomb disposal drama Trigger Point but kinda knew that if it were to return for a second, it would struggle to maintain its level. After all, over six brutal episodes [series 1 spoilers follow], Vicky McClure’s Lana Washington saw both her bestie and her brother blown up in front of her and discovered that the bloke she was shagging on the side was responsible. Where do you go from there?

Well, Estonia initially. A six month secondment training Ukrainian bomb disposal experts to be precise and within hours of her arrival back in London, Lana is swept up once again in a fast-paced bombing campaign in which no-one is safe, particularly if they have any connection with her. Killing off characters unexpectedly is often a boss move but it is used with such frequency here it’s rather hilarious instead of being as harrowing as it should be.

It’s also farcical how many times Lana is pushed to the floor by the force of a bomb that has gone off next to her and yet still continues to work every job as if she’s the only effective member of her team. The other major problem here is similar to what Silent Witness experienced in its earlier series: how do you insert a character who is a specialist in one area into the wider thrust of a police investigation?

Daniel Brierly’s writing doesn’t really square that circle, just having her constantly flout rules and regulations in a way that is scarcely credible for someone in a job so dependent on fine margins and precision. Hints of PTSD are suggested but under-explored, again begging the question why no-one has stepped in and put her on leave if only for a day, or even just torn a strip off her for being so objectionable.

Altogether, Trigger Point remains watchable in its daft and dangerous way but it doesn’t come together in quite as compelling a manner. Julian Ovenden’s new Commander Francis is a scarcely needed thorn in everyone’s side but Natalie Simpson’s DS Morgan is effective as the lead investigator who also happens to be the new partner of Lana’s ex Thom, the cuddly Mark Stanley. And everyone should have a best pal like Kerry Godliman’s Sonia, an under-rated player in both series now.

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