Monday, 26 March 2012

My Murder, DCI Banks, Justified 3

Danny (Malachi Kirby), Samantha (Simona Zivkovska), Shakilus (John Boyega). Pic: BBC
BBC3 is showing My Murder tonight (26 March, 9pm), a factual drama telling the true story of Shakilus Townsend, the 16-year-old boy lured to his death by 15-year-old Samantha Joseph. Shakilus was smitten with the girl, but she betrayed him to her ex-boyfriend and his gang. This hard-hitting, sad story was written by Levi David Addai and is produced by BBC Current Affairs. This story is given added power and poignancy by the real-life testimony of Shakilus's mother, Nicola.

• DCI Banks with Stephen Tompkinson will be back, a new series of three two-stories having just been commissioned by ITV. I must admit the attraction of this series and its leading man has passed me by entirely (though the books are terrific), but followers of CrimeTimePreview have made it perfectly clear in their comments that Tompkinson is 'tremendously sexy' and 'appealing'. In the first of the new stories – 'Strange Affair' – we gain more knowledge of Banks’s family, his parents, Arthur (Keith Barron) and Ida, and his brother, Roy, a roguish wealthy businessman, who becomes embroiled in the case.

Endeavour, the Inspector Morse prequel shown in January, was such a hit that there is no surprise in ITV announcing that it will return. There will be four two-hour episodes, filming on location in Oxford later this year. Shaun Evans will return as Endeavour, along with Roger Allam as his boss DI Fred Thursday.

• ITV1 is also making The Last Weekend, which will also star Shaun Evans. Blake Morrison’s  psychological study of male jealousy takes place over one hot Bank Holiday summer weekend. Rupert Penry-Jones, Genevieve O'Reilly and Claire Keelan also star.

• And ITV has also commissioned a drama based on Ruth Rendell's 13 Steps Down.

Justified series 3 hits 5USA on Wednesday, 28 March, at 9pm. This is the coolest cop show on TV at present, with Timothy Olyphant superb as the lawman with the itchy trigger finger. Boyd Crowder is out for revenge as the series starts, following Ava's shooting at the end of the last series.

• So it seems the next series of Luther could be the last, as creator/writer Neil Cross prepares a cinema version of the maverick, unorthodox detective. I've just reviewed Cross's brand new novel, The Calling: A John Luther Novel, which is a prequel to the first series. The review is over on Shots, the crime ezine.