Third-episode verdict: Prime Suspect

The CarusometerA Carusometer rating of 2

In the US: Thursdays, 10/9c, NBC

So here’s one of those vexing shows that comes along every so often. Prime Suspect is well made, it has a good cast and it has strong scripts. Characterisation is a bit flunky, sure, and any similarity to the original UK series disappeared after the first episode, but it’s still a very good procedural. And I do love Maria Bello.

But despite its getting a good score on the Carusometer, I have absolutely no interest in watching any more episodes of this show whatsoever. It doesn’t really do much that’s new at all. Bello’s tough as nails, glad-not-to-be-a-mother, hard-drinking female cop is reasonably different from most other female cops. But any hint that the show was going to challenge institutional sexism mostly went during the first episode and disappeared altogether in the third episode, Bitch, where it was shown that the basic problem was Timony’s grating personality rather than misogyny on the part of her colleagues. Although we now actually have a prime suspect each episode, each case is closed before the end of each episode with minimal effort. It’s just unremarkable.

So although I’m sure, if you’re the kind of person who likes a well executed, episodic police procedural, this will work for you, I’m going to give it a miss from now on.

Carusometer rating: 2
Rob’s prediction: Dead by the end of the season


  • Rob Buckley

    I’m Rob Buckley, a journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of although you might have heard me on the podcast Lockdown Land or Radio 5 Live’s Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I’ve edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for TV producers magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it “web site for urban hedonists” The Tribe. Since going freelance, I've contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network, TV Scoop and The Custard TV.

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