Tropical getaway turns into the holiday from hell in BBC Three’s mythic Maori thriller
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EVer heard the one about the elegant Chinese script tattoo that translated as “soggy pork buns”? Kyle, the London lad at the heart of BBC Three’s new supernatural drama Tatau, has all those stories beat. After all, how many backstreet ink jobs can claim to have potentially apocalyptic consequences?
“Kyle has this Maori tattoo put on almost as a fashion statement, but realises it has a much deeper significance that he was completely ignorant and unaware of,” writer Richard Zajdlic tells Red Alert. “But boy is he not ignorant and unaware of it by the end!”
Tatau is the brainchild of Zajdlic, a British screenwriter making his first foray into genre telly with this eight- episode, New Zealand and Cook Islands- set murder mystery steeped in Maori culture. It follows Kyle ( Joe Layton) and Budgie ( Theo Barklem- Biggs), two party- hard best buds who quit their jobs to travel the world, stopping off at the Cook Islands to soak up some local culture. Things soon turn sour when Kyle discovers a dead body while snorkelling in a lagoon, only to later learn the aquatic corpse is very much alive and well. Not only that, the Maori- style tattoo he had back home is earning him some funny looks from the locals…
The show was shot almost entirely on the