NA­TIONAL TREA­SURE

ACORN Out Now

Crime Scene - - POST MORTEM - By K EVIN HAR­LEY

There are lay­ers of you, aren’t there?” says Julie Wal­ters’ Marie, peer­ing into the face of her co­me­dian hus­band, Paul Finch­ley (Rob­bie Coltrane), in this sharp-edged Chan­nel 4 drama.

The crack cast­ing al­lows those lay­ers and more to be as­sid­u­ously peeled away dur­ing writer Jack Thorne’s foren­sic, fo­cused drama, based upon the sen­sa­tion­al­ist sce­nar­ios prompted by the po­lice’s Op­er­a­tion Yewtree. Coltrane in­vests great nu­ance in Finch­ley, a much-loved stal­wart of British light en­ter­tain­ment who’s ac­cused of rape and sex with a mi­nor. Con­vey­ing both threat and com­fortTV cosi­ness, Coltrane su­perbly sus­tains Finch­ley’s am­bi­gu­ity, which is art­fully framed by Marc Mun­den’s height­ened di­rec­tion and Cris­to­bal Tapia de Veer’s spooked score. Thorne also scrupu­lously ex­plores Finch­ley’s tellingly fraught fam­ily crises (aided by con­trolled work from Wal­ters and An­drea Rise­bor­ough), the pub­lic/pri­vate di­vide, his ac­cusers’ an­guish and his de­fence team’s cyn­i­cism.

Af­ter Finch­ley’s ac­cusers are de­bunked and his TV part­ner (Tim Mcin­nerny) com­mits per­jury, the res­o­lu­tion brings an­swers and also in­flam­ma­tory, cul­ture-wide im­pli­ca­tions.

A land­mark se­ries that’s tense, lay­ered, bruis­ing and de­signed to stick with you.

Rise­bor­ough, Coltrane and Wal­ters por­tray the Finch­leys bril­liantly.

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