Crime Scene - - CONTENTS - By An­dre Paine

Se­ries 5 of the ITV drama with Stephen Tomp­kin­son may be its best run yet.

DCI Banks has al­ways been a solid, sat­is­fy­ing pro­ce­dural, which sees the brood­ing York­shire land­scape ac­cen­tu­at­ing the lone­li­ness of the worka­holic cop­per. But the stakes are even higher in this out­ing, fea­tur­ing a sim­mer­ing story arc in which the dogged de­tec­tive (Stephen Tomp­kin­son) is cir­cling property mogul Steve Richards (Shaun Doo­ley). Banks, like for­mer ITV main­stay Morse, has no time for spivvy busi­ness­men, es­pe­cially when they’ve es­caped a mur­der rap. With cases in­volv­ing teenage sui­cide, a mur­der within the Chi­nese com­mu­nity in Leeds and the in­evitable, fi­nal show­down be­tween Banks and Richards, the two-part for­mat builds the sus­pense and keeps you guess­ing. The di­rec­tion isn’t flashy, though there are sev­eral stylish se­quences (in­clud­ing a tense ransom de­liv­ery that doesn’t go to plan) and plenty of pro­ce­dural nitty-gritty, par­tic­u­larly from the de­tails-ob­sessed DI He­len Mor­ton (Caro­line Catz).

For all the en­joy­able fa­mil­iar­ity in meet­ing up with the team again – Banks and DS An­nie Cab­bot (An­drea Lowe) are still try­ing to get to­gether – this is ul­ti­mately a shock­ing sea­son with a hard­hit­ting emo­tional fi­nale. DCI Banks is bet­ter than ever.

Di­mor­ton in full-on ‘wind­ing up Banks by ask­ing ques­tions’ mode.

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