Law & Order UK: 705 – 706 Review
Reviewed by David Selby.
The Seventh Series of Law & Order UK must really have been thoroughly planned out beforehand. The leitmotifs have been clear almost from Day One: the significance of the father-figure, the consequences of neglecting your duty of care, of sinning out of desperation/revenge; of compunction, of a genuine dilemma –
Take it however you like. The beauty of fiction is that every writer must ultimately relinquish meaning over his or her ideas, and it’s up to the audience to take them; to connect with them. And I could connect with Law & Order better than ever before.
The fifth episode, entitled Mortal, began with the death of an elderly woman. Some inexplicable questions were raised: why did her clock go missing at the same time as the murder? What motives do any of the suspects have for taken the woman’s life? The sixth episode (Dependent)’s Law denouement was perhaps more clear. In the finale, a gay father is found murdered with his adopted son missing. From the moment we were introduced to the mother, it was blindingly obvious that her and the father were involved. However, who made the final blow to the head? When the easy questions are answered, it’s up to Order to scrutinise the trickier ones.
I’ll state it simply: the case for Mortal was my personal favourite. It felt unwinnable, because it was truly perplexing. Both sides were being manipulative; placing the blame, both defended by good lawyers, both swaying the jury. It did seem at one point as if no verdict would ever be reached.
Dependent was good. It relished most of all in its development of Kate Barker’s character; an individual so willing to get involved in other peoples’ person lives. It’s fitting that the finale got involved in hers. Her story was genuine and believable, albeit slightly coincidental.
D.S. Ronnie Brooks shone the most. As a (failed) father, his ability to relate to the case and maintain professionalism was astonishing. Despite his misdeeds, in this series, the man was an inspiration. His final act of the episode, handing Kate her sister’s address, encapsulated his character development over the whole of the series. He wasn’t made to do it, but he did it because he could.
The one criticism I have is that the finale seemed to abandon what had been an interesting arc. I’d have rather seen more focus around Jacob Thorne, given the incredibly poignant ending to Mortal. You also had the ‘loose end’ with Ronnie and his daughter, how the job has affected Sam Casey’s personal life, and the characters’ regrets in general. It was a good enough episode, with enough twists and turns to keep it up with the rest of the series – but it didn’t really feel like the finale.
Episode 5 ‘Mortal’ Verdict: 9/10
Episode 6 ‘Dependent’ Verdict: 8/10
It’s been another enjoyable series of Law & Order UK – perhaps one of the best. I look forward to Series Eight when it inevitably materialises.