As Yorkshire detective Ronald Craven investigates the murder
of his daughter, the world around him spirals into a combination
of political conspiracy, secret service machinations and shady
mediaeval societies. As he draws closer to the dangerous inner
sanctums of organised environmental protests and nuclear power
interests, he discovers the ultimate truths at the heart of
of Darkness was
first broadcast in 1985, and starring Bob Peck and Joanne
Whalley, Michael Wearing's creation won nine awards including
six BAFTAs. It's not difficult to see why.
originally bought this release a number of years ago when
it was thrust onto the market by an independent label that
hadn't got a clue how DVD worked. The print used was awful
with plenty of dropout and the editing between discs was appalling
- the action would suddenly stop and you would have to flip
the DVD over to the other side.
the rights have finally reverted back to the BBC and they
have turned out a pretty impressive release. As well as the
six episodes, there are a number of extras (including an isolated
music track - which is great for all us soundtrack buffs out
there) There is a Bob
Peck interview on BBC Breakfast Time; The BAFTAs 1986
- including interviews with Bob Peck and Joe Don Baker; BBC
Arts programme Did You See ...? reviews Edge of
Darkness; Magnox - The Secrets of Edge of Darkness,
featuring contributions from writer Troy Kennedy Martin, producer
Michael Wearing, composer Michael Kamen, the cast, technical
advisor Walt Patterson and visual effects designer Mat Irvine;
and the Broadcasting Press Guild Awards 1986, featuring interviews
with producer Michael Wearing and actor Bob Peck.
extras are interesting - especially the many interviews and
review programmes were the host openly admit their lack of
knowledge on the show - which is shocking! If you are interviewing
an actor isn't it in your interest to see the show he's there
to talk about?
show itself was a masterclass in how to present quality drama.
There really has been nothing like Edge of Darkness
since it was originally screened. The only similar piece of
work I can think of is Alan Bleasdale's 1991 G.B.H. for
Peck (who later went on to star in Jurassic Park) and
Joe Don Baker (who went on to play a CIA agent in James Bond)
are perfect in their respective roles. It was also strange
to note that Zoe Wanamaker seems not to have aged at all and
there is a very, very brief appearance by Mac (Red Dwarf
Captain) McDonald as a drunk CIA agent.
was also some unintentional humour in a scene with Tim McInnery,
when he tells Bop Peck that his daughter didn't use his nickname:
"She didn't call me Tel. She called me darling..."
which, a few years later became his name in Black Adder
when he played Captain Darling.
release has been a long time in coming, but the wait was worth
the while. A classic.
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