Catch up TV reviews: The Suspect, Late Night Mash
James R | On 05, Sep 2022
The Suspect (ITV Hub)
Aidan Turner. Those are the two words that ITV viewers will be remembering this week, as the Poldark star takes the lead in a new crime drama based on Michael Robotham’s novel. He plays Joe O’Loughlin, a clinical psychologist who suddenly becomes famous after talking a suicidal cancer patient down from a window ledge. That leads him to become recruited by DS Riya Devi (Anjli Mohindra), who’s working with DI Vince Ruiz (Shaun Parkes) on a brutal murder and needs help understanding who might have done it. But, of course, Joe has secrets of his own and what begins as a fun but familiar procedural spirals into a character study that leaves us wondering whether our hero is something much more sinister.
The result is inevitably cheesy and more than a little contrived, but the cast sink their teeth into it with confidently straight faces, and the script zips along at a pace that will keep you returning for each new episode. And, at the heart of it all, Aidan Turner is a brilliantly untrustworthy figure with a beard that deserves its own spin-off.
The Suspect is on ITV on Mondays at 9pm.
Late Night Mash: Season 2 (UKTV Play)
A blonde woman stepped into the big seat of power this week, as Rachel Parris took over the hosting of Late Night Mash on Dave. If you thought that was a reference to Liz Truss, the show’s one step ahead of you, with an extended gag at the opening of this new season comparing the two. Followed by a surreal routine about Nadine Dorries, it’s a great starting point for a show that remains determined to do its own thing. If you’re worried about a topical comedy series lacking teeth or trying to tackle both sides of the proverbial fence without becoming generic in its neutrality, Season 2 of Dave’s revived satirical series is a reminder that you can be even-handed and still talk bluntly about the problems the country is facing.
Special guest Joel Dommett makes a funny and pointed impact as a weatherman trying to warn the country about the climate crisis – while Steve N Allen and Ellie Taylor talk obliviously BBQs and leaving patio furniture out in the rain – and Helen Bauer delivers a spot-on parody of a wellness expert. Kumar’s loud and brash deadpan in the hosting seat is missed, but that’s partly because he doesn’t get to deliver a double act with Parris anymore – and the chance to see her going solo, easily dispatching one-liner monologues and bantering with interviewees, is more than worth tuning in for. A disappointment segment about The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power descends into crude, easy toilet humour, which only highlights the smarts on display elsewhere. Pitched somewhere nearer Chris Morris’s The Day Today than Have I Got News for You, Late Night Mash remains a distinctive voice in topical satire that will hopefully be back for a third season.
Late Night Mash is on Thursdays at 10pm.