Prime Suspect Review: Watch Jane's Heart Melt

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Whoa.

Just when I thought Prime Suspect was going to serve up a bland case on "Underwater," the series went and shot a little girl... and I inched towards the edge of my seat.

Jane at Her Best
“Underwater” was a bit of a departure from the standard Prime episode, smartly dealing with the at-times toxic relationship between Jane and Reg by placing them into an unknown area and forcing them to work together; while putting the rest of the cast on the backburner.

However, it is nice to see that no matter how heated the arguments get between these partners, they can put their differences aside and work together as a team to protect a little girl.

Speaking of working together, the shootout in the hotel room was intense and very well done. Over the course of watching this drama, I’ve realized how scary and scarce these gunfights the police have to deal with are, and when they decide to write one into the story it grabs your attention and sends adrenaline pumping through your body.

The scenes at the hospital were moody and bleak when Jane had to deal with the cop who murdered the little girl’s parents, particularly the scene when she recognized him as the murderer. The standoff as the elevator doors were closing was chilling, as was watching the sets get bleaker and darker as the danger escalated.

Of course, there are some clichés that refused to die this week, such as the adorable little girl who softened up the hardened Jane to the point of shedding a tear or two, but I’m more than willing to overlook it since it was a very nice moment... and I may have shed a tear as well and yelled at Jane to take her home. Maybe.

Everything came full circle by the end of the episode as Jane and Reg shared a few well-placed barbs at each other after being told in a polite way by the local sheriff to get the hell out of his town.

Overall, I can only hope Prime Suspect ends strongly since it was effectively cancelled this week by NBC. It’s sad that a show that’s gotten this good never found its audience because there’s a lot to love here, but this is NBC and it’s a good day if they can pull in ratings better than their cable cousin USA.

Other thoughts:

  • I didn't see any Nicotine Gum this week, but Reg had a cigar so that counts, right?
  • I'm taking a wild guess here, but I think Luis is the guy with the stuff.
  • I really missed Augie's wit.
  • How dumb was that deputy? Did he really expect to get away with murdering three more people after the hospital staff sees him escort them down there?
  • I wish we could have gotten a scene at the end with Jane, Matt and his little boy.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
  • 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.9 / 5.0 (36 Votes)

Nick McHatton is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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I just found out this show -- my favorite -- was cancelled. Maria Bello does a great job, even though she's following Helen Mirren, who was wonderful in the original series. I liked the cast and writing even better than the British Prime Suspect, and don't understand how such a great cast can have found so few viewers. The writing in so many current (yet popular!) police procedurals is so trite, and the acting so bland. Reg, Augie, the Lieutenant, all those guys and Jane were creating such a strong, great story. Is it possible they could be shifted to USA? Southland was pretty good, but this version of Prime Suspect was so much better....an incredibly thoughtful, and rewatchable, TV show. Just how shallow are we Americans becoming in our TV viewing??

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The best show to come along in a very long time. Actual well developed characters and story lines so it's no wonder that NBC cancelled it, after all they are the same network that cancelled Southland to put Jay Leno on every night at 10:00pm and we all know how that turned out. It seems "The Must See TV Network" can't really see very much.

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This show has everything going for it. Suspense, heart, great dialogue and a foundation that can grow. It is the only program that can actually appeal to both sexes and make one feel as though you are at a theatre watching a good movie. Each episode intensifies and you care more about the character that the week prior. The one with the little girl was one of the best programs I've ever watched on tv. My husband and I were riveted to the intensity of the hospital scene, the home where Jane and her partner are shot at, and the drive to the hospital where Jane prays over the girl. My heart was breaking, as it was the most heartfelt moment on television I've ever witnessed. Everything about Prime Suspect is terrific and I can only hope that it will be renewed, if not, by this network, certainly some other one. It is a winner!

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Great show - please do not cancel

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love this show. would hate to see it cancelled, one of the very few series on network TV i've liked/respected in decades besides L & O. lots to work with here, acting and camerawork superb. scripts uneven but could've found a voice. the prime suspect here is of course the transnational corporate mentality to cancel before the audience has a chance to discover the show.

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Hate to see this show cancelled. It is the one show I look forward to every week.

Nick m

Great comments everyone! I agree with all of you, although we'll have to respectfully disagree Shari about Jane's home life, and I hope NBC can find a place for Prime Suspect. I won't be reviewing last week's episode George, I, unfortunately, wasn't feeling well. If you'd like to know my thoughts I'll post a few quick things about it here though, no problem.

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This show should have be named prime Pen!s envy suspect lol. Another stupid feminist anti-male show gone. I couldn't stop laughing at this little four foot nothing female tying so hard to walk, talk and dress like a man. To see her beating up on a big hulk type of guy was just a little to much to believe lol. Super sad case of pen!s envy by both female and liberal male viewers of this show. lol

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This was a pretty tense episode all the way through. The hospital scene was filmed almost like a a horror movie with the dark hallways and the flickering lights. I bought Jane getting close to the little girl, especially since in the last episode we learned she had to help raise her little sister when her own mother died. And it led to the great reveal scene of the deputy as the killer. Jane knew immediately by the girls reaction that she recognized him. I do have to disagree on your last point though Nick. I don't miss Matt,his son and his ex one bit. I think the show flows much better without them. It's a shame we won't get another season as the show has vastly improved from the pilot and first few episodes.

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Are you going to review last week's episode: Wednesday's Child.

Prime Suspect Season 1 Episode 7 Quotes

Luis: How vague?
Jane: A guy walking out of a room vague?

Do you ever arrest someone up here or do you just write parking tickets?

Reg
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