(Series 16, ep.13) A few years ago, you wouldn’t have put money on Jac Naylor being the maternal type. Indeed I remember remarking on the trauma likely to be faced by Ric’s grandson Jake because the first face he saw was Jac’s. Not because it isn’t a beautiful face (it is), but because it has a default setting of Terrifying.
In this episode, in the final moments before Jac gave birth, we got to see what kind of mother she’s going to be, and it’s glorious. I’ll be honest and say I was primed to cry from the outset in this episode, but I became tearful very early at the sight of Jac’s face when she told Mo that the baby “likes lights.” It was like a little window into a whole relationship that she’s built up with the baby during the pregnancy. She talks to her, not in the “yummy mummy” way she despises, but in her own quirky way, telling her about the scientific reason for a red sky at night, educating her about the importance of numbers. I can imagine that Jaccy Maccy Junior’s life (if she gets to have much of one – and I’ll be devastated if she doesn’t) will be full of as many chemistry sets as dolls, as many trips to science museums as funfairs. It’ll be a no-bullshit upbringing, but one full of love and care. Jac might tell her child that a red sky is just caused by a refraction of the light, but they’ll both be up early the next morning to see how lovely the dawn is. Continue reading
I’ve tried. I really have. I’ve watched all of the current series of Lewis. There’s much to recommend it – a fine cast, the warm architecture of Oxford, some witty dialogue (at times), and the legacy of Inspector Morse always lurking in the background in a faintly comforting way. There is one problem though, and it’s a big one: the plots are ludicrous!
I know it’s Sunday night drama, and that means nice scenery and a reassuring murder or two, but each episode seems to have an average of four deaths, and every time the action centres on another college. Don’t they have any crime in Oxford that isn’t university related? Imagine the media coverage that would follow the events of any typical week in the life of Lewis, let alone the twenty odd (and I mean odd) murders per series. Yet they seem to operate without any press coverage whatsoever, shrugging off another set of bizarre and disturbing crimes with a cheery pint and a matey quip.
I do quite like Lewis (Kevin Whately), and Sergeant Hathaway (Laurence Fox) is an interesting character whose police gimmick (they always have a gimmick) is that he’s clever, having studied theology at Cambridge. The relationship between the two is affectionate, and one of the strengths of the series. I do wonder, though, how they always manage to solve these crimes completely on their own. In other police dramas, there are teams of detectives working on each case, with technical support, a geeky computer whizz kid, and a shouty superior officer. None of that in Oxford. You get Lewis and Hathaway, Lewis’ love interest, the pleasant pathologist Dr Hobson (Clare Holman), and the excellent Rebecca Front as Lewis’ boss (they never seem to reveal her rank) but who seems to run the department with the air of a benign head of sixth form – never any shouting, swearing or venturing more than five feet from her office. Continue reading