DVD Review: UNFORGOTTEN (Seasons 1-3, PBS)

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by Dale Reynolds on May 22, 2019

in CD-DVD

YOU WON’T FORGET THIS

All three seasons of this excellent British DVD/Blu-ray import, along the lines of the many Cold Case series, are first-rate and occasionally heart-stopping, here to be had and enjoyed on DVD.

Starring the ubiquitous Nicola Walker (seen in her glory in MI5; Last Tango to Halifax; River) and veteran Sanjeev Bhaskar (Paddington 2; Indian Summers), the six-episodes-each-season benefits from a strong intellectual arc in the storylines, a separate one for each season.

In Season One, we find the two detectives DCI Cassie Stuart (Walker) and DI Sunny Khan (Bhaskar) trying to unravel a murder from some forty years before, with a number of still-alive suspects. Using stalwart actors such as Tom Courtney (The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner; Billy Liar), Trevor Eve (ironically the star of another Cold Case series, Waking The Dead; Death Comes to Pemberly), Bernard Hill (Wolf Hall; Valkyrie) and other superior actors, the tensions are kept to a high level. It’s always glorious to watch well-trained and sensible actors strut their stuff in muscular material.

In Season Two, Stuart and Khan uncover a — you guessed it — cold case that involves a lawyer, nurse, schoolteacher, and a police officer. But digging up facts confuses the search, leading them to question their assumptions about just who are the victims and criminals. And does punishment match justice?

Season Three: Construction workers find the remains of a sixteen-year-old girl, Hayley Reid, in the middle of a highway north of London. In re-opening the case, our detectives also reopen serious emotional wounds from the mother and twin sister of the dead teen. And this investigation involves a quartet of middle-aged friends: Dr. Tim Finch (Alex Jennings, always a treat to watch); James Hollis, a famous TV presenter (Kevin McNally); Pete Carr (Neil Morrissey), a man on the financial and emotional edge); and artist Chris Lowe, (James Fleet) the most unstable of the group, but with the best future of them all.

Writer/creator Chris Lang has a strong handle on his impetus and the tensions that arise between detectives, cops, and their administrative handlers. The acting is always top drawer making the most of the writing and directing (Andy Wilson). It’s also beautifully shot (Gavin Fenney), always adding dimension to the explorations of this fine team of police.

The Bonus section is also instructive, with an explanation of what the show means to be and the role of social media in informing the authorities on who the victims were and who the perpetrators of such villainy are.

photos courtesy of PBS

Unforgotten
PBS
6 discs | 901 minutes | rated NC-17
released April 9, 2019
available on Blu-ray, DVD, and streaming at PBS and Amazon

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