Granite Harbour (2022)

I really really really wanted to like this cop show from the BBC. The title alone is great and I love Aberdeen, so what could go wrong?

Quite a lot, so it happens.

Davis Lindo has left the military police in Jamaica to join Scotland Yard as part of a diversity-training program. Hours after arriving in the granite city an oil magnate is Murdered and there are a plethora of possible suspects from an upset employee to his own brother. Can the police solve the murder? Will Lindo prove himself in this new life?

It’s a walking set of cliches and even that’s an understatement. The plot twists aren’t twists, the characters are all as rounded as a piece of cardboard and the acting is…um. I have seen it described as akin to a midday drama, like Doctors, or something. But its worse than that. At least the Doctors had conviction; these actors here are struggling to come to terms with whatever they’re saying. They’re reading scripts as if they’re picturing themselves on TV, emphasising the wrong words. They’re not acting, they’re saying lines. The only actor with any kind of gravitas about him was killed off – the man from Game of Thrones who looks a bit like Colin Baker. Aye, him.

The direction: egads! Many a moment passed where the camera lingers too long on a character, or doesn’t cut away when it should. I allow newbies to find their feet or what not, but prime BBC drama is renowned for its quality and this falls short.

Ach nah it’s not the worst. It’s actually quite fun to watch them struggle with a poorly written script and stumble over dialogue that feels like a translating AI has screwed up big time.

As many people have pointed out in the reviews, Aberdeen looks glorious. The drone footage of the city does it justice; in fact you spend the three episodes looking forwards to the bits when theres nobody on screen, just granite buildings, boats, shoreline and landscapes.

But I don’t want a second series, so that’s saying something. However, if we do get a second season i will watch it, so thats also saying something. Quite what its saying i don’t know – probably that i’ve got a strange sense of humour.

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