Should I Try It: Criminal Record

New Apple TV+ series is a crime drama starring Peter Capaldi and Cush Jumbo
Criminal Record -- Courtesy of Apple TV+
Criminal Record -- Courtesy of Apple TV+ /

In our current big era for content, we have everything from TV networks, streaming services, movies and more. It seems like the only thing that hasn’t gotten bigger is our time. That can leave you wondering whether a new show or mini-series is worth your time. That’s what this “Should I Try It” series is here to help you solve! In these pieces I’ll look at a new program, where to find it, what it’s about and even offer some comparable options to help you decide whether to dive on in or move on!

Series: Criminal Record

Where to Find It: The first three episodes are available on Apple TV+ with new episodes dropping each Wednesday.

What’s It About: This new series comes from Paul Rutman. It’s an eight-episode British crime drama starring Peter Capaldi and Cush Jumbo. Both are detectives. Capaldi is a senior detective with a strong reputation. Jumbo plays a young detective who is still building a reputation. They come together over a cold case that suddenly turns hot.

An anonymous call comes in that seems to provide evidence about a previously closed and solved murder. The caller suggests that there was another killer, one who is still in play. DS Lenker (Jumbo) is assigned the call and it leads her down a road that has her clash with DCI Hegarty (Capaldi). It also leads her to a woman who soon turns up dead herself.

Lenker is convinced there is more to the case. But she clashes with Hegarty, who thinks she’s barking up the wrong tree. Or does he? Will these two eventually come together, or will they remain at odds as the mystery deepens?

You Should Try It If: You’re a fan of British crime dramas, like a good mystery, or enjoy Capaldi and Jumbo.

One Man’s Opinion of Criminal Record

In the past I’ve really enjoyed the original dramas from Apple TV+. I also enjoy a good mystery series, so I was curious to see how this would play out. There’s a great, moody opening here featuring Capaldi that seemed to set the scene. But the rest of the pilot episode, and the second episode after that, didn’t really maintain that same feel and didn’t maintain my same level of interest.

This is certainly a slow build. I have no doubt that after eight hours it will pay off in some way. But the best dramas in this genre find a quick hook—either in the case or in the characters—that keep you invested even as you’re waiting for more answers. I almost got there with an interesting opening scene, but it quickly faded. There wasn’t enough done to build my interest in the case or in these characters in the first two episodes to get me excited.

If you’re a fan of the genre and looking to fill a hole in the TV schedule, this is a well-made series. But I was disappointed in some of the execution. It doesn’t stand out in a crowded TV landscape.

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