The makers of Holding – the key new collection shot in West Cork – are clearly aiming for a mix of wacky humour and crime drama within the story of a lacking native. The problem is that up to now they’re not coexisting peacefully.
This story of a chilly case homicide in West Cork, based mostly on Graham Norton’s bestselling novel, is leaning in on the eccentricity – however as evidenced in episode two, that’s a tone that’s not straightforward to get proper.
The actual winner on this fledgling collection up to now is the area. From the smallest boreen to the widest overhead panorama, West Cork basks within the sunshine and is rising as very a lot a personality within the present.
Our protagonist is PJ (Conleth Hill), a vibrant garda based mostly in West Cork who’s extra used to coping with minor native disputes than extra severe crimes. Still, a shadow is looming over the fictional West Cork village during which he lives.
Almost twenty years earlier native man Tommy Burke disappeared, with the group presuming he had moved overseas following a romantic drama within the village.
But when the stays of a male are found on his property within the first episode, locals are satisfied there’s a assassin of their midst. Suspicion in episode two falls totally on Bríd Riordan (Derry Girls’ Siobhán McSweeney) who has briefly hotfooted it out of city herself.
PJ is on pleasant phrases with Bríd, who has a drink downside, and is aware of she’ll be thought to be a suspect having been jilted on the altar by Tommy. He was having an affair earlier than he broke her coronary heart and went lacking.
Other characters who could know greater than they’re letting on embrace no-nonsense housekeeper Mrs Meaney (Brenda Fricker) who appears uncomfortable with the Detective Inspector (Clinton Liberty) who’s staying at her property, and feisty native Evelyn Ross (Charlene McKenna) who’s eager to level the finger at Bríd.
Tonally, Holding episode two is chaotic, making handbrake turns between a way of drama and pathos to wacky humour in a manner that feels strained and uneven. It jarred, and this has a distancing impact with regards to changing into invested in character and story.
Perhaps the present will discover this steadiness, nevertheless it’s as a drama that the present has the potential to ship extra. There are loads of characters and their secrets and techniques to get to know on this quirky whodunnit. Not least of them is PJ himself, as he goals to string collectively the small print of Tommy’s disappearance – solely to come across some new proof that throws the whole investigation into doubt.