Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan

The Fall (Season Three)

(UK, 2016)

I re-read my review of the previous two seasons, and saw that I had really been kind. While Season One was very good, and Season Two was pretty good, it only lasted until the last half hour, when it all went haywire. It concluded with some of the shoddiest police work the world has ever seen since Dallas in 1963. People who had been doing smart things suddenly started doing stupid things. Other people died as a result.

So now we begin with the aftermath, when DCI Stella Gibson has to explain the things she did to a board of the Belfast police. And I will tell you, I’d have cashiered her ass, and maybe even brought charges.

The serial killer from last season is in critical condition and, inexplicably, the writer and director decided to spend almost half the first episode in the emergency room, showing the bloody operation and speaking lines that no one outside of medical school will ever understand. I mean … what the hell? Film School 101 will tell you, you show the stretcher wheeled in, then a shot through the window of the sawbones plying his trade, and then he comes out and says “It was touch-and-go, but I think he’ll live.” Total time: thirty seconds, tops. Who cares about how they saved him? Get on with the goddam story!

And who cares if he lives or dies? Well, Stella does, because of getting justice, whatever that means. Justice, to me, is this piece of shit dying on the table. But no, they save him, and install him in a recovery room … a full ten steps away from the woman he kept in a car boot for four days! They should never have put the two in the same fucking hospital, much less the same room. Do they only have one hospital in Belfast? I didn’t know the National Health was that strapped.

Then they leave him unguarded except for a single WPC out in the hall. She’s a very competent cop, but in America there would have been at least two cops outside his room at all times. And he is not handcuffed, not restrained in any way! Later, he is allowed unmonitored visits from his wife and daughter. Stupid! Never! They can visit him in gaol, and talk through a Plexiglas window.

Then there is the fifteen-year-old psychotic girl who loves him, and is able to run rings around all the cops in Northern Ireland. And that’s all the time I need to waste on this horrible disappointment of a TV series. We stopped watching after Episode Two.

(Oh, wait, I just have to add. I went online and looked it up. The last episode has Stella in an interrogation room with the killer, who is again totally unrestrained. She needles him about his mother fixation, or something, and he beats the living shit out of her. Then he hangs himself. That is about as honest an ending as saying “And then a truck ran over them all, and they all died! The end!” What were they thinking?)