From the creator of Luther, Hard Sun is a BBC drama over six episodes which are all available as a box-set on the BBC iPlayer site.
This time, it’s the apocalypse which looms over the characters who are tackling gruesome and inventive murderers and spree-killers. Each of the key protagonists is fighting their own demons, with the stories interweaving with the grand conspiracy theory around the impending Hard Sun.
From episode one, the paranoia is cranked up high. Elaine Renko (Agness Deyn) is involved in a vicious fight with a brutal ending before the credits roll. The other main character Charlie Hicks (Jim Sturgess) has his own suitably gritty back story which unfolds over the season.
As these unlikely and uncomfortable detectives work together, they face into the secret service, headed by the brilliantly dark and detached Nikki Amuka-Bird as Grace Morrigan from MI5. Morrigan is both delicate and brutal at the same time, with the most menacing quiet voice I’ve heard for quite some time.
As the episodes unfold, the impending rumours of some apocalyptic future fuel some quasi-religious and cultish crimes for the duo to solve, whilst managing their personal issues and the secret services bearing down on them.
I enjoyed Hard Sun, in places, it was a touch overacted but the stories clipped along at a good pace and the direction generated some suspenseful scenes. The casting was good, especially Nikki Amuka-Bird who was thoroughly nasty – even a final episode where we see her humanity has moments of real menace.
There is a comparison with other dystopic views of the near future, and Hard Sun stands up well against others like Black Mirror.
I’d recommend Hard Sun as a good binge watch. The BBC do this stuff really well, and this is no exception. At the very least it will tide us over until Luther comes back.
Overall. 7/10. BBC iPlayer.