TV REVIEW: The Stranger – Season 1

Lawyer, Adam Price’s (Richard Armitage) world is shattered when a stranger (Hannah John-Kamen) reveals to him that his wife, Corinne (Dervla Kirwan) has been keeping a secret from him. When Adam confronts Corinne she disappears sparking a desperate search that will lead Adam deeper an deeper into the secrets of his whole town.

If that wasn’t enough, an alpaca has been decapitated in the woods, there’s a naked unconscious teenager in the hospital and Adam’s attempting to keep his client, Martin’s (Stephen Rea) house from being demolished.

The Stranger has blown up with loads of people encouraging me to watch it so I couldn’t help but jump in. I can absolutely see why so many people were fans. It moves really fast, more and more interlocking secrets are revealed and there are great characters played by excellent actors. The cast includes Joanna Lumley, Anthony Head, Paul Kaye and Siobhan Finneran on top of the ones I have already mentioned.

While I was watching the series, I couldn’t stop. I was dying to know all the secrets and how everyone connected together and what the next big reveal would be. I loved the chemistry between detective Johanna Griffin (Finneran) and her partner, Wesley (Kadiff Kirwan). I also loved her relationship with her best friend, Heidi (Lumley).

And then I got to the end and it was absolute bollocks and it made me start thinking and as soon as I thought too much the whole thing fell apart. I have a lot of questions. There are so many things that just don’t hang together. I don’t think the stranger’s motivations actually really make sense and although Katz (Paul Kaye) is desperate, I’m not sure I believe his shoot first, think later approach to things. The final stitch up would never stand up from a forensic perspective. There are so many strings just left untied… like what happened to Katz’s daughter?

I wouldn’t call this bad television but it also isn’t anywhere near as clever as it thinks it is. Ultimately there is a lot of style but very little actual substance.

Meh.

2.5/5

6 Comments

  1. I’ve seen the trailer for this show a few times. I love stories with lots of secrets, and this was on my list of “not sure” if I want to watch. Reason being, when I saw the decapitated head of the alpaca, I got concerned it was about people who murder and sacrifice to some devil god or something. Anyway, if the secrets don’t tie together in the end, then it’s not worth it.

    Thanks for the review.

    1. The alpaca is a very small part of what happens. I think the secrets do tie together. I’m just not sure the character motivations do.

  2. Thanks for letting me know, Abbi. I might have watched that! 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.

    1. There are much better things you could watch.

  3. I have tried to start this twice now, it just doesn’t capture me in. I can’t with this. I will probably skip it… I have You to keep me company me anyway, which I also haven’t finished yet. 😀

    1. You actually is way more compelling than this.

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