mccallum

Details


Produced by ITV, 1999. First and last episode of McCallum without the original McCallum John Hannah. Nat plays Dan Gallagher.

 



 

Plot Summary

The new kid is in town and it starts to make trouble, right from the beginning. Dan Gallagher is doing things very differently from the way his predecessor managed his stuff. He's bringing in new colleagues. The old staff isn't too fond of his new style. But one thing becomes very clear, he is a pathologist with huge experience and with a good hand for his guys. Too sad that Dan has a very sinister case right at the start what makes things extra hard for him: His assistant is being killed, the morgue is being ransacked by weirdos, a female corpse is being found in a bonfire, some students obviously don't know what they are doing and Dan is falling in love with a beautiful lady. One surplus, the inspector that's supposed to help him isn't quite convinced that Dan isn't the weirdo who's causing all this mess. His former boss is being accused of a sexual relationship with a student, not too much of help from this side for him neither. All of this sums up and finally it becomes clear that Dan is the target of all these threads. Only within the last minutes, after being attacked himself, does he and his friends find the clue to where his girlfriend (who has been kidnapped) might be found. They are able to find her and the murderers - only to see them commit suicide right before their eyes.

General Review

Yes, it's the first and the last episode without John Hannah. I'm not doing a discussion on the episodes with Hannah's McCallum, that would lead too far. What is to be said about this very last episode of McCallum is one thing: IT IS DARK, I'm not saying that this is because it's supposed to be sinister. But one might get the impression that Berlin Alexanderplatz (R.W. Fassbinder) was some sort of idealistic thought for this one. Huge parts of this episode display the morgue and is showing a lot of the interiors. The last scenes have been shot on a cemetery - of course - at night. In short: you're not going to see much sun here... Dan Gallagher is the newcomer and he has to strive in order to earn his respect from the others. But he is doing well, showing a lot of interest in their problems and little faults. The plot is pretty wild stuff, but that's no news to McCallum fans. The finale is great and leaves you nailed to your seat right to the end. This is good TV-entertainment, not for the whole family of course. Alas, I would have loved to see more tempo in the middle of it. One of the big disadvantages of this episode is that the writers have tried to tell two things at once: introducing the new doc and writing a hell of a good crime-story with some very dark characters. That's one step too far. Just imagine Star Trek TNG without Patrick Stewart in the middle of Season four, just when things started getting interesting both in plots and in human relationships and suddenly you're getting a new captain.

Nat Review

Ohhh, what an impossible task. Nat has done well to make it very clear. Unfortunately he wasn't (and could not have been) what Hannah fans wanted to see: Hannah! Watching this episode I had to grin, honestly. What we can observe here is Nat trying so hard to live up to everyone's expectations that he isn't quite himself. He's even looking somewhat tired all of the time. Of course it's hard to be relaxed and appear to be relaxed with a plot like this and with a heritage like this. Plus: It's not a very nice topic he's dealing with here. But what I do miss is a little irony here and there. There's no sign of distance between Nat and his role, he's being very tense. Well, things have to be lived through once, in order to get other things perfectly right (see Inspector Lynley).

Trivia

Well, well, good to see familiar faces: Gerard Murphy is the Inspector here, in Vanity Fair, he's Nat's counterpart. Dan's girlfriend Arkie Whiteley is in real life a very good friend of Nat's wife, Anna Patrick.

Status

A McCallum DVD edition is out in the UK and the USA, containing the special "Beyond Good And Evil".

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