In general I don't watch a lot of television. And when I do, it tends to be in big, season-long chunks on dvd or streamed on Netflix when I'm recuperating from a hard day at the eye clinic and can't see well enough to read. It's not that I'm a culture snob--one of the shows I DO watch is Drop Dead Diva and another is Grimm--but I still haven't figured out how to balance out a freelance career, a pretty demanding writing-on-the-side career, a personal life and the odd night's sleep. Something had to give and it was television.
I did check out the BBC's Sherlock and liked it well enough, although honestly, I thought Sherlock's behavior in the second season ws a little ... smug. I honestly didn't believe he'd go to Buckingham Palace wrapped in a sheet. But Freeman and Cumberbatch are lightning in a bottle together.
I'm still on the fence about Copper. I know a lot about the era. I once spent about six months researching a script called Dead Rabbit, which was basically Gangs of New York but with two brothers at the center. I thought the first episode was dark and dreary and predictable and on the nose. I liked the second episode better.
But then I stumbled across Line of Duty.It's currently streaming on Hulu (although I suspect it's eventually going to be part of their Hulu Plus package) and it's a slice of grit pie. Martin Compston, playing the lead, a young detective sergeant who refused to take part in a cover-up after a raid leaves an innocent man dead, looks distractingly like a young Mark Dacascos in his Crying Freeman period, but he's extremely good as the button-down cop. Lennie James, the other lead, is a black cop with a complicated love life and a taste for corruption. He's great too.
Sexism. Racism. Budget cuts. It's all there. Two episodes in, we really don't know that much about Kate Fleming, one of the detectives on James' squad, and I'm hoping that will change.
If you liked Dirty Pretty Things, I think you'll like Line of Duty.