Case Sensitive – The Other Half Lives: Darren Boyd and Olivia Williams Get Closer in Part Two

by Matt D

In my review of the first episode of Case Sensitive I mentioned that a lot of what was going on was incredibly predictable and indeed as Ruth was arrested for the murder of her ex-husband it was clear that she didn’t do it as anybody whose arrested halfway through the investigation will turn out not to be the killer. In fact it transpired that Charlie arrested Ruth once she discovered that she’d visited ex-husband Jason on the day of the murder however it was simply for one last sexual encounter which he thought meant she wanted him back, well you would wouldn’t you? She didn’t so again he got angry and, as we saw in the last episode, went down the pub while at the same time a rowdy hen party was going on so it would be possible that somebody could slip in unnoticed. While the police nabbed Ruth I had to wonder why Charlie didn’t watch the CCTV more thoroughly as it provided them with a vital clue to solving the murder.

Obviously the whole investigation initially occurred because Ruth’s current fiancée Aiden revealed that he’d hurt somebody named Mary Trelease and his actions had caused her death. Confusingly though the woman that Ruth caught Aiden hugging was Mary Trelease and she was very much alive however her mother, who she was named after, was the Mary in question. After some digging Charlie and Simon found out that Mary Trelease Sr. was the step-mother of Aiden and was a violent alcoholic who often lashed out at her daughter so her new step-son had to step in to protect Mary Jr. against her mother’s attacks. As the case played out I personally found everything a little weird and far-fetched, which is allowed in a crime drama I suppose, however in Case Sensitive everything seemed a little stranger than normal though the final chase scenes were fairly well shot.

I’ve come to the realisation though that Case Sensitive really isn’t about solving the crime but rather about the relationship between Charlie and Simon. Last time there was some insinuation that there were feelings between the pair which was confirmed after they ended up in bed together. I wasn’t a fan of their liaison especially since the scene before saw her hurl an offensive insult at him but maybe he just saw that as foreplay. My main problem was there was no real build-up to this encounter instead we just saw them on the morning after when they both agreed that it was a one-off. If Case Sensitive was rolled out to a series of six episodes, which I think it should be, then I would’ve had less of an issue with the two getting together if it had been aired in the final instalment but I believe this wasn’t much of a pay-off after only 90 minutes of will they/won’t they action. I suppose what we’re waiting for now is if they will become a proper couple as it seems that she wants to but he doesn’t however I suspect that that moment will be saved for the next two-parter whenever that happens.

There was something about Case Sensitive that made me a bit uncomfortable and spoilt my enjoyment of it but I’m not quite sure what it was. Perhaps it was that it’s a lot more foul-mouthed than say Lewis is plus there was even a bit of nudity so at times I felt that I was watching an HBO programme rather than a primetime ITV1 drama. I also found both of the lead characters were fairly alienating and cold which meant that I found them harder to connect with despite the great performances from both Darren Boyd and Olivia Williams. It’s fair to say that most TV detectives are fairly stand-offish but there’s still much to like about Vera or Lewis while after two episodes I wasn’t really taken with either Simon or Charlie in fact I found it quite amusing when she told him that people have emotions as she really hadn’t demonstrated any feeling whatsoever throughout the course of the programme. I also found Case Sensitive slow-moving, and not in a good way, it was almost as if they didn’t have enough material to fill just under two hours of programming so they padded it out with longer, duller speeches.

As far as I remember I quite enjoyed last year’s Case Sensitive double-bill however this time around I found it dull and rather uninvolving. The central case run out of steam towards the start of this second episode while the relationship between Charlie and Simon was spoilt after they spent the night together. In its defence the acting was great on the whole, especially from Eva Birthistle who actually made me care about Ruth, while I enjoyed the atmospheric piano music that accompanied some of the scenes. Overall though I was disappointed by Case Sensitive and I wonder if ITV are just producing so much crime drama that now it’s all becoming slightly repetitive.

What did you think to Case Sensitive? Did you enjoy more than I did? Leave Your Comments Below.