In last night’s new series premiere of Hustle, Robert Glenister, Robert Vaughn and Adrian Lester returned as con artists, Ash ‘Three Socks’ Morgan, Albert Stroller and of course, Mickey.
The story goes that following his stint in Australia – selling the Sydney Opera House to a duped punter – Mickey returned to a London that was full of new faces and missing a few old ones…
The new plotline has the very real credit crunch as its backdrop and while the majority of the nation are tightening their belts, there are still a greedy few who are getting ever richer, and in some cases, from others losses.
These unscrupulous nouveau riche make the perfect marks for the best ‘grifter’ in the business, and Mickey is keen to put new and inventive long-cons into action to part them from their wonga.
However, Mickey’s crew had become rather disparate and in some cases, desperate, in his absence too. Ash was back to pulling short cons while Danny and Stacey were grifting their way across the US.
Mickey’s old friend and mentor, Albert, was locked up serving two years for gambling fraud but he was having the time of his life inside, with pet screws and every home comfort his Yankee heart desired.
However, the practice of the long con is in his blood and Albert told Mickey that he had a new mark in his sights who seemed to be ready and waiting to be relieved of piles of cash so, with Mickey as coordinator, the start of another elaborate con was underway.
This time, the mark was an obnoxious young woman, Sara Naismith, who’d made a killing in dubious property developments, all of which had trampled roughshod over laws and morals in order to earn the lady her large profits.
Now, at this point, there were more plotline ins and outs than a fiddler’s elbow, and to explain the plot would take about six years. That being the case, if you missed it, you can catch up on BBC iPlayer.
Tony Jordan, writer of the show, could be one of the most prolific criminals this country has ever seen if he wanted to go that way. The hustles he masterminds for this awesome cast of actors to play out are as intricate as the lace on an old Belgian lady’s corsetry, and no less impenetrable. Were I to attend a party with Tony, I’d lock my wallet in the safe and assume that he’d steal the bubbles out of my Boli even as I drank it.
I tried to get one step ahead of the plot, I really did, but I couldn’t. It kept me guessing until the very end when it was revealed that Albert had in fact done some double dealing that would’ve shamed the Cold War Russians.
Sara Naismith and her assistant Aaron – our Deano from EastEnders, played by the gorgeous Matt DiAngelo – turned out to be Emma and Sean Kennedy, brother and sister con artists who were set up by Albert to pull a con on Ash and Mickey.
All four were unaware – until near the end – that they were all marks, fake ones of course, as engineered by Albert to make a new and razor sharp crew. Emma reckons she can drink Ash under the table and beat Mickey at poker. They reckoned she and Sean are rough around the edges but have potential, and if they say so, I believe them!
What did you think of the opener to the new series?