CARDS on the table, as Alex Drake said last week.
Episode three of Ashes To Ashes, screened tomorrow night, is my least favourite so far.
It’s nothing to do with the subject matter – the treatment of rape victims and prostitutes in the 1980s.
More linked to some uncharacteristic leaden lines, a few unconvincing scenes, plus an altogether odd feel to a generally slower paced episode.
Having said that, it’s still not to be missed – and I did like the episode more after re-watching it a second, third and fourth time.
There’s an extract from Larry Grayson’s Generation Game via the TV in Alex’s second floor flat above Luigi’s.
Also more of the fleeting light that appears to be linked to Alex’s daughter Molly.
We meet the 1981 version of Molly’s godfather Evan White.
And there’s that already discussed fancy dress party, as well as Alex’s Joe Bugner moment.
Plus some more music tracks from 1981 and before, including one of my personal favourites highlighted at the bottom of this blog.
The good news is that next week’s fourth episode is another cracker, with the first of what I suspect may be several shocks for Alex (Keeley Hawes).
There’s an interview with Marshall Lancaster, who plays DC Chris Skelton, in tomorrow’s MEN.
Update: The online version of the feature is here.
For those who want to read on, here’s some of the material I couldn’t squeeze into tomorrow’s feature on Macclesfield actor Marshall.
Otherwise scroll to the bottom of the page and press play.
Marshall Lancaster Extras:
I asked Marshall if he thought Chris would ever be promoted.
“I don’t think that’s ever going to happen,” he smiled. “Although he’s keen to learn, isn’t he?”
His thoughts on the speedboat on the Thames scene in episode one?
“The speedboat was ace. We kept getting told to stop smirking because we were going to rescue Shaz – but the corners of our mouths kept turning up slightly.
“That’s one of the bonuses of moving down to London. You couldn’t have done that along the Manchester Ship Canal, could you?”
His memories of 1981?
“I was born in 1974, so I was about seven or eight in 1981. It’s funny, I remember a lot of the music – Prince Charming and all those – because my mum played them, probably until 1988. So a lot of the music still is quite nostalgic for me.”
Was he disappointed not to get a perm?
“No, not at all,” he laughed. “There was talk of a mullet and I probably could have gone down that road. But I think Dean drew the short straw having the perm.”
Has Chris matured in the eight years since 1973?
“It’s funny because he still has the ‘Chris-isms’, if you like, the silly lines, and he’s not always on the ball.
“But even though he’s still stupid, he’s still efficient. He’ll still find the missing person in the file that you’re looking for.
“It’s a fine balance but he has grown up. We’ve not aged in any way. So it’s a bit strange. But it’s not real. It’s in Alex’s mind…isn’t it?”
On working with Philip Glenister.
“He’s cool, isn’t he? He’s a real gent, to be honest with you. He’s very nice to work with. He’s cracking a joke all the time.
“He’s not like Gene Hunt at all, but he just turns it on. As soon as that camera turns over, he becomes this Gene Hunt monster.”
Has he spoken to John Simm?
“He texted now and again and we give him our best wishes.
“We sent him a picture of us all with the shades and the guns, obviously, just to wind him up. But he’s fine. John’s in good spirits and he wishes us all the best with this.”
Marshall A Plaster Master
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