"A Confession" | Layered retelling of a crime
Most Indian lovers of crime drama would instantly recall Martin Freeman as an affable Dr Watson to the Benedict Cumberbatch avatar of Sherlock Holmes. His new outing, a starring role, gives Freeman a deeper involvement as a law-keeper in the plot. The tone here is also more sombre in the way it engages.
‘A Confession’ bears the hallmark of well-crafted and layered British television. At one level, the gritty six-part series leaves a slow-burn impact. But at quite another, the story evolves beyond being a mere suspense drama. A cerebral narrative delves into the mind of the protagonist, Detective Superintendent Steve Fulcher (played by Freeman), who is consumed by an obsession to crack the case any which way.
The idea is intriguing because the case in question is a real-life tragedy. ‘A Confession’ accounts Detective Fulcher’s bid to hunt down the killer of a young woman and how it led to glory as well as downfall for the cop.
Fulcher in fact is credited as a scriptwriter of the series along with Jeff Pope. This renders an element of brutal honesty to the narrative, as an engaging chain of events unfold.
The story takes off on an ominous, if unhurried, note. Sian O’Callaghan, a 22-year-old woman, goes missing one Friday night in the town of Swindon. The police get into action and after a few false leads, Fulcher takes in a suspect named Christopher Halliwell (Joe Absolom).
‘A Confession’ overwhelms the impact that it leaves, for the quietness with which it captures pain and anguish without losing its primary focus on setting up captivating suspense drama. This is people’s show if they love their crime thrillers served with sense and sensibility.