In Deep-Season 2 (2002)

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Released 1-May-2008

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Crime Main Menu Audio & Animation
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2002
Running Time 470:10
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Multi Disc Set (4)
Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Colin Bucksey
Roberto Bangura
Paul Marcus
Studio
Distributor

Beyond Home Entertainment
Starring Stephen Tompkinson
Nick Berry
Carli Norris
Case Slip Case
RPI $29.95 Music Paul Bartholomew
Joe Campbell
Paul Hart


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    In Deep is a rarity among BBC police dramas, in that I cannot recall it being shown on local television here in Australia before being available on DVD. I may be wrong of course but I cannot remember this show being shown on the ABC or any other free-to-air network. Considering its high quality and well known cast this surprises me somewhat. All three seasons of this show were shown in the UK, starting in early 2001. Two have so far been released here by Force Entertainment with the third season due in July. The format of the show is two-part episodes which combined run to somewhere near two hours, slightly longer in this second season. The second season contains four of these two-parters (each one on its own DVD9 disc).

    The basic premise is that these episodes follow the various cases taken on by a two-man team of undercover cops, Liam Ketman (Nick Berry, Heartbeat) and Garth O'Hanlon (Stephen Tompkinson, Ballykissangel). This season sees the introduction of a third member of the team, Kelly (Carli Norris), a bi-sexual fellow officer. She is a bit headstrong and lacking in experience. One of the first surprises, considering the cast and their famous earlier roles is that this show is gritty, violent and takes on story lines which other shows shy away from, such as paedophilia. Accordingly, it has been given an MA15+ rating by the OFLC. The next and very pleasant surprise is that this show avoids the soft and easy endings which afflict many cop shows. Rather than the main characters always getting the win in the end, they struggle to get results, do things which may not be approved of by the ethics committee and certainly don't come away unscathed (mentally or physically).

    Having said that, the show is not perfect as sometimes the writing is a little lacking in exposition or includes unlikely coincidences. These issues, however, can be ignored as this is an entertaining, thought provoking and very watchable show featuring two fine performances which are pretty much against type for these actors. The addition of Kelly to the team does not always work.

    Liam is a married man, with two teenage children. He struggles to hold his family and marriage together due to his demanding and very secretive job. Garth on the other hand is a loner who is estranged from his family and tries not to let his personal life interfere with his work. He does not always achieve that aim and his mental state can be quite variable as the demands of the job weigh on him. Both of them suffer in different ways due to their career choice. In this second season both Garth and Liam face even tougher personal and health issues.

    The episodes included in this series are:

  1. Untouched (117:21) - Guest starring Ian McShane. Liam, Garth & Kelly investigate a drug importation ring led by Ian McShane's character. They try to catch him out by posing as drug dealers themselves and leveraging his family.
  2. Jekylls (118:00) - A new DCI moves into a 'No Go Zone' for police and promises to break the hold over the area by an ex-footballer who now runs a protection racket. When the DCI gets shot dead, Garth, Liam & Kelly must move in, posing as dodgy watch distributors to try and find the killer. One of them gets seriously injured.
  3. Blood Loss (116:35) - A media baron's grandchildren are kidnapped and the team must pose as security consultants to solve the case.
  4. Abuse of Trust (118:14) - Liam is struggling with his inner demons and a case involving a sexualised serial killer drives him to the edge.

    I would certainly recommend this series to those viewers who enjoy the grittier end of UK cop shows such as The Ghost Squad, Cracker or Prime Suspect. I for one am looking forward to Season 3 with interest.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality is decent but no more.

    The show is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio, 16x9 enhanced, which I would guess is the original aspect ratio.

    The picture was not overly sharp and appears somewhat grainy throughout, with no low level noise. The shadow detail was decent. The grain sometimes became mild macro-blocking especially in backgrounds. The overall bitrate was low.

    The colour was reasonable but somewhat pale. There was colour bleeding, especially from light colours.

    Artefacts included edge enhancement, some white spots & splodges and some minor aliasing.

    There are no subtitles on these discs.

    Layer changes occur during each show however they are not obvious.
    

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    The audio quality is fine.

    This DVD contains an English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo soundtrack encoded at 192 Kb/s.

    Dialogue was mostly easy to understand but the lack of subtitles was certainly felt in some scenes.

    The score is slightly overbearing at times but not offensive.

    The surround speakers were used for some atmosphere when played via Pro Logic II and the subwoofer was not used.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

    No extras.

Menu

    The menu is simple, featuring some music and the ability to select scenes.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    As far as I can tell, this show has not been released on DVD anywhere else in the world.

Summary

    A gritty, bravely written and well acted BBC cop show.

    The video quality is decent.

    The audio quality is fine.

    No extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, using Component output
DisplaySony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer

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