Vexed

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Vexed
Vexed (TV series) titlecard
Second series title card
Genre Comedy-drama
Police procedural
Created by Howard Overman
Starring Toby Stephens
Miranda Raison
(Series 2-)
Roger Griffiths
Ronny Jhutti
Nick Dunning
Rory Kinnear
(Series 1)
Lucy Punch
(Series 1)
Composer(s) Willie Dowling
Ray Harman
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 2
No. of episodes 9 (List of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) Jill Green
Simon Wilson
(Series 1)
Chris Sussman
(Series 2-)
Producer(s) Eve Gutierrez
Carolyn Parry Jones
(Series 1)
Editor(s) Charlie Phillips
Cinematography Tim Palmer
Peter Robinson
Running time 55 - 60 minutes
Production company(s) Greenlit Rights Productions
Eleventh Hour Films
Broadcast
Original channel BBC Two
BBC HD
Original run 15 August 2010 (2010-08-15) – Present
External links
Website

Vexed[1] is a British comedy-drama, police procedural television series for BBC Two. Created and written by Howard Overman, the first series stars Lucy Punch as D.I. Kate Bishop and Toby Stephens as D.I. Jack Armstrong, a detective duo with a fractious relationship. Jack is lazy and disorganised but charming whereas Kate is efficient and usually exasperated by Jack's way of doing things. The show also starred Rory Kinnear who plays Kate's husband Dan, with whom she is going through marriage counselling. Other recurring characters are Naz, an eccentric crime scene specialist, and Tony, owner of the bar at which the characters relax. The drama is set in contemporary London.

In the second series (first announced on 18 January 2012) Lucy Punch and Rory Kinnear did not return. Lucy's character was replaced by Miranda Raison playing D.I. Georgina Dixon, with Nick Dunning playing her father, a retired policeman with a dubious security business.[2][3]

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

The series was filmed in South West London, in particular Kingston upon Thames, Richmond on Thames, and Twickenham, with some of the second series filmed in Ireland [4]

The first series was produced by Greenlit Rights Productions and the second is produced by Eleventh Hour Films.[3]

During the UK transmission of the programme in July 2010, it was reported that Greenlit had entered administration.[5]

The theme tune for the series one was composed by Willie Dowling, former keyboardist with rock group The Wildhearts.

Critical reception[edit]

The series received an arguably mixed response from critics.

The Liverpool Echo '​s Paddy Shennan called it "deliciously black" and added that it could become a "cop classic". He also praised Stephens's performance, likening it to Leslie Nielsen's in The Naked Gun.[6] The Guardian '​s Sam Wollaston also liked it, saying "It's cheeky, irreverent, puerile, sometimes inappropriate It also made me laugh, almost out loud a few times, and that's no bad thing in a comedy" and again praised Stephens's acting, saying he was "fabulous", while Punch's performance was "excellent".[7]

Most others disagreed. the Metro called it "rubbish" and said Stephens's acting was "over the top"[8] The Daily Telegraph '​s Patrick Smith lamented its "Thuddingly lame humour",[9] Paul Connolly in the Daily Mail added that the programme didn't seem to know what it wanted to be but "What it most certainly wasn't, was funny".[10] Rachel Cooke of the New Statesman called it "atrocious".[11] "Truly abysmal" said Kevin Myers of the Irish Independent [12] Sean Myers blamed "a sub-standard script totally lacking in style and imagination".[13] and Damien Love of The Herald (Glasgow) said it was "Bad beyond belief... one of the worst things I have ever seen on television.",[14] and likened Toby Stephen's performance to "Hugh Grant doing an impression of Ross Kemp, doing an impression of Hugh Grant doing an impression of Bodie from The Professionals", although he believed there was a chance that Lucy Punch was "wasted" in the show.

Episode list[edit]

Series One[edit]

# Title Directed by Written by Original air date UK viewers
(million)[15]
1 "Episode One" Matt Lipsey Howard Overman 15 August 2010 (2010-08-15) 2.56
When three single women are murdered and the only link is their Loyalty program purchases, Kate is set up as a potential victim to flush out the killer. The use of Loyalty program records proves both good and bad for Jack and Kate's love lives, career paths and their relationship with each other.
2 "Episode Two" Matt Lipsey Howard Overman 22 August 2010 (2010-08-22) 2.09
Jack and Kate find themselves entering the world of therapy when a depressed banker, with many enemies, being treated at a private rehabilitation clinic is targeted by a hit-man and their investigations lead them to look for the killer amongst the other patients.
3 "Episode Three" Matt Lipsey Howard Overman 29 August 2010 (2010-08-29) 1.90
The high profile kidnap of a girl band member, Gemma G, puts an uncomfortable spotlight on Jack and Kate when the ransom drop goes wrong and suspicion falls on the band's publicity seeking manager Richard Anderson.

Series Two[edit]

# Title Directed by Written by Original air date UK viewers
(million)[15]
4 "Episode One" Ian Fitzgibbon Chris Bucknall 1 August 2012 (2012-08-01) 1.77
DI Jack Armstrong and his new partner, bright fast-tracker DI Georgina Dixon come together at a car showroom where top salesman Karl Mercer is found dead in the boot of a car. The suspects are all employees of the car dealership from sales staff to mechanics and Georgina is exasperated by Jacks casual attitude and he is annoyed by her determination to solve their first case together.
5 "Episode Two" Ian Fitzgibbon James Wood 8 August 2012 (2012-08-08) 1.31
The mismatched detectives investigate the murder in a university library of student Laura Edwards who is studying gender studies. Jack goes undercover as a mature student to aid their investigation of the tutors and students and the complicated world of gender politics. In their private lives Georgina meets her perfect man and Jack obsesses over his girlfriend, Danielle, to the amusement of Georgina with his descriptions of their relationship.
6 "Episode Three" Ian Fitzgibbon Chris Bucknall 15 August 2012 (2012-08-15) 1.10[16]
Demoted to "missing persons" for a week, after Jack had defaced the Chief Constable's poster, Jack and Georgina investigate missing solicitor Ted Finch. When his body turns up in the river the detectives have to determine if it is suicide, murder, or an accident by checking into his life at home, work, and the last place he was sighted, the gym. Georgina's father unexpectedly appears as a crime prevention consultant.
7 "Episode Four" Kieron J Walsh Jack Williams & Harry Williams 22 August 2012 (2012-08-22) 0.89[17]
When the front runner contestant, Alison Clarke, on a cookery show is murdered Georgina goes undercover to solve the murder from suspects numbering the other contestants and the hosts of the show Robert Randall and his assistant Sue Goretti. Georgina takes the contest seriously and Jack takes advantage of her cooking skills to enhance his love life.
8 "Episode Five" Kieron J Walsh Steve Coombes 29 August 2012 (2012-08-29) 0.91 [18]
When the headmaster of a hugely popular local primary school is murdered by a knitting needle in the neck Jack and Georgine quickly arrest one of the last five mothers to see him that morning. Realising they may have made a mistake further investigation reveals the headmaster was taking bribes from the mothers wanting their children accepted by his school. The school secretary is poisoned and Jack mesmerised by one of the mothers does not realise he too has been poisoned. Georgina's father announces he is divorcing her mother.
9 "Episode Six" Kieron J Walsh James Wood 5 September 2012 (2012-09-05)
The unconventional detectives investigate a robbery from the safe, at a family-run jewellery store, of a diamond belonging to a famous footballer. The thieves knew the combination, an inside job, so all the family and staff are suspects. Jack is distracted by an invitation to be best man at his brother's wedding, an invitation with a sting in the tail from a brother he despises. Georgina has problems when she experiments with online dating and is overwhelmed by the response.

Series two of Vexed was broadcast Wednesdays at 9pm at the same time as the London Olympic games. Episode five was broadcast at the same time as the opening ceremony of the London Paralympics games.[19]

DVD releases[edit]

Series One was released by Acorn Media UK on 20 August 2012. Series Two was released exclusively by Acorn Media UK on their website in December 2012 and was released elsewhere on 4 March 2013. Series One and Two boxset was released by Acorn Media UK on 8 July 2013.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Vexed means irritated, annoyed, or distressed. See Wiktionary
  2. ^ "Vexed - Production Details & Cast and Crew". British Comedy Guide. 2012. Retrieved 12 August 2012. 
  3. ^ a b Grant, Suzy (18 January 2012). "Vexed is Back in Production". BBC Comedy Blog. Retrieved 12 August 2012. 
  4. ^ End credits of second series.
  5. ^ Jordan, Eilis (18 August 2010). "Independent producer Greenlit enters administration". business-sale.com. Retrieved 12 August 2012. 
  6. ^ "TV Review: Vexed (BBC2)". Liverpool Echo. 21 August 2010. Retrieved 23 August 2010. 
  7. ^ Wollaston, Sam (16 August 2010). "TV review: Vexed and Stephen Tompkinson's Australian Balloon Adventure". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 23 August 2010. 
  8. ^ "Vexed will leave you wondering what Howard 'Misfits' Overman is up to". The Metro. 15 August 2010. Retrieved 23 August 2010. 
  9. ^ Smith, Patrick (21 August 2010). "Vexed, BBC Two, review". London: Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 23 August 2010. 
  10. ^ Connolly, Paul (20 August 2010). "Look out! Cowell's got competition". London: Daily Mail. Retrieved 23 August 2010. 
  11. ^ Cooke, Rachel (19 August 2010). "New Statesman - Vexed". New Statesman. Retrieved 12 August 2012. 
  12. ^ Myers, Kevin (18 August 2010). "Kevin Myers: Yes, we're in trouble, but not when compared to that gibbering loon lying across the water". Irish Independent. 
  13. ^ Myers, Sean (13 August 2010). "Vexed Review: Worrying…". channelhopping.onthebox.com. Retrieved 12 August 2012. 
  14. ^ Love, Damien (16 August 2010). "Vexed, BBC One, Sundays". Herald Scotland. Retrieved 12 August 2012. 
  15. ^ a b http://www.barb.co.uk/viewing/weekly-top-30
  16. ^ [1] Digital Spy - TV Viewing Wednesday 15 August 2012
  17. ^ [2] Digital Spy - TV Viewing Wednesday 22 August 2012
  18. ^ Digitalspy
  19. ^ Opening ceremony peaks with 11.2 million

External links[edit]