In The City — 30 November 2013
What to watch when you  think there’s nothing on

As you await the next Homeland, or lament the end of Breaking Bad, we’ve got a streaming bet for you straight outta Ireland. Try to imagine a younger Clint Eastwood as a disgraced cop in the stunning coastal town of Galway. Add some rougher edges, and a deep resonant voice perfect for Philip Marlowe-style voiceovers, and you’re getting close to Jack Taylor, hero of the series of the same name.

Starring Iain Glen (Game of Thrones, Resident Evil) the Irish TV movies bring crime drama to, if not a whole new level, at least much better accents. Jack may have problems with drink, and may get distracted by women, but he sure seems to know a lot more about solving crime than the police (The Guard) who booted him out. In Galway, when someone turns up missing, or worse, people seem to find Jack.

The gulls, the seaside, the quaint provincial streets – and the enigmatic characters who inhabit them – give the films immense charm. Jack also has to work through some family issues; his “mum” and he are estranged. When he ends up in her place after a particularly bad beating by thugs (guns are few and far between in Galway, a kind of charm, too), things don’t improve. When he leaves, he muses to himself in that wonderful brogue about “why parents always seem able to push your buttons.” His answer: “They put them there in the first place.”

John Dolen


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