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Tuesday, August 18, 2009


(Pic: Dennis Waterman, Alun Armstrong, Amanda Redman and James Bolam star in “New Tricks”)

Highly entertaining programme featuring three inimitable retired detectives.

If you missed New Tricks on its current showing on BBC Entertainment (channel 120 on DStv), then keep an eye open for a return season in the future. One of the most entertaining programmes coming from the UK, New Tricks - as in “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks” – features three retired detectives who have been brought back to work to tackle unsolved crimes.

Back on the case again, Brian Lane (Alun Armstrong), Gerry Standing (Dennis Waterman) and Jack Halford (James Bolam) return to put their collective experience to more good use. They may have handed in their badges and collected their pensions years ago but they are still working at the London Metropolitan Police as civilians investigating unsolved crimes as part of Sandra Pullman’s Unsolved Crime and Open Case Squad. Led by Pullman (Amanda Redman), who spends half her time trying to rein them in, the three men investigate an array of challenging and disturbing crimes.

You’d have to be very brave to tell this motley crew they are too old to chase criminals – whatever they lack in agility, they more than make up for in years of experience. Out of touch with modern policing, they thrive on bending and even breaking the rules to get a result – something which consistently annoys Pullman. The question is, will she stop them, or join them in doing just about anything to get to the truth?

In the third series, the team investigates the chilling death of a member of a witches’ coven. Did black magic play a part in the murder? There’s also a chill in the air as two families are busy reigniting a feud which may threaten their livelihoods as ice-cream vendors. Both families are convinced of the other’s guilt over a shooting in the past at the hands of the ‘ice-cream bandit’.

New Tricks runs for eight episodes from August 4 at 13h10 and 22h30 on BBC Entertainment (channel 120 on DStv)