Utopia, Channel 4 - TV review: Series finally picks up the pace
Ellen E Jones
Ellen is The Independent's TV critic. She writes a daily review of Last Night's TV and a weekly 'Inside TV' column for the i paper, as well as a column on general topics for the main paper most Wednesdays. Ellen is a former Hollywood correspondent and a contributing editor to Little White Lies, she's written on TV, film, lifestyle, travel and politics for publications including the Guardian, The Times, The Sunday Times, Esquire and Total Film.
Tuesday 29 July 2014
Protective visors at the ready. As the plot intensifies in the home straight of Utopia (Channel 4), so too does the garish colour scheme and the risk of blood splatter.
Fans have come to expect that any scene of a loving family enjoying domestic security will shortly be followed by a massacre of some sort. That's just the Utopia way. This episode's opening sequence, then, was a clear sign that the series was about to pick up the pace.
About time too. These last few weeks have seemed to prove that writer Dennis Kelly's decision to carry over the Janus plot from series one was a mistake. There's only so many times alliances can be betrayed and reformed before the device gets old, and there's a limit to how many blank-faced psychopaths a viewer can emotionally invest in. Luckily, both of Carver's children have begun to seek out more meaningful ways of relating to their fellow human beings.
Jessica was pursuing a romantic relationship with Ian (much to his bewilderment) and her hitman brother's renewed sense of purpose handily pointed us towards the series' own thematic end-goal. "I didn't see you as a family man," ventured Donaldson conversationally. "This is all about family," was Arby/Piotr's solemn reply.
Filming to begin on two new series due to be aired on Dave from next year
TVBBC hopes latest Danish import will spell success
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Which country would be hardest to invade?
- 2 Indonesia executions: Death row British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford will refuse to wear a blindfold when she faces firing squad
- 3 The man who filmed the Freddie Gray video has been arrested at gunpoint
- 4 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
- 5 Uploading pictures to find out how old you are gives Microsoft the right to post them wherever they want
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Avengers: Age of Ultron set to make box office history with $84.5m US opening
London Marathon: Best running songs from Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar to 'Uptown Funk'
The highly NSFW poster for Gaspar Noé's Love makes Nymphomaniac look like 50 Shades
New on Netflix UK May 2015: From Fast & Furious 6 to World War Z and Grace and Frankie
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
Indonesia executions live: 'Hysterical' families heard prisoners being shot dead by firing squad
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: SNP and its activists 'openly racist' towards the English, Farage says
EU exit would hit UK economy much harder than neighbouring countries, study finds