Episode Reviews (2)
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Season premiere shows a big improvement over Season 1
When I first watched the first season of Luther, I found myself simultaneously disappointed and pleased. I was disappointed by how Neil Cross and the rest of the crew decided to put Luther and Alice Morgan's relationship on the back-burner for most of the season while focusing on random (albeit interesting and dark) cases-of-the-week that were exciting but ultimately pointless. As the season drew to an end, the show showed some signs of life with the death of Luther's wife and Luther's attempt to escape the blame. The final two episodes of the season were great in the sense that it was exciting, but a bit lackluster in the sense that it came out of nowhere. Luther's friend Ian Reed was responsible for Zoe's death, but we didn't know anything about Reed, which meant when he was revealed to be the bad guy, I found myself caring very little.
However, whatever Season 1 was missing in momentum seems to be in Season 2 (at least so far). With a shortened episode load and a better understanding of who some of these characters are, Season 2 gets off to a fast start, throwing us into the middle of another murder, this one apparently lasting for the whole four episode of the season. Whereas Season 1 was scatter-shot in it's attempt to create a story arc, Season 2 seems to have it down-pat right now.
For one, we have a killer who is truly terrifying. Cameron Pell, a failed artist who murders people at historical monuments in London as an attempt to scare people the way Jack the Ripper did hundreds of years before, is an odd man, somebody who will likely be fleshed out a bit as the season continues but remains a few steps ahead of Luther and the rest of the detectives.
Secondly, the show remains as exciting as before. Season 1 had plenty of tense scenes, and Season 2 seems to be attempting to one-up it. The scene where Cameron live-streams his kill while Luther is forced to watch was great, as was the scene where Luther and Cameron run into each other in the alleyway, and Luther, despite being tased and Maced, continues to fight back. They're both great sequences that prove Neil Cross can write scenes that leave the audience on the end of their seats.
As of right now, I don't have many problems with the season opener. I suppose the plot with Jenny Jones, the teenage prostitute, seems a bit odd right now and a little too Taxi Driver-esque for my liking, but I did like the scene between Mark North and Jenny after Luther drops her off (speaking of Mark North, I didn't think I'd be glad to see him again, but the way that him and Luther are "mates," more or less, makes for an interesting concept. Also, I wasn't expecting to see Alice Morgan this season, but it appears that her and Luther's friendship is just as strong as it was before, and seeing that Luther left her a key-card to escape seems like an interesting development.
Right now, Season 2 of Luther is starting off on the right foot. It's taking everything I liked about Season 1, weeded out some of the issues and continued to give Idris Elba a compelling character to play.lmoreless
Punch Mask Love
Luther returns after the stunning ending last series when the trigger was pulled by Alice Morgan on Ian Reed and the police stormed in on them. Now Alice has taken the fall and Luther is returning to police work under the new Serious and Serial Unit run by Martin Schenk. He recruits Justin Ripley into the unit after he has been demoted to uniform and processing. A new serial killer is on the loose who wears a punch mask and he brutalizes women on camera and models himself after Spring Heeled Jack (an urban figure from Victorian times). Luther quickly discovers the identity of the killer as a failed artist named Cameron and he quickly begins playing games with Luther and the unit. Luther also talks to Alice Morgan in her psychiatric care now and continues to explore that dynamic now that she's behind bars, sort of, for murder. Luther is disheartened when he must help the daughter of a man he put away when her mother shows up and begs him to plead with her to get out of her line of business which is rapist porn where she is to be unconscious so Luther must stow her away at Mark's house while he tracks down the killer. It's good to have Luther back, with this supposed to be two two hour longs episodes in broadcast and then changed to four I believe it works better this way what with the cliffhanger ending and all. But Luther is indeed back and better than ever, and since Luther now has nothing truly left to left with Zoe dead, we're about to bear witness to a whole new side of DCI John Luther.moreless