For me, CaroIine Catz saved the show.
I had labeled DCI Banks with a 4-letter word, "bore" and filed it my "needs new cast bin". Why? Although the show is very well written, settings are great, etc... Tompkinson can unwittingly convert a trip to Disneyworld into exhausting inward turmoil, replete with his omnipresent deadpan, and his 1-facial expression (misery) for all things, all the time throughout each episode. He is boring, boringly ill-suited as lead detective. Meanwhile, high spirited, strong-willed and outrageously aggressive Annie(?) Lowe is good as Cabbot. She is fun to watch and for me, represents pulsating real life in the stories. But even Lowe can't resurrect Tompkinson from the gloom of "walking dead". Tsk, tsk, tsk. Looking at the show I got exhausted, not entertained because of Tomkinson's tedious dragging of his well-fed, albatross throughout every storyline. Who wants to work with "DCI Doom & Gloom" in real life? Then, add the show's horrific murders, psycho villains, and sundry other unsettling miscreants & police problems... (gasp) So I exercised my remote control. THEN... I read somewhere that Caroline Catz... THE amazing Caroline Catz... Doc Martin's gorgeous "Louisa" was joining cast of DCI Banks. Hallelujah! She's a new and wonderful reason to resurrect DCI Banks from my "BORE bin". As usual, CC did not disappoint. Confession: Yep. I was somewhat leery of CC being acceptable & believable to me as someone other than beloved "Louisa" for Doc Martin. She literally IS Louisa Ellingham in Port Wenn, the seaside home of amazing Doc Martin. But... I love watching CC's work so much... I HAD to give it a go look at her in DCI Banks.
Hallelujah! What a brilliant change to the show. New character is a complicated woman fully imbued with depth of overall persona, quirky and complicated personality, behavior and even a surprisingly complete (and also VERY unusual) family and married life. "Strange Affair", CC's first outing on DCI Banks was, to say the least, compelling. Splendid. She literally WAS not Caroline Catz; she definitely was NOT "Louisa Ellingham" and amazingly, she was so absorbing and compelling as DCI Morton... I never had a thought of "Louisa" I was far too "sold and delivered" that I was watching DCI Morton in DCI Banks. (Yep. I am addicted to Doc Martin (Martin Clunes), especially the passionate love story between the grouchy, gruff Physician and his unusually beautiful Louisa (CC). I love everything about DM and MARTIN CLUNES... (sigh). Anyway... as I began, Caroline Catz put DCI Banks back on my viewer list for as long as she continues with the cast. I have already bought series 2 and 3 for my personal library and of course will buy other series when they're available. THANK you Peter Robinson; Left Bank Pictures; iTV and especially... THANK you, Thank YOU... Caroline Catz. I'm so pleased, delighted that iTV and Left Bank listened to viewers and put life aka Caroline Catz in the cast. She has shaken up Tompkinson just the right amount to elevate him to "human" from his past "miserable troll".