Halifax FP

Season 3 Episode 3

Afraid of the Dark

0
Aired Unknown Sep 06, 1998 on The Nine Network
9.4
out of 10
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10 votes
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Afraid of the Dark
AIRED:
Told in retrospect, Jane is receiving councilling from her analyst after having killed someone.
It is Christmas, Jane is alone, feeling vulnerable, stressed, suffering from panic attacks and drinking a little too much. She is called in to help investigate the case of a mass murderer who has shot the customers in a country diner. There are few survivors who provide little in the way of clues. One man, Ray Harvey, is their best hope but he is a reformed alcoholic who has fallen off the wagon as a result of the shooting. Detective Eric Ringer works with Jane and falls for her. On New Year's Eve, Eric arrives at Jane's apartment, finding her somewhat under the influence of drink. They end up in bed. Afterwards, Jane is at her lowest ebb. She takes Eric's gun and puts it in her mouth - echoing her father's suicide. Shaking her out of her depression is a call from Ray asking for her assistance. Rushing to help him, Jane and Ray find themselves back at the diner, face to face with the killer.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • When several people are shot to death at an isolated service station/cafe, the police believe one of the dead was the gunman who then committed suicide but soon, they must rethink their theory and hunt the real killer.moreless

    10
    This episode begins with Jane (Rebecca Gibney) in the present having sessions with a therapist because, in the past, she had to kill someone in order to save other lives and she is clearly struggling with this reality.



    Flashing back to the past again, it's the festive season and Jane is going through a tough time. Typically, she isn't involved in a steady relationship and is a little too reliant on alcohol to help relieve her melancholy. She is pulled out of her reverie when a mass shooting takes place at an out-of-the-way cafe and service station, where it appears a young man has shot several staff and customers before turning the gun on himself. Detectives Eric Ringer (Hugh Jackman) and his superior, Detective Helen de Castro (Susan Lyons) are the lead investigators and, at first, it seems cut and dried until investigations prove that the young man thought to be the killer was, in fact, trying to save the other victims and died as a result of his bravery, which means that the man they are looking for is still out there.



    Ray Harvey (Shane Feeney-Connor) was in the lavatory nearby listening to the cricket on the radio at the time of the shooting. Ray works as a mechanic at the service station adjoining the cafe and is devastated by the deaths of not only so many of his friends and co-workers, but also the innocent customers. A former alcholic, the horror of what he discovered when he left the lavatory has him once again drinking heavily and totally unable to cope with the magnitude of what has taken place.



    Neither Jane nor the police can come up with any motive for the appallling crime and, having made one mistake as to whom they believed was responsible, the police are treading much more warily as they look for answers.



    Meanwhile, the shooting continues to remind Jane of the sudden and unexplained suicide of her father, a leading Queen's Counsel, who shot himself when she was young for no apparent reason. By New Year's Eve, Jane is more melancholy than ever and an unexpected visit from Eric Ringer ends up with the two of them in bed together and Jane feeling even worse about herself, her father's death and everything else that has been happening in her life.



    When Ray Harvey, a mad car enthusiast, remembers some significant details about the vehicle he heard leaving the scene of the crime, the police feel they are close to catching the man responsible for the carnage. A telephone call from Ray, who is clearly suffering and in need of assistance sees Jane going back again to the crime scene to offer her help, but instead of just assisting Ray, the two of them find themselves trapped by the killer who has come back again and who justifies his actions by saying the waitress short-changed him by 20 dollars on his bill.



    For Ray and for Jane, there is only one way out, but can they do it?



    This is by far one of the best of all the 'Halifax fp' episodes. Superbly acted, written and directed, and with a stellar cast, it a Australian drama at its very best. One of the reasons for the writing of the episode was to, in a small way, commemorate the shocking mass shootings at Port Arthur in Tasmania in April, 1996. The episode is one not to be missed.moreless
Hugh Jackman

Hugh Jackman

Detective Eric Ringer

Guest Star

Shane Connor

Shane Connor

Ray Harvey

Guest Star

Bryan Marshall

Bryan Marshall

John Halifax

Guest Star

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