Having given up on broadcast telly a few years back, I completely missed The Ghost Squad, but thanks to the power of thee t*r*e*t, it’s fair impressed me.
It’s about a secretive anti-corruption unit within the police (based on the one which earned investigative journalists Laurie Flynn and Michael Gillard their marching orders from The Grauniad courtesy of that prissy prick Alan Rusbridger, you may recall), into which young copper Amy Harris (Elaine Cassidy) is recruited. It’s not the usual few-bad-apples hypothesis; pretty much every jack is shown as bent, just to different degrees and towards different ends. There are no happy endings. And whilst counter-intuition sometimes helps direct the viewer to whodunnit, invariably it doesn’t really matter, because the point seems to be in highlighting the dysfunction of organisations such as the police, where personal qualities and discretion rub uncomfortably with corporate goals and discipline.
In episode four, the from-the-headlines hook revolves around anti-social behaviour, sink estates and girl gangs. Peeler-haters may revel in the beating an off-duty constable takes off a posse of feral minxes, one of whom takes the time to squat over their unconscious prey in order to piss her primacy into his bloodsoaked body.
Lazy shorthand: Between The Lines meets The Cops by way of (GF Newman’s) Law And Order.