The non-appearance of this celebrated series (which came a cropper in the hysteria following the Hungerford killings) has been something a celebrated case – and it’s to Network’s credit that they have finally released the stylish crime series with a charismatic, pre-Hollywood Clive Owen as the eponymous detective created by ace crime writer Mark Timlin. This welcome issue contains the complete series, originally aired in 1996, along with the pilot episode – The Turnaround – from 1995 (the latter has a striking and nuanced performance by Bill Patterson in an ambiguous role). The series showcased screenplay storylines from, among others, Tony Hoare of The Sweeney and the now-famous Paul Abbott. And with such actors as Ray Winstone and Keith Allen among the casts, one can forgive the few blemishes (some uncertain pacing, and nondescript music and title sequence – the show called out for a striking and kinetic credit sequence to match Mark Timlin’s edgy character. And why weren’t more of Timlin’s original novels used as source material?). But forget the quibbles – the set deserves a cordial welcome. Oh, and Mark Timlin’s Sharman books should perhaps be read as a prelude to watching the series…

SHARMAN – THE COMPLETE SERIES

Various directors/Network

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