Friday, 31 August 2007

Proof instalment two takes us up to the point where the evidence needed to crucify the politician (Social Democrat) who's just won a landslide victory in the polls, is about to enter the public sphere.

It opens with Nina (Sidse Babett Knudsen) asleep at Terry Corcoran's flat. A soothing picture to start off a piece of TV drama that intends to give us a jolt.

She's not just asleep, but she's asleep alone. So: no monkey business. Next, however, we get Terry, in his shorts, reaching for an empty bottle, the contents of which were, presumably, consumed the previous evening. This establishes his cred as a 'sensitive' man (despite being in the pay of a sleazy local rag) and a man of principle.

But he's still ugly. That bald pate! Those pinched features! How could a woman who loves romance get involved with such a monster! Meanwhile, Nina sleeps, unaware that Terry is about to go into the kitchen to make a phone call!

Not just any phone call, but a call on his mobile! Doesn't he have a landline? Doesn't he know it's cheaper than a cell? And who does he call? I forget, but it's not really important. The main point is that while Terry is 'engaged' in the pursuit of whoever killed Nina's sister, Nina herself is asleep (having drunk some red wine the night before -- how 'engaged' is she?)

At this point, Nina awakes, refreshed by her senseless slumbering amid the ruins of the previous evening's mild debauch.

Incredibly, Terry somehow senses that she's now awake and reenters the living room, where the couch she slept on is situated. And he brings a morning donation to the god of wine: a glass of water!

The effect of this little refreshment is unexpected, I'm sure, to well-meaning Terry. That expression! It is a great deal more full of affect, however, than others we'll see from Nina, who is not exactly the victim but, rather, the big sister of the victim.

If we cut to Maureen, campaign secretary to the politician and ex-wife of ugly Terry, we see that it IS possible for a woman in a British TV drama to contain in her face more expression than a dead crow. Maureen, messianic, confronts sceptical journalists (see next pic -- it's fab).

She's trying to convince the hacks that her boss, the Social Democrat politician (whose victory parade will complete this week's episode), is not like other pollies but, she insists (against the incredulous hilarity of the hack), is a new type of man (for a new era?????)

She's feisty, all right, ready for anything because she knows the ropes. Who better to confront such an enemy than the ex-wife of the ur-sceptic himself: Terry Corcoran.

Next we see him with Nina, in a hallway this time: a narrow space just wide enough for two people to face each other, but forcing them to step aside in order to pass to another space. A room, for example. Or a shipping container.

As for Nina, she's blank-faced as she listens to Terry decry injustice. It was her sister who was killed and we see Terry making all the noise. Nina is a good girl: quiet (but determined), considerate (but not forgetting past wounds).

Here is a great shot, much of which is in slow-motion. Terry enters the newspaper's offices looking for vengeance, brushing determinedly past the milling hacks, ready to pour scorn on the cowardly editor who awaits in the office at the end of the news room.

Unlike Nina, the editor has the gumption to face up to Terry and even answer back. Nina, Albanian, her sister employed as a prostitute, is needy. The editor has his domain, is in control of resources, can act independently. We hear his voice and it is the voice of authority. But on whose side? Terry's? Nina's?

But is Terry's crusade all for nought? After all, the campaign manager does get the disk (not able to be copied, for some technical reason never explained). And what does he do with the evidence that will link the campaign funds to illegal sex slavery?

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