” Line of Duty” is the high acclaimed British drama series that was originally broadcast on BBC Two and which premiered on 26 June 2012. Created by Jed Mercurio, the drama follows the investigations of AC-12, one of the most controversial police anti corruption units and their fight for justice and equality.
Set in a world where the corruption and the evil are everywhere, ”Line of Duty” is a drama based on fiction but which is able to integrate realist elements within it because it brings to the surface the issues that the actual society is currently facing with. “Line of Duty is a social realist drama so it’s set in a world that has the recognisable features of the authentic world we see around us. Within that world there is historic child sex abuse that has been perpetrated by certain public figures. I didn’t invent that.” (The Telegraph,2018) This proves that a lot of research and fact has been put into making this drama in order to create content that it is believable and which can be understood by the wide audience.
Apart from the huge amount of research that goes into it, what makes this drama worth watching is the tension and mystery that each episode brings based on the secrets and plot twists that were never revealed or even hinted to the large public. ”Part of Line of Duty’s nerve-shredding tension comes because at a time when television is blighted by plot details leaking online, the BBC Two show has proved particularly good at keeping its secrets. ” (The Telegraph,2016) How can this be possible? According to the creator, Jed Mercurio, it ”is simple to lie”. (The Telegraph,2016) This approach encourages the audience to keep watching and in terms of the content, it adds a layer of suspense to the whole drama that has the outcome desired by the creator and the producers, namely for the audience to believe what it is shown and to immerse themselves into the storyline.
In terms of the audience, ” BBC Two’s remit is to be a mixed-genre channel appealing to a broad adult audience with programmes of depth and substance.” ( BBC Trust, 2016) The drama has currently finished its fourth season, but due to its popularity and the passion of both the creator and the fans, it has been renewed by BBC for another two seasons. ”The broadcaster’s decision to do another two series comes shortly after Mercurio said it would be “nice to know” it’s not the end before he starts penning the fifth instalment.” ( The List,2017) Furthermore, the season four’ finale has managed to score the highest viewing figures in the drama’s history. ” The BBC police drama’s sixth and final instalment on Sunday night was viewed by 7.5 million people, according to overnight ratings, nearly a million more than the penultimate episode the previous week – at 6.6 million.The number, the highest overnight figure in the show’s history, is expected to grow after viewers watching on catchup are taken into account next week.” (The Guardian,2017)
- Wilson, B. (2018). Jed Mercurio: Lies have been the making of Line of Duty. [online] The Telegraph. Available at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/tv/2016/04/27/jed-mercurio-line-of-duty-interview/ [Accessed 25 Feb. 2018].
- Bbc.co.uk. (2018). BBC – BBC Two – BBC Trust. [online] Available at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbctrust/our_work/services/television/service_licences/bbc_two.html [Accessed 25 Feb. 2018].
- The List. (2018). Line of Duty gets another 2 series. [online] Available at: https://www.list.co.uk/article/93692-line-of-duty-gets-another-2-series/ [Accessed 25 Feb. 2018].
- the Guardian. (2018). Line of Duty season four finale cops 7.5 million viewers. [online] Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2017/may/01/line-of-duty-season-four-finale-7-point-5-million-viewers-bbc2 [Accessed 25 Feb. 2018].