Steeltown Murders Complete S01 720p WEBRip x265

tvseriesMay 28, 2023
The hunt to catch the killer of three young women in the Port Talbot area in 1973 and the remarkable story of how - in the first case of its kind - the mystery was solved almost 30 years later using pioneering DNA evidence. Contrasting the policing methods of the 1970s with the forensic breakthroughs of the early 2000s, the series portrays a town dealing with the repercussions of an unsolved case three decades on, and asks if justice can ever truly be found.
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The latest in a number of TV recreations of recent, infamous real-life crimes, this four-part BBC series centred on the brutal rape and murder of three 16-year-old girls in the space of a couple of months in neighbouring Neath and Port Talbot in Wales, in 1973. Despite a concerted police investigation at the time, the killer was never apprehended and the case went cold for decades. However, with the discovery and implementation of DNA profiling in police procedures, one detective from the original search, with the help of two able and willing colleagues, reopened the case in the hope of finally solving the murders and in the process obtain some degree of closure for the victims' families as well as dispersing the suspicions about other innocent men in the community at the time suspected of the crimes. The programme used parallel timelines, switching between the 1973 and early 2000's of each manhunt and in the absence of the expensive new-fangled de-ageing technology, chose to employ pairs of different actors for the main characters with a seeming resemblance, some more credible than others, to tell the tragic and horrific story through to its conclusion. Heading the cast as lead detective Paul Bethell was Philip Glenister, again stepping back in time to play a cop, only this time of course, unlike in "Life On Mars" and "Ashes To Ashes" his character wasn't fictional. He's well supported by his two dogged colleagues played by Steffan Rhodri and Gareth John Bale, as the three of them commandeer an old, dingy out-of-use police station to trawl through piles and piles of written evidence (this of course was in the days before computers and on-line record-keeping) to eventually take the case forward some 30 years after the crimes had first been committed. Once I got the hang of the unannounced and untitled time-switches, it was easy to get involved in the grim events portrayed. I liked how the director deliberately created the environs of the 70's in particular, where you could almost smell as well as feel the fug of smoke permeating the scenes. It was a nice touch to have any background pop music heard in the background performed by Welsh acts like Badfinger and The Stereophonics. The casting and ensemble acting was generally good throughout and although it wasn't a surprise to see Keith Allen as a suspect, this time at least he met a different fate to his usual. Again though, I'm pretty certain that hidden away in the legend that composite characters and fictional scenes had been created for dramatic purposes, I think I can say with certainty however that at least three of the leading characters were imagined and inserted for reasons of diversity, a practice of which I'm generally in favour, but not when treating real-life events like this, especially if in living memory. I also felt the series could have been condensed into three rather than four episodes, the final episode in particular really dragging out the sense of sympathetic guilt of subsidiary characters as well as the exhumation of the prime suspect. I have to say that this wasn't a case I remembered at all from when the original events first occurred. One can certainly be grateful for modern day devices like CC TV, DNA and mobile phone technology aiding the police in their work but what came across most here was the dogged determination of committed coppers doing their duty to the victims and their families to solve cold-cases even if sometimes the perpetrator doesn't always get their rightful comeuppance in their lifetime.

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Cast Overview
  • Steffan Rhodri
  • Philip Glenister
  • Karen Paullada
File Size
178.0 - 214.0 MB
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