Granted it was the biggest pile of codswallop i've ever watched, but I don't say that with a heavy heart. Akin to Eldorado back in the 90's, this show is so bad it's good. With heavy weights of the tv drama world, such as Hugh Bonneville and Julie Graham at the helm, you'd expect Bonekickers to be a highly polished, clever piece of work. Add to that the writing and creative team from Life on Mars and you're onto a BAFTA-worthy show. Surely?
Well, despite all of this it fails on all counts. The acting is diabolically bad, the scripting is Sunset-Beach worthy, and the locations are, at best, whimsical. The idea that a black American presidential candidate would be running around the hills off the Devon coast for his long lost ancestors bones whilst simultaneously the 'Kickers' are on the case of a group of long-dead slaves who have coincidentally been 'found' quite near to the surface of the Bristol channel, is of course utterly preposterous.And yet, it works. I absolutely loved how terrible it was. I wonder whether the writers were deliberately putting in so many cliches ("Yeah we know we're fucking good, we made Life on Mars, now try and swallow this shit").
You could see that they had attempted to use the concepts of some of those good bone-based dramas (Trevor Eve, grrr), but unfortuanately had stopped short of using them sucessfully. "My husband who died in mysterious circumstances said if anyone I trusted asked I should show them this painting" followed swiftly by "He also left me this package" and if that wasn't enough "He also told me to tell you...". The Bonekickers themselves too were busy solving the mysteries of the Bristol/Virginia slave trade in super quick time. "We won't find anything here" but wait, "What's this?" Why it's "a Virginia Creek" and "It's old. The black slaves must have brought it over from Virginia". Problem solved. Naturally.
I'll leave it to Hugh Bonneville's character to sum it up: "Anyone else got an underpants situation?"