Interview with BLOOD writer SOPHIE PETZAL. She talks Catherine Mackin, Jonathan Fisher and TV Drams.
The series follows Cat Hogan (played by Carolina Main) who is isolated and on the run from her previous life. She is forced to go back home after the accidental death of her Mother, quickly suspecting the death had foul play involved.
Blood recently aired on Channel 5 and Petzal says family was the major theme. “I was always fascinated at how adult children, who spent their formative years together beneath one roof, can have such fundamentally different views on their parents and childhoods.”
“Family and family memory is a theme that has peppered my work for some time. When I had the idea with Jonathan Fisher (Producer) to write a contained, claustrophobic domestic thriller about a daughter who believes her father may have murdered her mother, I had the perfect opportunity to tie the two threads together.”
It’s now out on DVD (from Acorn Media), but why should you watch it above another dark drama? “The joy of this idea was how our characters could be trapped in the banalities of real life, all the while dealing with the extraordinary – suspecting a family member of murder.”
“There felt something unique about that approach and it was a perfect opportunity in this blend of crime and family drama. It’s unique because of the show’s tone, humour, surprises and the fact it’s a crime show that isn’t lead by a police investigation!!
So who is Cat? “She is a fiercely bright but damaged young woman. She has remained close to her ailing mother Mary, but her dislike of her father has kept her from returning to the family home. That is until her mother seemingly (suspiciously in Cat’s eyes) – succumbs to illness.”
“Cat has a memory of her father (Jim, played by Adrian Dunbar), to which she was the only witness. This means she sees him in a fundamentally different light to her siblings (Michael and Fiona). Cat has spent her life being told this memory is inaccurate of even fake. If true, then Jim is a genuinely dangerous man.”
In a recent interview, Catherine Mackin described the show as having a stellar line-up. Sophie agrees, “I enjoyed working with everyone of our talented cast and I worked closely with them.”
“It’s of course an incredible pleasure to work with an actor as prolific and extraordinary as Adrian Dunbar. He is tremendous fun, an incredible performer and has been such a champion of the show. We owe him a great deal.”
“It was also exciting working with newer actors for whom Blood was their first job, or a much bigger job than they’ve had before. It is so exciting to find such brilliant talents to work on our show. We had a very happy and special set.”
We then asked Petzal what other similar series she could recommend. “Line Of Duty, for shock twists, turns and my favourite long interrogation scenes! Jed Mercurio is the master of these kind of scenes.”
“Secondly, I’d say Happy Valley – it is the perfect example of a cop show. It has engaging, human and witty characters who I’d care about irrespective of their compelling lives as police offices. No one writes comedy into their bleak drama like Sally Wainwright. She’s a huge inspiration to me.”
Telly Bine spoke to Sophie Petzal in December 2018. Visit her Twitter feed for updates.