The new pre-apocalyptic drama, HARD SUN from the creator of Luther delivers on violence and unexpected twists.
Before any dialogue a woman is brutally attacked in her London home but don’t be alarmed this is how one of the main protagonists DI Renko (Agyness Deyn) is introduced to the audience.
The first episode sets out some themes we are going to expect from the series: violence, deceit and survival. If this hasn’t made you queasy then you might enjoy Hard Sun.
When Renko returns to the scene 8 months after her brutal attack, she is paired with DCI Hicks (Jim Sturgess). The lack of trust between these two is clear and Hick’s reservation proves justified when it appears that Renko is investigating him for murder. Hicks is shown to be less than morally upright.
Their complicated partnership is soon put to the test when upon investigating a potential murder case they stumble across evidence - that the world and all its inhabitants face absolute annihilation in five years. The unlikely duo are left fighting about how to protect themselves and their family from the MI5. The organisation is willing to kill to keep this mysterious end of the world a secret from the masses.
The action is at times fanciful and exaggerated, but given that the premise of the drama is human extinction in five years - a few unrealistic scenes practically goes without saying. The first segment of this six part series focuses on the two protagonists, Hicks and Renko. There is a lot more to learn about these two characters especially given hints of a turbulent past for Renko.
Reactions to Hard Sun have predictably focused on the violence and questioned whether it was too brutal. I have a feeling that the show is going to be getting a lot more violent considering that it is a pre-apocalyptic drama, especially when the secret of the Hard Sun becomes public. How would human beings behave, if we only had five years to live?
The show has that depressive grey hue similar to Luther. It was bearable, even enjoyable on the first of the six episodes as you try to figure out what is happening. The unexpected twists will keep you engaged and curious - but for how long? We’ll have to wait and see.
Should you watch this show? If the question of human nature and how we behave in impossible situations interests you, if you don’t mind the portrayal of brutal violence and if you can find a bit of joy in exaggerated scenes then absolutely.
- Aired on BBC1, January 6 2017 at 21:35.