Tag Archives: Undeniable

M.J. Arlidge on Six Degrees Of Assassination

So we’ve talked about books, we’ve talked about a fair few of them. And we’ve talked about a bit of telly. And movies, we like our crime thriller movies, and radio. So let’s move on and talk about this here audio drama. An audio drama is, like, radio without the shipping forecast, right? You can listen to it anywhere — in the car, while you go for a run, while you’re on a stakeout.

Six Degrees Of AssassinationSix Degrees Of Assassination is a gripping thriller about the murder of the British Prime Minister which is available to download from Audible.co.uk to a host of devices. The action follows an MI5 investigation into the assassination of the British Prime Minister. Six people, from assassin to mastermind, are unravelled from a web-like, complex chain of command — each of them a vital step towards uncovering the truth. It’s action-packed and, because it’s pumped right into your lug holes, unbearably tense.

Six Degrees stars Andrew Scott, him from Sherlock, and Freema Agyeman, her from Doctor Who, and Hermione Norris, her from all sorts.

And the writer M.J. Arlidge is quite the person at the moment. A television scriptwriter — Silent Witness, Torn, The Little House and Undeniable are among his credits — Arlidge became this year one of the biggest novelists in the business with his procedural Eeny Meeny.

Arlidge took time out from his packed writing schedule to give us the lowdown on Six Degrees…

Tell us about Six Degrees of Assassination…

Six Degrees is a ‘What If’ thriller about the assassination of the British Prime Minister. It introduces a new MI5 hero – Alex Cartwright – and is a cross between 24 and Homeland.

Someone once famously said the pictures on radio were better – are you able to let your imagination off the leash doing an audio drama?

Absolutely!!! I work in TV for my day job, but could only dream of doing what we do in Six Degrees. Explosions, car chases, assassinations, helicopters – it’s got the lot.

What’s that feeling like when you hear actors bring your words alive?

Amazing. We were so lucky to have such a stellar cast – Andrew Scott, Freema Agyeman, Hermione Norris — and they were uniformly brilliant. Andrew and Freeman make such a thrilling but charming pair and Hermione is so intelligent and sophisticated. I couldn’t have asked for more.

Why do we love conspiracy thrillers so much, do you think?

Because they produce a pleasurable paranoia! We love Russian Doll thrillers in which you are never sure who to trust or which agenda to believe. They are a great ride and always keep you guessing to the end. What’s not to love?

You’re both a scriptwriter and novelist, these days – how do you fit it all into your writing schedule?

It’s a juggling act, but it’s very refreshing — and challenging — to go from one medium to the other. It keeps you fresh and each informs the other. You never stop learning!

TV Crime Log: Undeniable, Thrones

Those two-part Monday night dramas that ITV churn out are a guilty pleasure of mine.

They usually involve nice middle-class ladies discovering that their sons/husbands/aunts/man she met on the internet are murderers or implicated in some kind of terrible crime. Secrets are divulged, the lady discovers that her seemingly perfect family is heaving with secrets, and there is some cathartic climactic event that brings them all back together.

UNDENIABLEThe good news is that there’s another one of these two parters starting tonight. It’s called Undeniable, and it stars Her who used to be in Casualty and Harry from Spooks.

The blurb thinks it’s definitely seen you before:

As a child Jane Philips survived a savage and brutal attack by an anonymous stranger that left her mother dead. The murderer was never found.

23 years later Jane is pregnant with her second child, but she still carries the mental scars of that fateful day. Attending an antenatal clinic at the local General Hospital Jane suddenly finds herself confronted by a man she is adamant killed her mother. Andrew Rawlins is in fact an eminent consultant oncologist employed by the Health Trust.

And yet Andrew is suspended and as enquiries proceed certain inconsistencies in both Andrew and Jane’s testimonies cast doubt on the innocence and integrity of each of them.

The strain tests their respective familial relationships to breaking. Yielding under great pressure, Andrew reluctantly submits to a blood test which DCI Ali Hall, the original investigating officer believes will prove Andrew’s guilt conclusively. However, despite the rising anticipation, Andrew’s blood DNA doesn’t match the DNA traces newly recovered from the evidence. Jane is certain of Andrew’s guilt and won’t accept this conclusion, much to the distress of her family.

Undeniable is on tonight at 9pm, on ITV. Excellent. *rubs hands together*

As we approach Easter, Crime Thriller Fella’s site stats have fallen lower than a rattlesnake’s phone bill. So it’s time to crack out some of the big-hitter internet search terms and hope for the best.


Game Of ThronesYes, A Game Of Thrones is back. It’s the tale of all the different persons who want to claim the kingdoms of Westeros as their own. The Starks, the Lannisters, the small chap, the lady in the blond wig with the dragons. And all the other people whose names I couldn’t possibly spell.

The series is based on George RR Martin’s A Song Of Ice And Fire novels, and season four starts tonight. It’s just been recommissioned for another two years – which raises the tantalizing prospect that the television iteration will come to a climax before the series of books that inspired it. Martin writes his big wedgy tomes slowly, and has come in for a bit of stick from his impatient hardcore fan base for not knocking them out quicker.

Anyway, as well as being a hugely satisfying drama, Game Of Thrones is these days something of a TV juggernaut. Perhaps because is full of WRIGGLY SEX, FULL-FRONTAL NUDITY AND EXTREME VIOLENCE. Did you hear that, internet? WRIGGLY SEX, FULL-FRONTAL NUDITY AND EXTREME VIOLENCE

A Game Of Thrones returns on Sky Atlantic tonight at 9pm. Excellent. *rubs knees*