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Protests, politics, and murders are the stuff of newspaper headlines when the second series of Scottish crime drama, The Field of Blood, debuts in the US on Acorn TV.

The Field of Blood Series 2
The Field of Blood: Jayd Johnson, David Morrissey, Katherine Kelly – © Slate Films, courtesy of Acorn TV

“Imagine my dismay: it was better than the book.”[1]

So said author Denise Mina about the second series of The Field of Blood, which was adapted from her Edgar-nominated novel, The Dead Hour.

It’s 1984, and members of the National Union of Mineworkers are on strike across the UK to protest the National Coal Board’s closure of pits. For newspapers, the strike is front page fodder. For Patricia “Paddy” Meehan, now a full-fledged journalist at the Glasgow Daily News, it is also something else.

On another freezing cold night in the call car, Paddy and fellow journalist George McVie head to a domestic disturbance reported in the posh Bearsden section of Glasgow. The woman in the window is bloodied, but the man at the door explains it away as the result of drink. So why did he give hush money to the two journos then? And why had Glasgow CID (Criminal Investigation Department) been called to a domestic?

The woman, Vhari Burnett, is found murdered the next morning, and Paddy is gobsmacked by the news. But there is more pressing news to take in: the paper has been sold and there is a new editor-in-chief. Enter Maloney, who surprises editor Devlin and the newsroom staff by being a woman. Her mission to increase readership and profits by making the paper “leaner, meaner, and keener” leaves Devlin in a struggle to tell the news as he sees fit and protect everyone’s jobs while under threat of dismissal if he and they don’t toe the management line.

Then a man’s body is found floating near the Clyde Bridge. It looks to be a suicide. Paddy learns that he, an attorney, had known Vhari, also a lawyer. Was his death really a suicide or was it murder? Were the two deaths connected, and if so, how? And why haven’t the police pursued other lines of inquiry after releasing the prime suspect?

Further digging by Paddy and McVie reveals that Vhari had been involved in something with the miners, and that Vhari’s sister, Karen, hasn’t been home or shown up for work at GCHQ (Government Communications). Things really get heated when the call car is firebombed… with McVie in it.

The real-life miners’ strikes that occurred during the Thatcher era serve as the backdrop for The Field of Blood: Series 2, a taut tale of corruption, collusion and suppression from the highest levels down. The two-part crime drama stars Jayd Johnson (River City) as Paddy, David Morrissey (The Walking Dead) as Devlin, Katherine Kelly (Mr. Selfridge) as Maloney, and Ford Kiernan (George Gently) as McVie.

Costars include Stuart Martin (Hebburn) as DC Burns, Michael Nardone (Line of Duty) as DI Gallagher, Ron Donachie (Blandings) as DCI Sullivan, Amy Manson (Outcasts) as Karen Burnett, David Hayman (Trial & Retribution) as Red Willie McDade, and Matt Costello (Rab C. Nesbitt) and Bronagh Gallagher (Pramface) as Con and Trisha Meehan.

The second series of The Field of Blood makes its US debut on Monday, 7 July 2014, at Acorn TV , where the first series is currently available for streaming.

[1] Source: BBC



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