LUTHER: Sleeker, Sexier and Scarier Than Ever (2011)

For fans of LUTHER, the galvanizing British police procedural, the second season comes back strong and with a vengeance. It is a no-holds-barred intense drama with thrilling mystery and agonizing moral dilemmas. The first episode flawlessly weaves the stories of a serial killer seeking his 15-minutes of fame by staging random murders, the life of young call-girl who may or may not need saving, and a sociopath who identifies so strongly with our hero, that she will literally do anything for him — including stalking the killer he hunts.

LUTHER revitalized standardized story-telling by upping the ante in its first season; for LUTHER has never been afraid to peer into the darkness and see what peers back.

John Luther (Idris Elba) is a broken cop haunted by the sins of his past and the criminal monsters that won’t let his soul rest. Traumatized by his inner demons, Luther struggled for his sanity and his badge in the first season and with the aid of Alice Morgan (Ruth Wilson), a serial killer who took a shine to him, Luther came face to face with the man who killed his ex-wife and was forced to choose whether he lived or died. Fate, or rather the hand of Alice, made the choice for him and the after-effects of that momentous and climatic season finale left their futures undetermined.

As the second season reveals, John is back on the police force, saner than before, and Alice is confined to a secure mental facility. But appearances are deceiving. John still wrestles with his conscience and his inexplicable desire to see Alice, despite the hell she has wrought upon him. Alice, in turn, cannot resist the need to save John before he spirals out of control again. The dance between the cop and the serial killer is riveting and at times tinged with platonic eroticism.

Underlying the gritty, and at times, vicious sequences portrayed in the first returning episode is a musical score that is breath-taking. It resonates throughout your soul and emphasizes the beauty in the midst of the horror. Just as thought-provoking and searing is the precise dialogue between the characters reminding us that brilliant television lies within the words woven into the story; whether it is the serial killer reminding John, “find yourself a life worth living” as she sees just a specter of the man she knew before her, or the prostitute who reminds him, “It’s not who I am, but who they wish I was,” when he tries to save her.

While the story of a serial killer taunting the police is nothing new, the way the story plays out, it still shocks and surprises. LUTHER remains as unpredictable and delightful as always. It is at times spooky (not for the feint-of-heart) and soulful. So as the second season embarks into the unknown yet again, you are invited to join for its macrabre and masterful tales.

Don’t miss LUTHER when it returns for its second season on Wednesday, September 28th at 10:00 p.m. on BBC America. I promise, LUTHER will stop your heart and jump-start it all over again — and you’ll love every second of it!

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