"A police presence is non-negotiable"
Paul Abbott's No Offence returns for a most welcome second season after a quality Series 1 in mid-2015 added to the purple patch for police procedurals that we seem to be in. Abbott's spin places us with the Manchester Metropolitan Police and in a world that is equally darkly comic and dramatic as the squad deal with the ramifications of the climax of that first series, as well as keeping an eye on the combustible gangland situation that looks set to involve our guys here.
And what guys - Joanna Scanlan's almost impossibly charismatic DI Viv Deering as comically sharp as she is whip-smart, Elaine Cassidy's pragmatic DC Dinah Kowalska and Alexandra Roach's serious-minded DS Joy Freer underneath her, with Sarah Solemani's ice-cold DCI Christine Lickberg joining them, providing scarcely wanted oversight and some juicy looking tension. The casual female focus (of the series at large) and refreshing body positivity (of this episode in particular) are just marvellous to behold.
But they're only part of what makes No Offence so damn good, Abbott's dialogue is a thing of wonder whether for leads or cameos, especially when coming out of the mouths of such accomplished actors as Paul Ritter's crackpot forensics guy (the Hieronymus botch job gag was worth the price of admission alone). And Rakie Ayola's gangland matriarch looks set to be a frankly amazing frenemy-like adversary, I hope we get to see a lot more of her in the weeks to come.