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The Bletchley Circle

A code well worth cracking.

Rod Lott May 15th, 2013

Nearly a decade after World War II ends, four British women who performed a valuable (albeit hush-hush) service breaking codes for their country find themselves restless and feeling useless in the era’s expected roles of barefoot-and-pregnant subservience.

When the meekest of them (Anna Maxwell Martin) notices a pattern in a string of Jack the Ripper-esque slayings plaguing back together, so to speak.

London, she gets the band back together, so to speak. If they couldn’t tell anyone about their wartime efforts, they certainly can’t tell anyone now; after all, what could housewives possibly do that the police couldn’t?

Plenty, of course, which adds another layer of compelling complexity atop the one of serial-killer suspense The Bletchley Circle already boasts. As one character says, “There’s a ton of bumf in there.”

Across the ITV-to-PBS series’ mere three episodes, each of the ladies (Episodes' Sophie Rundle, Rachael Stirling and Bonekickers' Julie Graham being the others) plays her part with a distinct personality, contributing to the group a strong dynamic it otherwise would lack. While girl power is an intentional theme, director Andy De Emmony never forgets the show is a mystery-thriller, and a bloody terrific one at that. —Rod Lott

Hey! Read This:
Bonekickers DVD review     
Episodes: The Complete First & Second Seasons DVD review    
Whitechapel: The Ripper Returns DVD review    

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