Trueman and Riley
By Brian B.Thompson
Starring Robert Daws and Duncan Preston
Rated: 5 stars *****
Written by BAFTA-Winning dramatist Brian B. Thompson, who brought us Byker Grove amongst other great series and Robert Daws, who co-created this series, this is a very enjoyable series that mixes crime and humour to great effect.
I started to listen to Trueman and Riley, nearer the start of lockdown because I enjoy the the creator’s work (Brian B. Thompson and Robert Daws) and the acting skills of Robert Daws and Duncan Preston. I have, as regulars around my blog will see, been very busy with books. Today however I’ve had a bit of time to return to this wonderful BBC radio play that can now be found on Audible. I have reviewed the first 5 episodes previously and have a link here. In this latest post, I have quick reviews on episodes 6-10.
The series continues to be a wonderful mix of wit and hard-hitting subjects with a good amount of intrigue and twists. It’s a terrific series to listen to. There are 18 episodes, each self-contained, in the series. I fully intend to listen and write a review on the rest.
Here is a link to my review on the first 5 episodes Episodes 1- 5 review and below are episodes 6-10 and a bit about the main actors involved.
Anna Douglas, ages 25, a journalist for Real News.com in Story, has been discovered by Trueman and Riley and is critical after a “fall” from a considerable height from a building. Trueman and Riley have to get to the truth of whether she accidentally fell or was pushed.
Trueman and Riley trying to find their way around how to deal with the press is funny.
This may have been created a number of years ago, but it throws up very modern attitudes and how everything seems to be filmed these days, incuding, in this case, Anna Douglas in her hospital bed without knowing whether she will live or die.
Trueman and Riley are on the case to discover motive and who would want to see Anna out the way.
There’s a stolen ring worth £1000s, a James Bond convention all at the Royal Plaza Hotel in Bond. It’s all a Bond Villain theme. With quick-witted lines and Bond references aplenty, a “Who’s Who” of name-dropping, who played in Bond, this is enjoyable and great for any Bond fans. It’s all a bit of fun!
After much humour, a mysterious person shows up on CCTV, creating the intrigue…
In Speed, Riley is in a huff over his own misdemeanor over his driving habits, over which he has to attend an awareness course, much to his frustration. He manages to do some networking and use it to his advantage to gain info, amongst someone talking about being on the job of road traffic, which Riley finds anything but riveting.
There’s a company ran by Frank Butters who Riley ran into at the course, that may or may not be rather dubious, it’s up for debate between Trueman and Riley and then also investigation. There’s some hard-hitting parts within it, wrapped up in how “Dust and Polish” works.
The story unfolds well with its humour and twists and turns.
The Road to Nowhere – Riley is concerned about their careers as they find themselves at Woodhouse police station. Trueman is a bit more positive. They’re seen as “legends”, but Riley is being “eaten up” by frustration, which begins to cause tension between the two.
They are needed to look into crime amongst students at Leeds University. There’s a video-cast being done to raise awareness of crime. Items have been nicked and there’s the mystery of who is Chic-Lit 33 on E-bay.
There are some twists in this tale of crime and deception.
The Three Degrees finds Trueman and Riley still part of the Student Crime Prevention Team and an attempted drowning.
The debate between going to and not going to university between Trueman and Riley throws up some fascinating points.
Through the mist on the CCTV throws some light on the situation at the side of the canal.
Jane is a GP married to Paul, who is a lecturer in economics and Nick who is a children’s and radio writer. There’s a get together where past students stay in their old student houses and hang out around their old haunts.
There are secrets and twists being held in this particular student house from when these now past students were there during 1982/83.
About the Actors
Robert trained at RADA. He is an actor on stage, screen and radio. He is also an author.
His many television credits include: Dr Gordon Ormerod in eight series of The Royal, Sam Mountjoy in three series of John Sullivan’s Roger Roger and Tuppy Glossop in four series of Jeeves and Wooster. Also, Roger Dervish in the award- winning Outside Edge. (Nominated Best Actor-British Comedy Awards). He has also appeared in Father Brown, Death in Paradise, Midsomer Murders, New Tricks, Doc Martin, Casualty, The Bill, Lovejoy, A Bit of Fry and Laurie and many more… He has also appeared in films – An Unkind Word and Swimming With Men to name but a few…
Theatre work includes Most recently Alan Ayckboun’s Ten Times Table, Michael Frayn’s Alarms and Excursions and Sir Alan Ayckbourn’s hit comedy, How The Other Half Loves. Other plays include Sherlock Holmes, Yes Prime Minister, Diary Of A Nobody at the Theatre Royal, Blackbird for which Robert was nominated for Best Actor in the Manchester Evening News Drama Awards. He has also appeared in Summoned by Betjeman.
A regular contributor on radio as actor and broadcaster, Robert has read biographies of both P.G Wodehouse and John Betjeman for Radio 4 and co-created the long running radio series, with writer Brian B Thompson, Trueman and Riley, in which he plays D.I Trueman. He also played Prof. David Poll in the comedy series Higher by Joyce Bryant and Arthur Lowe in Roy Smiles, Dear Arthur, Love John. Also, Goodnight From Him, in which he plays Ronnnie Barker in the story of the Two Ronnies, Incredible Women by Rebecca Front and Jeremy Front and others… He has also happily recorded audios for Dr Who and Torchwood for Big Finish.
Books – His first crime novella, The Rock, was published in 2012 and made the top of the Amazon Bestseller list five times.
His second Sullivan and Broderick murder mystery, The Poisoned Rock, was published in Sept 2016. His third in the series, Killing Rock, His ghost story, Tunnel Vision – also set in Gibraltar, is Amazon No 1 bestseller.
The books are now being republished by a different publisher, which is exciting. I have also been informed by the publisher there is a new book on the way too. Please do look out for publicity on all of the books. They are great reads and I’ll also be involved in reviews for them, so please do also look out for those.
He has had many appearances in television productions written by Victoria Wood including his roles of Clifford in the soap opera parody sketches Acorn Antiques, including Acorn Antiques the musical. He also appeared as Stan in the sitcom Dinner Ladies.His other television roles include appearing in EastEnders, Coronation Street and Emmerdale. He played Jonathan Haslam in the sitcom Surgical Spirit. He has also appeared in The Royal, The New Statesman, Press Gang, Midsomer Murders, Dalziel and Pascoe, My Family and more.
In theatre, he has appeared in many Shakespearean productions, including MacBeth and has also been in other plays such as – To Kill a Mockingbird.
He was awarded an honorary Doctor of Letters degree by the University of Bradford for his contributions as an actor.