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Review of the second series of Vicky McClure's intense bomb disposal drama, Trigger Point.
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Review of the second series of Vicky McClure’s intense bomb disposal drama, Trigger Point.


The initial installment of Trigger Point didn’t just stretch belief, it completely demolished it, which is fitting for a show that can be summed up as “big explosion occurs”. It was frustrating, mostly illogical, and made Line of Duty seem like a masterpiece. However, despite all this, every time I saw explosives expert Lana Washington (portrayed by Vicky McClure) disobeying orders and putting herself in danger to disarm an IED, only to miraculously survive because someone else took the hit, I found myself holding my breath and unable to look away.

Despite experiencing significant destruction in the first season and dealing with the aftermath of her traumatic experiences, Lana has returned to her job. She spent six months in Estonia training Ukrainian professionals on bomb defusal. Her hairstyle has also changed slightly, with her topknot now an inch lower and possibly becoming a ponytail in the future. Not only is Lana back at work, but she is also giving a formal speech about the complex duties of an explosives officer, or “expo,” and disregarding orders. Just as she mentions the importance of being vigilant, a nearby power station explodes, which can be seen from the conference hall. What are the chances?

Trigger Point has intensified significantly compared to its previous season, indicating a “go hard or go home” mentality. This may be attributed to Lana’s encounter with bad luck in the past. Even on her first day back at work, she is already inspecting the area with caution, using a large tool similar to a dentist’s mirror. No one is safe as even distant relatives and strangers have caused trouble for her in the past.

This is so spectacularly unsubtle that it is almost admirable. At the power station, there are two extra bombs on the gate, so nobody can get inside to douse the main fire that has been set by some sort of insider who has also disabled the alarm. (The fire service decides simply to cut a hole in the wire fence a little distance away, which suggests that the criminal mastermind planning this season’s main arc has not quite thought things through.) Each bomb is attached to a massive yellow Danger of Death sign. Really makes you think.

Will Lana use her calm and collected demeanor to disarm the bombs, as one would expect from someone who trains Ukrainian soldiers and gives speeches about it? However, it is not a surprise that things do not go as planned. Despite people shouting at her to stay away from the faulty equipment (which seems to be a recurring issue on this show), Lana refuses to listen because she is a renegade who does not follow rules. These traits are likely essential for someone who regularly deals with unpredictable, stressful, and dangerous situations.

The issue with Trigger Point is that it relies on Lana’s skill as a TV show host to keep viewers entertained. In another scene, she must use quick thinking to prevent a disaster, but at the same time, she must also be somewhat ineffective so viewers are kept on the edge of their seats. This balance is necessary because watching a competent woman doing her job does not create enough tension or drama. This is why popular TV detectives are often portrayed as “troubled” individuals who engage in affairs, heavy drinking, and neglect their families.

Trigger Point is nonsensical, but still captivating even though everyone speaks in a formal manner. The new boss suggests consulting with security services for assistance. While this may be typical for big bosses, it begs the question if a more comprehensive plan would be beneficial. Similar to the first season, the mastermind behind the attacks remains unknown, but the involvement of drones does not bode well based on the disappointing second season of Vigil. However, if you enjoy suspense and seeing McClure under pressure, then this is definitely the show for you. A big explosion occurs!

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  • The second series of Trigger Point is airing on ITV1 and can also be found on ITVX.

Source: theguardian.com