Acorn TV has become a good source for British TV shows – and a few other international series – that you cannot find other places. A case in point is Black Work, a tight, tense mini-series that quickly leads us into a murder investigation full of secrets, deception, cover-ups, and conspiracies. While it may not match some of the best foreign TV series on Netflix, it’s an entertaining show that will keep you glued to your TV for a few hours.
Sheridan Smith is a highly sought actor these days for TV, movies, and stage in the UK, and also gets more than her fair share of attention in the British press. Here she plays Jo Gillespie, a constable whose husband is murdered as the series begins. It turns out he was also a cop, involved in deep undercover work – black work – that kept him away from his family much of the time. Jo becomes suspicious of the hush-hush nature of the probe, or lack thereof, into Ryan’s death, and starts asking her own questions.
It’s no surprise that along the way, Jo discovers things about her husband that she didn’t know. At the same time, she has to deal with police bureaucracy and her boss, who all seem to want her at least arm’s length away from the investigation. It’s unclear if Chief Constable Carolyn Jarecki (Geraldine James) is really on Jo’s side or not. The requisite number of twists and turns happen along the way, and if the Black Work TV series seems to follow a standard mystery thriller format, it all happens quickly enough that we stay interested.
Black Work was created and written by Matt Charman. Like The Fall, and Marcella, Black Work also touches on the challenges sometimes faced by women on the police force. It first aired on Britain’s ITV network in 2015. The three 45-minute episodes are currently streaming on Acorn TV.
While Acorn does not rival the overall quantity and quality of TV shows available on Netflix, Amazon Prime or Hulu, for just a few dollars a month, it offers a number of good foreign TV mysteries and dramas.