Three episodes in- and it's fairly clear The Shadow Line isn't going to illuminate the human condition or tell us things we needed to know about the way we live now. What it is going to do is keep us guessing. Is Jonah a good cop or a bad cop? Is he faking his amnesia? Who killed Harvey Wrattan and why? What is Gatehouse up to? Who is Glickman? Is Joseph as nice as he seems? What does the title- borrowed from Conrad- actually mean? Are we in this world or- as Gatehouse's omniscience suggests- some Ashes to Ashes-type purgatory? Why is Rafe Spall channelling David Walliams? Every situation is a mystery, every character a mask.
It looks good. It borders on the pretentious. It's really quite exciting. The acting is a treat.