The Driver: Episode 2
Episode two of The Driver was a tour de force for David Morrissey, his taxi driver Vincent was front and centre in every scene. Ably supported by a menacingly intimidating Colm Meaney as The Horse, a deviously unaware Ian Hart as ex-con mate Colin Vine, and an lightly written role of his wife for Claudie Blakely, Morrissey carries the weight of this emotional hour.
The strength of the series has been the cast, the writing is OK, the story is getting better, but it’s the acting that keeps it gripping. Morrissey is playing the everyman central character of Vince McKee to a tee, the floppy fringe, the range of rain jackets, the world weary look in his eyes, it’s all on the money. Going against the themes of boredom and violence the best scene was his emotional breakdown outside his son’s door in the commune that he’s absconded to. What the Scouser does is subtle, and it’s easy to miss the nuances that he brings to this role. Whether it’s the easy banter and uninterested look while he’s lying to his boss, or the pained disgust when Col is being shinned in the head, or his convincing performance in front of the police, it feels real.
We’re learning more about personalities, The Horse is cold and calculating, and not to be crossed, Col is violent and manipulative when he needs to be, and Vince’s wife Rosalind is just a bit too whiny. If there’s one issue so far it’s the one dimensional character that Larkrise to Candleford’s Claudie Blakely has been written.
As the story progresses it’s getting more difficult to see how it’ll end well for Vince and his family. With a short three episode run it makes the storytelling efficient. But you hope it’s not rushed in the last few minutes as most short form UK series end up being.