Cormoran Strike, a war veteran turned private detective operating out of a tiny office in London’s Denmark Street, uses his unique insight and his background as a Special Investigation Branch Investigator to solve three complex cases that have eluded the police.
The TV adaptation of the Cormoran Strike books premiered on BBC on the 27th of August. So far, episodes have premiered on both The Cuckoo’s Calling and The Silkworm. Despite the fact that only wrote about The Cuckoo’s Calling on my blog, I love the entire book series and was really excited when I heard that it was being adapted for television. The TV series has largerly lived up to my expectations, in part because of the superb casting and acting.
I think I’m among the large majority of people when I say that, whilst reading the books, I imagined Cormoran to be a little older and slightly more gruff. At the same time, I believe that casting Tom Burke was an excellent choice. In terms of looks he comes as close to his book counterpart as it can get, but moreover, he delivers the part brilliantly. As Cormoran, he is equal parts grouchy as he is charming and funny and he really makes the character come to life. In addition, Holliday Grainger is perfect as Robin. They make for a fitting duo and have good chemistry, making their relationship slightly ambigious as the story progresses, as is the case in the books.
In terms of plot, the tv series mostly stays true to the original books, with same minor deviations. For example, while Robin drives them to an interview in the snow and uses her great driving skills to save them from crashing, in the series she avoids a roadblock by driving through a field. Since both variations build to her a character, these are changes I can easily live with.
Moreover, while the show is not as shiny, fast-paced and exciting as some other crime shows, I do think it makes it more raw, more realistic. And yes, there are still plenty of gory scenes. It is a crime show after all, isn’t it? In addition, there are plenty of scenes of the London setting and atmosphere. I’m glad they included those, since the descriptions of London were a big plus for me in the book(s).
The one thing that disappointed me slightly is that the pacing felt a bit off sometimes. The big reveal in The Cuckoo’s Calling felt rather rushed and anticlimactic in the series, almost falling flat.
However, it is a very enjoyable series and a good adaptation of the first two books. The adaptation of book three, Career of Evil, is set to premiere somewhere in 2018.