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Lethal White (TV)
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09/14/2019 - 11:46 am

Seconded for additional scenes with Ilsa & Nick. Is it too much to ask for Strike’s BMW to make an appearance? I’m praying that the Land Rover makes a comeback - it already feels like another character of the show.

I pictured Richard Rankin as Barclay but that might be because I’ve been watching Outlander! I’ve seen some people on Tumblr have mentioned Luke Pasqualino as a fit for Raphael.

Paul Butterworth, who plays Robin’s dad, wrote on Instagram recently that he’d been “booked on a big new TV drama for four days”. Could that be Lethal White? In which case it sounds like they are devoting a reasonable amount of time for filming the wedding reception.

Oooh I hope you’re right about the possibility of seeing the 1st footage in the new year! That will tie us over a bit! It might be because Strike was previously filmed in the autumn and winter, and then subsequently broadcasted in those seasons, but I have always felt that Strike suits a autumn/winter slot. So I’ll be quite happy to wait till the later half of 2020 *ducks head* 🙂

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09/02/2019 - 10:08 pm

With the adaptation of Lethal White about to start filming, I hope it’s alright in creating a new topic to discuss thoughts, speculation, concerns and hopes for the forthcoming series.

So what are your expectations? What must be kept that was in the book? Are you worried about scenes or characters cut? What should be changed? Ideal cast?

Obviously spoilers from Lethal White from here on!

These are my thoughts:

- With four hours to fill, I hope they don’t rush the key scenes and fail to do them justice by missing out chunks of dialogue from the book. Namely, the wedding, the whole hospital sequence, Robin leaving Matthew, the motorway and racecourse talks, and Robin and Raphael on the houseboat.

- I’ve seen conversations on Tumblr that people were concerned about the wedding being cut right down, or entirely, or viewed as flashbacks. There would be an uproar in any of those instances! My guess would be episode 1 opening with flashback scenes of Billy as a child, followed by the titles, and then opening with the wedding reception. They could probably get away with dedicating 10-20 minutes worth on the wedding. I could see them maybe cutting the fallout in the bridle-suite and the honeymoon period/missed calls though simply to get the plot moving on. Although I’d like to be proven wrong as we’d miss out on the frostiness of Strike & Robins relationship and see them rebuild it through the episodes.

- I really am not a fan of “Wherever You Will Go” by The Calling. If it has to be in, then hopefully the version by Charlene Soraia or a slower, softer version especially composed. Maybe Beth Rowley could do a cover?

- Keeping in the imagery of the swans, especially at the wedding and at the end of the book on the doors of the building. Parted at the beginning, together at the end.

- Will we see a “One year later” title card?

- The previous three series didn’t make it obvious that they were set in 2010 or 2011. We saw car models and reg plates, along with advertisements, from the time they were filming in 2016/17. It would be a bit jarring then to suddenly feature the 2012 Olympics in the background. I reckon they will drop it altogether, or replace it with another sporting event, or a political event.

- They obviously won’t be able to film inside the Houses of Parliament or the Department for Culture, so they will have to find locations with similar interiors. As done in the Bodyguard and the most recent series of Peaky Blinders.

- The return of the green dress done differently - Robin changing and coming out of the office toilet didn’t do it justice! Maybe Strike first sees her wearing it outside the event party and has a similar reaction to the one in Cuckoos Calling.

- Did any of the previous series mention at all that Strike was an awful uncle? I feel we would need to see this or for it to be explicitly mentioned for the scenes at the hospital to be more impactful.

- I haven’t looked at the places where Lethal White could be divided into four but I’d hazard a guess that episode 2 will end with Chiswell being found dead as the cliffhanger.

- Fingers crossed they managed with the script to involve Nick and Ilsa, and Shanker, more within the plot.

- The motorway breakdown/heart to heart scene will probably be altered to a country road for logistical reasons.

- Up the ante of the climax with scenes of Cormoran’s realisation and then the panic and terror when he’s racing to rescue Robin. At the same time winding up the tension between Robin and Raphael and that we actually fear that he will kill her.

- Episode 4 ends with Cormoran, Robin, Nick and Ilsa together on their curry night, happy and enjoying each others company. The three previous series, and books for that matter, seem to end on a ‘life/relationship changing moment’ for Strike & Robin. Cuckoos Calling was Robin offered a full time position; Silkworm - Strike putting Robin on a detective course; Career of Evil - “I do”. The ending to Lethal White felt rushed and a bit low key.

Other things I hope we will see:

- Orange juice!
- Cormoran’s disdain towards Sarah Shadlock.
- Cormoran thinking Robin is pregnant.
- Robin undercover in disguise.
- Cormoran wanting to be a better uncle and saying he wants to take Jack to the Imperial War Museum.
- “Hunger Strike: Car Journeys I Have Starved On”
- Robin keeping the champagne cork.

We will probably hear casting selections soonish but I did picture Robert Glennister as Jasper Chiswell. He played the corrupt Home Secretary during multiple series of Spooks and it would be a nice nod to his brilliant work on the audio books.

As for the filming and broadcast timeline:

Holliday mentioned on the Zoe Ball Breakfast show (Thurs 29th Aug) on BBC Radio 2 that she was starting on Strike this week. That will probably be for the read throughs and fittings and then actual filming starting the following week or the next and finishing before Christmas. I reckon we might actually get the first glimpse of Lethal White when BBC release their “2020 Drama” trailer in the beginning of January.

In terms of the post production period, it’s difficult to know. It could be complete and ready to broadcast by March/April but it then has to fit within the BBC’s plans for the year. It's unlikely to be broadcast whilst the Tokyo Olympics are on during July and August as that takes up the majority of the airtime on BBC1. Possibility is the August bank holiday or early September. Hopefully the BBC won’t hold it in limbo like their latest adaptation of War of the Worlds for the past 1 1/2 years - I think they would only do that if they knew Strike5 was coming out soonish and release it on a similar date to maximise publicity and interest. I just hope they don’t air it over four consecutive nights as it will be over before we know it and we’ll all be back to the waiting game for the next one!

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