REVIEW: Heartbeat@ Opera House, Manchester
Manchester Opera sees the staging of ITV’s sedate Sunday night drama Heartbeat brought to the stage, which will undoubtedly delight fans.
It is a nice relief from the high octane dark themes of Marcella and Happy Valley. This charming production is like a comforting warm nostalgic hug rather than the punch in the face you get from the aforementioned programmes (brilliant though they are).
For some, the production may be a little too sedate, but it is an excellent recreation of the hit TV cop show set in the the Yorkshire Dales in the late sixties, which had viewers glued to their sets.
It has just the right mix of charming characters, comedy, drama and a very well behaved dog.
And there is certainly enough going on in the first half of the play to keep the audience interested and make us care about the characters for the explosive second half
Matt Milburn fills the boots of village bobby, Joe Malton well and Carly Cook does a great job as the scouse landlady, Gina. David Lonsdale is also excellent reprising the role of David Stockwell he played in the TV show alongside another familiar face – Steven Blakeley as PC Geoff Younger who bounce off each other to great comic effect.
With the shadow of the Troubles in Ireland as a backdrop, the drama is provided the by the appearance of the young Irish stranger McGuire played by Callum O’Neill pursued by undercover cop James Sheedy played by Jason Griffiths. But is everything as it seems?