The Level, ITV, Karla Crome

KARLA crome (Nancy Devlin) and LAURA HADDOCK (Hayley) For further information contact Patrick Smith patrick.smith@itv.com 0207 157 3044 ©ITV This photograph is the ©ITV and can only be reproduced for editorial purposes directly in connection with the programme or event mentioned above, or ITV plc. Once made available by ITV plc Picture Desk, this photograph can be reproduced once only up until the transmission [TX] date and no reproduction fee will be charged. Any subsequent usage may incur a fee. This photograph must not be manipulated [excluding basic cropping] in a manner which alters the visual appearance of the person photographed deemed detrimental or inappropriate by ITV plc Picture Desk. This photograph must not be syndicated to any other company, publication or website, or permanently archived, without the express written permission of ITV Plc Picture Desk. Full Terms and conditions are available on the website www.itvpictures.com For further information please contact: PATRICK SMITH

Peer pressure: Karla Crome (Nancy Devlin) and Laura Haddock (Hayley)

A rising female detective with an emotional attachment to a gangster is pitched into a world of danger

★★★ ITV, Friday, 30 September, 9pm

THE SCRIPT for this new ITV thriller was several years in gestation. It was time well spent because writers Gaby Chiappe and Alexander Perrin have come up with a taut gripper that has emotional punch.

HILLBILLY TV FOR ITV THE LEVEL on Picture shows: KARLA CROME (Nancy Devlin), ROBERT JAMES-COLLIER (Kevin O'Dowd), LINDSEY COULSON (Michelle Newman) and NOEL CLARK (Gunner Martin) For further information contact Patrick Smith patrick.smith@itv.com 0207 157 3044 ©ITV This photograph is the ©ITV and can only be reproduced for editorial purposes directly in connection with the programme or event mentioned above, or ITV plc. Once made available by ITV plc Picture Desk, this photograph can be reproduced once only up until the transmission [TX] date and no reproduction fee will be charged. Any subsequent usage may incur a fee. This photograph must not be manipulated [excluding basic cropping] in a manner which alters the visual appearance of the person photographed deemed detrimental or inappropriate by ITV plc Picture Desk. This photograph must not be syndicated to any other company, publication or website, or permanently archived, without the express written permission of ITV Plc Picture Desk. Full Terms and conditions are available on the website www.itvpictures.com For further information please contact: PATRICK SMITH

Karla Crome, Robert James-Collier, Lindsey Coulson and Noel Clarke

Karla Crome plays Nancy Devlin, a detective with a difference. She is inextricably linked to gangster Frank Le Saux – an affecting turn from Philip Glenister. Le Saux was a father figure to Nancy during her turbulent childhood. Meanwhile, his daughter, Hayley (Laura Haddock), became her best friend.

This compromising relationship has survived her rise to distinction as a detective sergeant. When we first meet Nancy she is being paraded before colleagues after saving her boss, Kevin O’Dowd (Downton‘s Robert James-Collier), from a lethal attack.

Nancy’s tracked by a killer

However, Nancy is also in the habit of giving Frank a wink if he ever comes under investigation.

When Frank then contacts her because he is in trouble, Nancy’s career is suddenly under threat, to say nothing of her life. As she struggles to avoid being implicated in a murder investigation, she is also being tracked by a killer.

HILLBILLY TV FOR ITV THE LEVEL on Picture shows: LAURA HADDOCK as Hayley For further information contact Patrick Smith patrick.smith@itv.com 0207 157 3044 ©ITV This photograph is the ©ITV and can only be reproduced for editorial purposes directly in connection with the programme or event mentioned above, or ITV plc. Once made available by ITV plc Picture Desk, this photograph can be reproduced once only up until the transmission [TX] date and no reproduction fee will be charged. Any subsequent usage may incur a fee. This photograph must not be manipulated [excluding basic cropping] in a manner which alters the visual appearance of the person photographed deemed detrimental or inappropriate by ITV plc Picture Desk. This photograph must not be syndicated to any other company, publication or website, or permanently archived, without the express written permission of ITV Plc Picture Desk. Full Terms and conditions are available on the website www.itvpictures.com For further information please contact: PATRICK SMITH

Laura Haddock as Hayley

The Level, which refers to an area of Brighton – where the six-part series is set – and the idea of being on the level, is a very effective thriller. It is fast and tense without implausibly stretching the story.

We’ve seen Karla Crome in series such as the excellent Prisoners’ Wives and Misfit. She has no trouble holding the limelight here. Laura Haddock, usually seen in big-budget nonsense like Da Vinci’s Demons, is spot on as the ballsy badgirl who was once close to Nancy.

Noel Clarke, Amanda Burton and Lindsey Coulson

Meanwhile, Philip Glenister, who is often so good in light crime series such as Mad Dogs or Ashes to Ashes, is a more emotional presence as Frank.

A fine cast also includes Noel Clarke, Amanda Burton and Lindsey Coulson.

The production does a great job with the seaside setting, making Brighton look both fun and dangerous. The cast, the well-crafted script and the production all come together brilliantly.

As an emotional drama and nailbiting mystery, The Level works on many, er, levels. Don’t be surprised if there’s a second series.

HILLBILLY TV FOR ITV THE LEVEL on Picture shows: PHILIP GLENNISTER (Frank Le Saux) KARLA crome (Nancy Devlin) For further information contact Patrick Smith patrick.smith@itv.com 0207 157 3044 ©ITV This photograph is the ©ITV and can only be reproduced for editorial purposes directly in connection with the programme or event mentioned above, or ITV plc. Once made available by ITV plc Picture Desk, this photograph can be reproduced once only up until the transmission [TX] date and no reproduction fee will be charged. Any subsequent usage may incur a fee. This photograph must not be manipulated [excluding basic cropping] in a manner which alters the visual appearance of the person photographed deemed detrimental or inappropriate by ITV plc Picture Desk. This photograph must not be syndicated to any other company, publication or website, or permanently archived, without the express written permission of ITV Plc Picture Desk. Full Terms and conditions are available on the website www.itvpictures.com For further information please contact: PATRICK SMITH

Alliance – Frank Le Saux (Philip Glenister) and Nancy Devlin (Karla Crome)

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