Rollup for another round of “Guess the Baby Killer!” The Guilty introduces us to yet another missing youngster, another set of grieving parents and another troubled yet determined cop hellbent on discovering the truth. It’s coming up to 5 years since 4-year-old Callum Reid (Daniel Runacres-Grundstrom) went for a Burton on a sunny May Bank Holiday and as his mother Claire (Katherine Kelly) publicises the ongoing search on the eve of the fifth anniversary she’s as convinced as ever that Callum is alive. Sometimes a mother just knows. But when husbland Daniel (Darren Boyd) gets the phone call from the police telling him of a child body buried just yards from their home the odds on that family reunion sail out beyond the horizon.
So who’s the nonce? A look at the runners and riders: the Reids’ nanny Nina (paedo rating: 4) and her rat fuck boyfriend Jason Byrne (paedo rating: 7) were up to no good on the night in question but he committed suicide after becoming prime suspect and receiving press harassment so it’s dramatically unsatisfying if he’s our beast. Dad Daniel (paedo rating: 5) can’t be omitted from the betting. He was a little too friendly with piping hot blond neighbour Teresa (paedo rating: 2) ¹ (Ruta Gedmintas last seen in The Borgias and before that ears deep in Laura Fraser‘s sainted pumpum in Lip Service) at the barbecue on the eve of Callum’s disappearance and may well have fucked and killed his kid just to get rid of the boner.
Teresa’s husbland Joe (paedo rating: 8) (Milo Twomey) was the oversensitive jealous type – punching above his weight with his matinee idol wife who cheated remorselessly on him. Perhaps he thought “Dan’s banging my wife – I’ll take it out on his kid”? Then there’s Callum’s brother, Luke (paedo rating: 9.5) (Jude Foley), who was only 6 when Callum disappeared. Who knows what the fuck kids get up to these days with your Ask.FMs, tumblrs and 4chans. What monsters lurk in their collective psyche?
Father Daniel (paedo rating: 5) can’t be omitted from the betting. He was a little too friendly with piping hot blond neighbour Teresa (paedo rating: 2) ¹ (Ruta Gedmintas last seen in The Borgias and before that ears deep in Laura Fraser’s sainted pumpum in Lip Service)
DCI Maggie Brand (Tamsin Greig) is charged with finding out. She was pregnant and honking her guts up when Callum went missing and with her boy Sam pushing 5 she’s taking a very personal interest in the case. She’ll be peeling back the layers of deception and betrayal that left Callum blocking a drain, Jason Byrne dangling from a rope and Claire and Daniel out of their minds with grief. Yeah, looks like this will be another laugh-fest.
She’ll be peeling back the layers of deception and betrayal that left Callum blocking a drain, Jason Byrne dangling from a rope and Claire and Daniel out of their minds with grief. Yeah, looks like this will be another laugh-fest.
Still and all it’s a good opener. The dual timeline of before the abduction and after Callum’s discovery creates a powerful pincer movement to crack open the truth of what went down that day in Arcadian Gardens. I don’t know what led Callum to his watery sewage drenched grave but I do know this: it’s never been a better time to be a child actor specialising in playing cadavers. Make hay while the sun shines, sunshine.
The verdict: Not guilty, your honour.
Marks out of 10: 7.5
¹ Put it this way. Any kid she does fuck can consider himself very lucky. It’s not abuse when they’re hot.