By Any Means is very much like Hustle. It is created and written by Tony Jordan. It features flashbacks. It features flashy camerawork and strange camera angles. All very much like Hustle. Hard hitting drama it is not, but that really isn’t what it is mean to be which, as a result, covers some of the shows initial shortcomings.
In this series the main characters are undercover operatives for the police who are charged by a mysterious character played by Gina McKee to get people off the streets that the police just can’t seem to touch by using the traditional methods of law enforcement.
This group of people which in this episode just comprises of three people: Jack Quinn a maverick cop and the de facto leader of the group (Warren Brown); the rather glamorous Jessica Jones (Shelley Conn) and the techie Thomas Tomkins (Andrew Lee-Potts). They are all very photogenic and whilst they are not whiter-than-white they are basically good people who are just trying to make sure that people pay for the crimes they have committed but been falsely exonerated for.
The show is flashy, and looks great, but is very much a case of style over substance, but then again so was Hustle, and that was really popular.
Keith Allen was the person they were charged with getting of the streets in this particular episode and it was interesting seeing them pull the rug from under the characters feet bit by bit throughout the episode.
It was enjoyable to watch and nice to seem the get the bad guy in the end but I am not sure that I know any more about the regular characters at the end of the episode as I did when it started, and I hope that we will get to know the characters better over the course of this series, as we just don’t know enough about them at the moment.
It is an enjoyable enough way to spend an hour on a Sunday evening and that for me, at the moment, is enough to keep me watching, for the short term at least, whilst we get to know the characters which is where, I think, this show will live or die by the main characters rather than the plot lines.