One of Foxtel’s most anticipated shows of 2016 would have to be the new six-part miniseries Secret City – but does it deliver?
The series opens with one of the darkest things in quite some time – a young woman, Sabine Hobbs, setting herself on fire in a Beijing park. Flashing ahead 6 months, we see a young man sprinting down Commonwealth Avenue in the dark being chased by two men in suits. After swallowing his sim card he jumps into the river. Here begins Secret City.
Whilst on her morning row, journalist for the Daily Nation, Harriet Dunkley (Fringe’s Anna Torv), comes across the crime scene where we discover the man is now gutted. At the staff meeting that day, where Sabine is a topic of discussion, Harriet is told by her boss (Huw Higginson, The Bill) to follow where it leads.
Up in parliament house, there are discussions about a war between China and America. Viewers are introduced to Minister of Defence, Mal Paxton, played by Dan Wyllie, who one could describe as a complex character who stands by his decisions. But there’s a lot more at play here then just politics.
Add the Australian Security and Intelligence Organisation into the mix and things are more complex than they appear. As Harriet searches for the truth about the dead body over the course of the movie-length premiere, she discovers there is a dark side to getting the truth.
The series has a standout cast that includes a few Australian A-listers including Jackie weaver, who has a commanding presence in her limited screen time as Labor powerbroker, Senator Catriona Bailey, Alex Dimitriades and Alan Dale as the Prime Minster.
Torv is a great choice for the lead role as she has a mesmerising presence which will draw you in and have you glued to the screen. Special shout out to Damon Herriman (Justified) who continues to pick interesting roles this time as the Transgender Senior Analyst, Kim Gordon
The production is slick and there is only a slight negative. The show packs a lot into its premiere and viewers could get lost, as the story moves quickly to set up a drama you can’t afford to miss.
Secret City delivers, portraying a thrilling political tale that is best enjoyed knowing limited details about the plot. Strap in for a twist-filled story that will be the best miniseries of 2016.
4.5 stars out of 5
Secret City premieres 8:30 pm Sunday, June 5 on Showcase