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Written by: Jimmy McGovern

Produced by: John Chapman

Directed by: Antonia Bird

To Be Screened: September/October 2006  


"Seven years in Australia and they rebuild the whole bloody city" - Fitz


After living for seven years in Australia, Fitz has returned to Manchester which Judith and little Jimmy for Katie’s wedding. His once layabout son Mark is now married with a child. Fitz is horrified to find how much the city has changed in his absence: Instead of the industrial wasteland where he stalked his prey ten years before, Manchester is now a monument to economic prosperity and globalization. Even the police station where Fitz used to work is no longer there. Essentially, the world in which the original series was set no longer exists. Kenny Archer is a police officer and former soldier who was psychologically scarred by his tour of duty in Northern Ireland. He has a great hatred of America and Americans because 9/11 and “The War on Terror” made the war in Northern Ireland irrelevant and all his comrades who died have now been forgotten about. Kenny rings up the Samaritans and says that he wished he had the courage to kill himself because otherwise he will kill other people. He then goes to a nightclub where he murders an American comedian in a toilet because he had been making jokes about “The War on Terror” and said that the I.RA. were not in the same league as al-Qaeda in terms of being terrorists. The last person to see the comedian alive is a pick pocket who refuses to come forward with information.


Despite the fact that he is only spending one week in England, Fitz is called by the Manchester police to help investigate the murder. He is shocked to find the police station is now no-smoking and that he will not be allowed to interview suspects in the cells( as a civilian he should never have been doing this in the first place). Kenny’s next victim is a friend of the comedian whom Kenny finds to be repulsive because of his jingoistic, anti-Arab attitude. Kenny breaks into the man’s house and kills him while his mistress is in the shower. Kenny has good reason to believe that he will never be caught because he is one of the officers involved in the investigation.The murders seem to provide Kenny with enough emotional release to be able to function normally with his wife and children but only for a brief period of time. He is asked to guard the mother of the comedian he killed which provides him with the perfect opportunity for a third murder. Just when he is about to kill her, the cleaning lady at the hotel they are staying in comes into the room.


The pick pocket who was at the scene of the first murder is spotted by Fitz, Kenny and another officer running away with a woman’s handbag and they give chase. Kenny recognises the man and when he catches him, Kenny warns him to say nothing about what he the night of the murder and lets him go. Later that day, the pick pocket rings the police and demands money in exchange for information. They refuse and he hangs up. Kenny is then personally approached by the pick pocket who demands five thousand pounds in exchange fro his silence. Kenny agrees and they arrange a time and place for Kenny to give him the money. Fitz has started to suspect Kenny’s involvement in the murders and arranges an informal chat between the two of them. Fitz tells Kenny that he understands the anti-American feelings that Kenny has. Kenny talks about how he saw two of his friends killed in the North of Ireland and that he now feels that their memories are no longer being honoured because that war is seen as being unimportant. However, Kenny still refuses to admit to murder. At the time arranged for the hand over of the money, Kenny tells the pick pocket that he does not have yet. He then follows his blackmailer home and beats him to death before blowing up the building.


When Kenny’s wife arrives home, she finds that Kenny has locked her out of the house and has her children inside. Fitz goes in to talk to him. Knowing that there are police snipers outside with guns pointed on him, Kenny begins firing at the floor until the police are forced to shoot him. Not having the will to kill himself, Kenny forces others to do it for him. Meanwhile, Judith has flown back to Australia without Fitz and has taken Jimmy with her. Like Kenny, Fitz is now a dinosaur stranded in a world that has changed utterly and has no place for him.


Episode Guide written by Graham Price  


The Unofficial Guide To Cracker 1999-2006