Bancroft is a modern-day British crime thriller of two, four-episode seasons and focuses around Detective Superintendent Elizabeth Bancroft as she juggles several cases at once, including the dealing with an extremely violent and merciless drug dealer and a past of her own that threatens to bubble to the top and demolish her career.
Bancroft is also another one of those programs where if viewers disdain spoilers, then they are strongly encouraged to read very llittle about the series as possible and just sit back and allow the story to reveal itself. It is also difficult to avoid revealing spoilers in this review, however, no spoilers will be revealed in this review.
Bancroft is portrayed by Sarah Parish, with Parish exhibiting a wonderful range and depth of acting with a wild range of emotions and behavior. In the role of Bancroft, after watching Parish, Parish is another one of those actors where it would be hard to imagine any other actor breathing life into a character such as she has done in Bancroft.
The main villain in Bancroft is one of the most compellingly horrible villains I have seen in some time, with the villainous acts growing in both intensity and depravity as the two seasons progress. The actor’s portrayal of this villain is done so well that not only does the viewer watch with apt attention in wonder of just how low this character can go, while in a later episode, is able to create viewer sympathy toward the horrendous character.
Season One starts out with Bancroft being detailed to crush a drug ring empire, while her ambitious underling, Detective Sergeant Katherine Stevens (Faye Marsay), is tasked with investigating a cold case murder from many years before. Stevens feels she is being pushed aside from the elite unit headed by Bancroft, but soon learns there is much more to the murder than she ever envisioned from the start.
Season One continues on with dual main plot lines of Bancroft’s drug investigation and Stevens’ murder case and ends with a tremendous cliff-hanger.
Season Two begins with revelations of the previous season’s ending and Bancroft receiving a major promotion for her successes. Under pressure from those above her demanding results or else, Bancroft continues in her pursuit of violent offenders in complex criminal cases.
While I preferred Season One to Season Two, mainly because it seemed apparent creators were trying a bit too hard to out do Season One, Season Two still delivers on surprises, storyline, and excellent acting from those in the program.
Bancroft is with graphic violence and is strongly reccommend to fans of programs such as The Shield and other high intensity crime related series.