Think back to when you watched Bodyguard last year: heart racing, lump in your throat, a profound mistrust of every single character. It was torturous and we all loved it, which is why you’ll be thrilled to tune into the BBC’s latest crime thriller offering. Buckle up for The Capture.
An eerie, acoustic cover of "Somebody's Watching Me" is the soundtrack to the show’s trailer, which should give you a fairly big clue about where this series is going to go. But allow us to talk you through the backstory. Ex-soldier Shaun Emery (Callum Turner) has just had his conviction for a murder in Afghanistan overturned. At the trial back home in London, the court finds the video footage that had originally implicated him is actually flawed when a videography expert explains that the lag between video and audio on soldiers' helmet cameras makes the footage pretty unreliable.
With his name cleared, Shaun heads to the pub with his legal team, friends and family to celebrate. (It’s worth noting here that he’s not drinking, though. He stopped a little while ago.) Though he’s excited to have the weight of the conviction off his shoulders, Shaun’s still on edge. An old friend makes a misguided joke about what happened in Afghanistan and Shaun’s overcome by anger. He’s hurt, defensive and clearly worried about his reputation. But his priority now is to rebuild a relationship with his primary school-age daughter and forge a life for himself back on home soil.
Of course, we’ve been set up to know that it’s never going to be that simple. Cut to Shaun just getting into bed in the room he’s staying in at his granddad’s house. A storm of armed police wake them both up and take Shaun into custody under the instruction of newly promoted DI Rachel Carey (Holliday Grainger). She’s received a call alerting her to an abduction that has taken place in the time between Shaun leaving the pub and getting home. He and his car were spotted in CCTV footage and, given his very recent conviction (despite being found not guilty in the end), Rachel goes in heavy-handed to take him down. She’s desperate to prove herself in her new department, you see. Once she’s proved she can run a case such as this one, she’ll be able to progress even higher in the police force and move into a counter-terrorism unit.
"You’re under suspicion for assault and kidnapping," Rachel tells Shaun when they eventually sit down for questioning. He’s adamant that he didn’t do it so they show him the capture – the CCTV footage they have suggesting otherwise. It shows a completely different scenario from the one we watched earlier in the episode. Shaun tells the officers that it’s not him on camera and what they’re watching didn’t actually happen. The police suggest Shaun might've been under the influence and he reminds them that he doesn't drink. Rachel wonders if PTSD from his army service might've played a role but Shaun's not been diagnosed. Can we argue with a video that seems to show what happened pretty damn clearly, though? If your answer is no, you’re about to have everything you thought you knew (and trusted) about national security and surveillance challenged and, spoiler alert, it’s not very pleasant.
All sorts are thrown into question over the following five episodes. There's fake news and the impact it has on cases like this one. If intelligence services can monitor us all the time, can they interfere with what they're recording and to what end? How can we tell and who can we trust if a seemingly watertight narrative is put in front of us? Maybe Big Brother isn't just watching, maybe he’s meddling, too.
The Capture starts on BBC One on Tuesday 3rd September at 9pm