What Happened To Gerry In New Tricks: I really believe that the BBC has made a monumental mistake by ending New Tricks after this season, but then its recent history has been nothing but a string of monumental blunders. Now that Dennis Waterman has left the series, as the only remaining original member of the cast, it has opened the door for Larry Lamb to take over as Ted Case, who we first met over the course of tonight’s episode. Now, it’s a totally different show, a fantastic example of refreshing and renewing on the fly, to put it another way, and it certainly doesn’t deserve to be scrapped.
Almost no humor could be found in this episode, and there was a deadly seriousness throughout the complex story that crossed two eras in unraveling the death of a Police Inspector in 1982 and the true role Gerry Standing played in his death, as opposed to the framed-up appearance that Gerry had actually killed someone.
The episode began with a funeral, which was attended by Steve McAndrew, Danny Griffin, Sasha Miller, and Deputy Commissioner Strickland, in other words, the entire UCOS staff, with the exception of Gerry Standing. It was too clear a signal, it couldn’t possibly be Gerry’s funeral, and it wasn’t going to be determined on the basis of a low-cost suicide.
Nonetheless, as the number of hours remaining before the case could be turned over to UCOS decreased, and as Gerry, with Danny in tow, raced down the crucial evidence that laid everything bare, while the official investigators, Sasha and Steve, ran up against further, cleverly implanted, frames became more and more limited, it became increasingly impossible for this to be anyone else’s celebration of the case.
As the only honest copper in a team that should have been investigating graft and corruption, Lamb not only appeared to hand over the crucial files that cleared Gerry, but he also provided a key clue to the one piece of evidence that Gerry had been holding back: that he had framed the deceased Inspector Ackroyd as an honest rather than a bent cop who was about to cough on the Chapman family.
After all, Gerry had warned Ackroyd and urged him to leave, and he had been convinced all along that he had done so until the corpse was discovered. Gerry knew he was guilty of Ackroyd’s murder, and he stepped up and made a statement in the face of the risk it might pose to him and his family.
It may seem cliché, but within the confines of the narrative, there was an inevitability to everything that culminated in the turn of a key in a car’s ignition and the detonation of a bomb that set everything ablaze.
So it turned out to be Gerry’s funeral after all, except for the fact that there was something phony about it. Gerry was well aware of what he was doing when he refused to enter Witness Protection, knowing that it would have ruined his daughter’s life if he had to take her along with him. But Gerry had no intention of doing so. Strickland eventually turned to Gerry’s mobster friend, Tommy Naylor, for assistance, but Gerry already had the situation under control (it would be interesting to see whether Naylor ever returns the favor; he will have to act quickly if he wants it).
Because the bomb detonated and the vehicle exploded, but Gerry was not in it at the time. Not wanting to abandon his old friends in their grief, the funeral is interrupted by a tweet that shows the Last Man Standing driving a red Mustang along a Brooklyn street, with the Last Man Standing in the passenger seat: it’s no surprise his Caitlyn didn’t seem that sad during the funeral.
So there you have it, Dennis Waterman: a flawless performance from beginning to end, and New Tricks is fully retooled and ready for a future that doesn’t seem to have much left in it. This is no longer an insubstantial air-fill; it now has ballast attached.