New Tricks (2003–2015)
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A website highlighting unexplained disappearances alerts the team to the death of young mechanic Christopher Collins seven years earlier. Sandra discovers he was really called Tommy Barton,... See full summary »


Tim Whitby


Oliver Brown (as Ollie Brown), Roy Mitchell (creator) | 1 more credit »


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Alun Armstrong ... Brian Lane
James Bolam ... Jack Halford
Amanda Redman ... Det. Supt. Sandra Pullman
Dennis Waterman ... Gerry Standing
Anthony Calf ... D.A.C. Strickland
Susan Jameson Susan Jameson ... Esther Lane
Claudie Blakley ... Lisa Carlisle
Robert Daws ... John Carlisle
Adam G. Goodwin Adam G. Goodwin ... Jason Hibbert (as Adam G Goodwin)
Hayley Jayne Standing Hayley Jayne Standing ... Alice West
Rufus Wright ... D.I. Mathew Hornby
Christopher Ellison ... Derek 'Smiley' Robinson (as Chris Ellison)
Nicholas Beveney Nicholas Beveney ... Anthony Walters
Alex Lowe Alex Lowe ... Andrew Hughes
Jonathan Aris ... David Crawley


A website highlighting unexplained disappearances alerts the team to the death of young mechanic Christopher Collins seven years earlier. Sandra discovers he was really called Tommy Barton, and was on a witness protection scheme having testified against drugs baron Derek Robinson. He was, though, a drug smuggler himself and was having an affair with his boss's wife. In tracing the killer the team is much aided by the hypnotherapist treating Brian's insomnia and they also learn that UCOS will not be terminated to save money. Written by don @ minifie-1

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Release Date:

29 August 2011 (UK) See more »

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Did You Know?


As UCOS interview an ex-police officer to discover Barton's real identity, a figure in a white hat can be seen reflected in the French windows behind the interviewee. See more »


[first lines]
Gerry Standing: A thousand uniform officers have gone already; it stands to reason there's going to be more redundancies.
Brian Lane: Yeah, you're right.
Jack Halford: You're being paranoid.
Brian Lane: Paranoid? Me?
Gerry Standing: Just because we're paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get us.
See more »


It's Alright
Written by Mike Moran
Sung by Dennis Waterman
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User Reviews

Full of life episode
18 February 2018 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Have always been a big fan of detective/mystery shows from a fairly young age, well since starting secondary school.

'Inspector Morse', 'A Touch of Frost', 'Midsomer Murders' (in its prime), 'Law and Order', 'Inspector George Gently', 'Criminal Minds', 'Murder She Wrote', you name them to name a few. 'New Tricks' has also been a favourite from the start (despite not being the same without the original cast in recent years). Although it can be corny at times (in an endearing sort of way) it has always been perfect for helping me relax in the evenings. Something that was needed during all the hard times endured in school.

"Half Life" is an excellent episode, living up to the consistently solid quality of Season 8 and in terms of quality is the opposite of its title. The story is continually gripping, even if there are elements that are not much new, and the intrigue and twists prevent it from being predictable. Not everything surprised me, but most did.

Visually, "Half Life" is slick and stylish as ever. The music is a good fit and the theme song (sung with gusto by none other by Dennis Waterman himself) is one of the catchiest for any detective/mystery show and of any show in the past fifteen years or so.

Writing is intelligent, thought-provoking and classy, while also being very funny and high up in the entertainment value. This is all mixed adeptly with a seriousness without being overly so that it doesn't feel like 'New Tricks'. Brian's insomnia subplot is handled beautifully and with taste and the whole UCOS dilemma has a not so surprising outcome but slots well within the story and doesn't distract too much from the case.

A huge part of 'New Tricks' appeal is the chemistry between the four leads and their performances. The chemistry is so easy going and charming with a little tension.

One of the show's biggest delights is Alun Armstrong, achieves a perfect balance of funny comic timing and touching pathos which was maintained all the way up to his final episode. It is also lovely here to see his role in the team and skills appreciated more all the time. James Bolam's Jack is the quietest, most sensible (mostly) and most composed of the team, with a tragic personal life that Bolam portrays very touchingly without any overwrought-ness.

The only woman on the team, Amanda Redman more than holds her own in what is essentially the boss role of the four. Dennis Waterman brings some nice levity without unbalancing things.

Anthony Calf is typically great as Strickland and there are typically solid performances, nobody outstanding but no weak links.

Overall, excellent. 9/10 Bethany Cox

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