Television: Red Rock got off to a rollicking good start

Review: Anyone tuning in to see shaking scenery and ropey acting will have been disappointed

Actors India Mullen and Adam Weafer from ‘Red Rock’, TV3’s brand new twice-weekly drama

Actors India Mullen and Adam Weafer from ‘Red Rock’, TV3’s brand new twice-weekly drama

A bloody body on the pier and a rather attractive sergeant on his way to investigate; a young couple snogging in the pub, taking breathers only to hint that theirs is a forbidden love (second only to a love triangle in the soap hierarchy of affairs), two warring families from either side of the tracks; and a rookie garda who discovers a dark secret about a colleague that could ruin both their careers - all in a scant half-hour of TV time. But that’s soap for you – and Red Rock, TV3’s new twice-weekly drama got off to a rollicking good start on Wednesday, introducing a range of strong, perfectly realised characters from the terrifying scheming matriarch of the moneyed Hennessy family (a gimlet-eyed Cathy Belton) to the comic relief from amiable jobsworth Paudge (Pat Ryan) a garda who’d rather be collecting rent from his bedsits than working.

Red Rock is set in a seaside town somewhere along Dublin’s coast - urban with a watery twist - and it is the first Irish-made soap since Ros na Rún kicked off on TG4 in 1996. The garda station is the main location (like Sun Hill, back in the days of The Bill on ITV) and that’s presumably where the main storylines are going to come from every week. There’s a pub, a café, and a soon-to-open supermarket where the Red Rock residents can casually bump into each other.

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