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Mad Dogs 2 – second episode review

Max Beesley, Philip Glenister, John Simm and Marc Warren

Review by Tim Carson

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

For the first time in both series the relentless pace of Mad Dogs slowed a little allowing the four protagonists Rick, Woody, Quinn and Baxter a little breather.

Quinn was able to sit on the beach with an ice-cream, Woody and Rick retired to a quiet bar for a few drinks and a chat, while Baxter found time to get very friendly with a local. Naturally, this being Mad Dogs that downtime came with a price and wasn’t quite as relaxing as it could have been.

The fab four started episode six on the run down a mountainside after their car had been blown up and a mysterious man on a motorbike had turned up to check on their fate. They had the money but it was clear their problems were far from over.

After a long hot tramp and a quick sprint away from the motorcyclist they take shelter in the local village church where they hide the money inside the statue of the Virgin Mary. Outside they see the old woman from the village kill a goat which spooks them even further.

Carmen, the girl who helped them launder the money, arrives in the morning and explains that the old woman practises the religion of Santeria and as long as they stay inside the line she has drawn in goat’s blood they’ll be safe.

As they wait for rescue or capture the pause allows the four main stars to flex their acting muscles in some tense, touching and funny moments.

Baxter (John Simm) gets the girl as he and Carmen (Leticia Dolera), er, bond. Woody (Max Beesley) and Rick (Marc Warren) retire for some quiet time to the deserted local bar, but the conversation, especially Rick’s attempt to distance himself from all the criminal activity, is enough to drive recovering alcoholic Woody to drink. It’s a conversation that takes twists and turns from the funny to the sad to the scary and is excellently handled by the two stars.

It’s a smart development from the writers to let us see more and more into the minds of the individual characters especially Rick and Quinn with Rick clearly planning an exit strategy and Quinn struggling to come to terms with the fact he killed someone.

In the episode’s one poignant moment Philip Glenister gets to show us why he’s one of TV’s top talents with a few minutes alone as Quinn talks to God about how he can live with what he’s done.

Glenister also gets some one-on-one time in a fun scene on the beach with David Warner who plays Mackenzie, the villain wanting his 3 million Euros back. The dialogue is sharp and funny and Warner manages to be intimidating while using ice-cream as a visual aid.

The tension is cranked up again as the four learn they have 24 hours to return all 3 million Euros to Mackenzie and that they are now over 100,000 Euros short. What’s next for the gang plenty more trouble and lots more twists and turns in what continues to be one of the most entertaining shows on TV.

Mad Dogs 2 – first episode review