In this new Sky One comedy – which features THREE actors in the lead who’ve both played key characters in Line Of Duty, John Major is dead… Long live John Major! No, not the former Prime Minister with the funny upper lip, but DI John Major (Daniel Mays), who was gunned down after an operation went wrong, but… they can rebuild him… they have the technology… Well, not quite, but they’ll have a go.
And as his boss, DCS Dennett (Rosie Cavaliero) says, “He was an excellent officer… We’ll name something after him… like a helicopter, or a canteen… a bird bath, whatever.”
Working with his partner, DI Roy Carver (Stephen Graham), things went wrong for Major originally, but one year on, and they’re back together again, and the augmented individual wants some help in explaining this to his widow, Kelly (Anna Maxwell Martin).
So, it’s a bit like Universal Soldier for the British police…
Along the way, Roy is very non-plussed about the situation because, as we learn very early on, there’s been something going on between Roy and Kelly; while John’s very cocky about the fact he wants to head out and find the baddies who took him down.
Code 404 is very daft, very funny with sharp, comic timing, and great one liners, such as when a situation puts Roy in hospital, John asks if he’s okay, and gets the dry response, “No, I died, but luckily enough, they brought me back to life and replaced my brain with a ZX Spectrum(!)”
Plus, as tech lady Alison Parfit (Amanda Payton) says to Roy, “Watch out for an unusual responses… and try not to get him wet!”
What, is he a Gremlin, now?!
And after the first episode, I’m now trying to figure out the fox and the chicken puzzle again….
So far, I’ve seen two episodes and they’re both great, and I’m looking forward to seeing the rest.
Code 404 begins on Sky One tomorrow night at 9pm, with all episodes being available on demand at the same time. The series is available to pre-order on DVD, ahead of its release on July 6th.
Episodes 1-3 Score: 8/10
Director: Al Campbell
Producer: Charlotte Surtees
Writer: Daniel Peak
Creator: Daniel Peak, Tom Miller, Sam Myer
Music: Oli Julian
DI Roy Carver: Stephen Graham
DI John Major: Daniel Mays
Kelly Major: Anna Maxwell Martin
DCS Dennett: Rosie Cavaliero
Dr Alison Parfit: Amanda Payton
PC Williams (not Judy): Michelle Greenidge
DI Gilbert: Steve Oram
DI Ryle: Emily Lloyd-Saini
Kristof: Richard Pepple
Liam Cleasby: Richard Gadd
Cleasby’s supplier: Montel Douglas
The Voice of A.L.: Anna Leong Brophy
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.