There's nothing quite like an unsettling crime drama to scare the living daylights out of us on Halloween, and Dark Heart - which premiered on ITV in late October - proved to be just that. Based on the Wagstaffe novels by Adam Creed, the six-part show very much lived up to its name, as it centred around a series of unusual murders.
Dark Heart isn't something you'd typically expect to see on ITV, which is mainly because the pilot episode was written for and aired on ITV Encore two years ago. When ordered to series, however, Dark Heart was promoted to ITV's main channel, and some of the more gory bits were removed, so as to be more appealing to a general audience. It's not just the disturbing narrative that made it less ITV, but also the gorgeous cinematography, which made it visually reminiscent of something you'd be more inclined to find on Netflix.
The attraction with Dark Heart very much lay in its protagonist. DI Will Wagstaffe was troubled, but he was also an exceptionally good detective. Tom Riley's performance was truly spectacular and, coupled with Chris Lang's writing, aided in making Wagstaffe one of this year's most memorable protagonists.
Lang is renowned for creating the popular series Unforgotten, but Dark Heart is a different kind of show altogether. It certainly wasn't for the faint of heart, but its compelling narratives made it incredibly hard to resist.