What’s absent from the latest BBC drama, ‘The Missing’, other than the obvious – Oliver Hughes? There’s no chesterfield sofa, that’s what. Granted the crime series is dramatic, gripping and shrouded in mystery, but it just isn’t the same without a chesterfield settee. Yes they’ve thrown in a couple of chesterfield club chairs, but it still isn’t cutting the mustard for us. Crime dramas need a chesterfield sofa: you only have to look at other BBC dramas like Line of Duty, Silent Witness, Luther and The Fall, for proof of that. These sofas bring a degree of certainty and order in a world turned upside down by darkness and secrecy.
All we know for certain is that Oliver Hughes is missing, after last being seen on a family holiday in Challons Du Bois 8 years ago. We don’t know why he was taken or who’s responsible and won’t find out for some time yet. Which characters we can trust, and who we should believe? Your guess is as good as ours. All we’re left with are questions.
Are Tony and Emily Hughes the wronged parties, or are they in fact really the bad guys? Is Julien Baptiste just a bumbling detective or is as sharp as Columbo underneath that rather worn exterior? Is Mark Walsh, the former Interpol detective a good guy, or just a sleazy and scheming manipulator with a dark secret? Is the wealthy Ian Garret Garrett the real deal and a genuine philanthropist, or is he just manipulating the unfortunate Vincent Bours for his own ends? What game is slimy tabloid journalist, Malik Suri, playing? Why does the sun never shine in Challons Du Bois? Will Tony ever take off his coat and pay for a drink? Questions, questions…. We’d have had something we could hang our hat on if only they’d slipped a chesterfield sofa in there. Something solid and reliable, but no we’re just left hanging there wondering.
So we’ll just have to spend the next 4 or 5 weeks wondering, and hoping that everything will eventually slot into place. With a bit of luck Tony, Emily and Oliver will finally be reunited and it will all end happily. Malik Suri will get his just desserts and Ken Stott can go back to playing a dwarf in Hobitland. With a little more luck, the BBC might pull a flanker and slip a lovely old chesterfield sofa in there just to throw us off the scent. Well, we can’t guarantee that, but we live in hope at least.