Rebus (ITV series)

(Redirected from Rebus (TV series))

For information on the Rebus word and picture puzzle see Rebus.

Rebus is a British television detective drama series based on the Inspector Rebus novels by the Scottish author Ian Rankin. The series, produced by STV Studios for the ITV network, was broadcast between 26 April 2000 and 7 December 2007, and consisted of fourteen episodes across four series.

DVD cover (Series 2–4)
GenreCrime drama
Created byIan Rankin
StarringJohn Hannah
Ken Stott
Gayanne Potter
Claire Price
Sara Stewart
Jennifer Black
Ron Donachie
Ewan Stewart
Jenny Ryan
ComposersSimon Rogers
David Ferguson
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series4
No. of episodes14 (list of episodes)
Executive producersEric Coulter
Philip Hinchcliffe
ProducersAlan J. Wands
Murray Ferguson
Production locationsEdinburgh, Scotland
CinematographyAlasdair Walker
EditorsChris Buckland
Jon Gow
Running time60–120 minutes
Production companiesScottish Television/
STV Studios,
Clerkenwell Films
Original release
Release26 April 2000 (2000-04-26) –
7 December 2007 (2007-12-07)

The first series starred John Hannah as the title character; and was co-produced by Hannah's own production company, Clerkenwell Films. After Hannah quit, the role was re-cast with Ken Stott appearing in three subsequent series, produced in-house by STV.

In 2022, it was announced the series would return to television, with Nordic streaming service Viaplay producing a new Rebus adaptation, starring Richard Rankin, the company's first original commission in the UK.[1]

Production edit

The first series is very different in both format and style. Hannah's portrayal of Rankin's world-weary detective was questioned by many who knew the books, as he did not physically match their image of Rebus. Hannah himself has said he felt forced into the role, having been executive producer, when his own choice for the role, Peter Mullan, was rejected by STV.[2]

Hannah's interpretation of the inspector has been viewed as deeper than the later productions, using narration to expand the viewers insight into the character's thoughts, or to reveal background information,[3] which never occurs during Stott's tenure. The earlier stories also retained the darkness of the novels and were more faithful to the original storylines,[3] while longer running times meant that each story could be less ruthless with Rankin's many asides and sub-plots.

"The First Stone" is the first and only story to be featured throughout the series which is not based upon a full Rebus novel, rather a novella from a collection of short stories. "Knots and Crosses" is the only story which, despite bearing the name of a Rankin book, does not share the plot.

Cancellation edit

In February 2008, ITV announced that Rebus had been axed, amid reports that Stott had told producers he did not want to continue in the role. ITV indicated at the time that further "one-off specials are a possibility for the future."[4] In April 2011, it was reported that the series could make a return to television, and a spokeswoman for STV confirmed a comeback was on the cards: "We fully intend to bring Rebus back in the future. There are no firm plans yet, but it will return."[5]

In 2012, Rankin announced that he has purchased the rights to the TV series back, and that he does not intend to bring Rebus back in the present format, having criticised the shorter format of the later series.[6]

Release edit

All three Stott series were released on DVD in the United Kingdom in 2007.[7][8][9] In Region 1, Koch Vision released the first series on DVD on 10 January 2006.[10] Series two through four were later released by Acorn Media between 2006 and 2008.[11][12][13] In 2008, Delta released the Hannah series in a four-disc box set.[14]

Cast edit

Episode list edit

Series 1 (2000–2001) edit

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1"Black & Blue"Stuart HepburnMartyn Friend7.7026 April 2000 (2000-04-26) (STV)
30 August 2001 (2001-08-30) (ITV)
Based on Black & Blue
Rebus investigates when a number of women are killed with the same modus operandi as that used by 'The Preacher', a prolific serial killer active in Edinburgh during the 1980s. But is a copycat killer at large, or has 'The Preacher' returned to finish what he started?
2"The Hanging Garden"Ben BrownMaurice Phillips5.8915 July 2000 (2000-07-15) (STV)
6 September 2001 (2001-09-06) (ITV)
Based on The Hanging Garden
Rebus investigates a suspected case of human trafficking and a growing territory war between gangster Tommy Telford and the jailed 'Big Ger' Cafferty. Rebus' daughter Sammy is knocked down in apparent hit-and-run. Can Rebus head off trouble, and can he track down his daughter's assailant?
3"Dead Souls"Stuart HepburnMaurice PhillipsTBA13 September 2001 (2001-09-13)
Based on Dead Souls
Rebus is forced to juggle two complex cases when an old friend approaches him to trace her son, who has disappeared, and a former colleague is killed in a freak accident, which asks the question – did he kill himself or was he murdered?
4"Mortal Causes"Mark GreigDavid Moore0.5220 September 2001 (2001-09-20) (STV)
1 November 2004 (2004-11-01) (ITV3)
Based on Mortal Causes
Rebus is forced to revisit a pact he made with a crime lord who identified who attacked his daughter in a freak hit-and-run, when his own son is murdered by a gang involved in gun running, right-wing extremism and racist white-power fanatics.

Series 2 (2006) edit

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1"The Falls"Daniel BoyleMatthew Evans9.002 January 2006 (2006-01-02)
Based on The Falls
Rebus investigates the murder of a retired obstetrician, who is found dead in his home having been the victim of torture. A clue left at the scene by the killer leads Rebus to the local museum, and puts him onto the trail of a stalker targeting a university student.
2"Fleshmarket Close"Daniel BoyleMatthew Evans6.276 March 2006 (2006-03-06)
Based on Fleshmarket Close
Rebus investigates the death of a Kosovan national who is found dead in a seedy Edinburgh slum, but a racist slur left on the victim's head leads him into contact with a group of local gangland bosses, and it's not long before a second corpse is discovered.

Series 3 (2006) edit

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1"The Black Book"Daniel BoyleRoger Gartland5.688 September 2006 (2006-09-08)
Based on The Black Book
Rebus finds himself drawn towards a cold case after a prostitute is buried alive beneath a famous Scottish landmark, but finds himself stonewalled when his prime suspect turns out to be a member of parliament – forcing his superiors to draft in a fellow DI to rein him in.
2"A Question of Blood"Matthew EvansMatthew Evans5.2515 September 2006 (2006-09-15)
Based on A Question of Blood
Rebus investigates a mass shooting at a local sports college, which has claimed the lives of two students and a teacher, but when one of the victims turns out to be his cousin's son, he decides that bending the rules is the best way to get a result.
3"Strip Jack"Robert MurphyMatthew Evans5.8122 September 2006 (2006-09-22)
Based on Strip Jack
Rebus investigates when the wife of a millionaire philanthropist, who is due to lead a conference on poverty in Africa, is found dead in the river, the morning after he was discovered having sex with a prostitute in a local brothel during a raid by divisional CID.
4"Let It Bleed"David KaneRoger Gartland5.7029 September 2006 (2006-09-29)
Based on Let It Bleed
Rebus takes on the case of a man who shoots himself during a meeting with the head of his local bank, but a photograph in his wallet leads him to a chemical plant preparing a pesticide for the third world, and a disgruntled ex-employee with a grudge over a false sexual assault claim.

Series 4 (2007) edit

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1"Resurrection Men"David KaneRoger Gartland4.815 October 2007 (2007-10-05)
Based on Resurrection Men
Rebus is forced to attend a training course at police school following a public outburst, with his colleagues unaware that he is actually out to expose two corrupt police officers who have been running a protection racket, and could possibly be linked to the murder of a drug dealer.
2"The First Stone"Colin BatemanMorag Fullerton5.1812 October 2007 (2007-10-12)
Based on "The First Stone"
Rebus is called to investigate when the naked body of the Moderator Elect of the Church of Scotland is found in a local cruising spot with the body of a naked woman. Forced to deal with ongoing political battles between the church and its ministers, Rebus must solve the case in time for the gathering of the General Assembly.
3"The Naming of the Dead"David KaneMartyn Friend4.7426 October 2007 (2007-10-26)
Based on The Naming of the Dead
Rebus investigates when an unidentified body is found in the grounds of a local Edinburgh hotel which is due to play host to the World Trade Summit. When another body is found in the grounds of Edinburgh castle, Special Branch intervene and warn Rebus off the case.
4"Knots and Crosses"Roger GartlandRoger Gartland4.947 December 2007 (2007-12-07)
Based on Knots and Crosses
Rebus finds himself being investigated by an old friend after a murderer walks free on a technicality. Matters are made worse when the suspect and his brother are found dead, and the prosecutor in the case is found to have been paid off to discredit Rebus and his colleagues.

References edit

  1. ^ Goldbart, Max (3 November 2022). "Ian Rankin's 'Rebus' Returns To TV As Viaplay's Debut UK Original". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 4 November 2022.
  2. ^ Fulton, Rick (13 May 2011). "In the lap of the Gods but John Hannah just can't get the work he wants in the UK". Daily Record.
  3. ^ a b "John Hannah vs Ken Stott: Who's The Better Rebus? | Rebus | Drama Channel". 28 May 2015. Retrieved 21 July 2017.
  4. ^ Leigh Holmwood (22 February 2008). "ITV ditches Rebus as axe looms over several underperforming shows | Media". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 July 2017.
  5. ^ "News – The Scotsman". Archived from the original on 1 February 2013. Retrieved 21 July 2017.
  6. ^ John Dingwall (14 September 2012). "Ian Rankin has rights back for Rebus". Daily Record. Retrieved 21 July 2017.
  7. ^ "Rebus : Seasons 1–2 [DVD]: John Hannah, Maurice Phillips, Martyn Friend: DVD & Blu-ray". Retrieved 21 July 2017.
  8. ^ Ken Stott (Actor). "Rebus : Seasons 3–4 (6 Disc Set) [DVD]: Ken Stott: DVD & Blu-ray". Retrieved 21 July 2017.
  9. ^ "Rebus : Season 5 [DVD]: Ken Stott, Stella Gonet, Jason Hetherington, Bryan Larkin, Ron Donachie, Roger Gartland: Film & TV". Amazon UK. Archived from the original on 28 June 2011. Retrieved 10 September 2017.
  10. ^ "Rebus: John Hannah, Sara Stewart, Ron Donachie, Gayanne Potter, Michelle Fairley, Paul Cunningham, Russell Barr, Mark Bonnar, Emma Currie, Hugh Ross, Anna Hepburn, Danielle Cook, David Moore, Maurice Phillips, Don Bell, Ben Brown, Ian Rankin, Mark Greig, Philip Palmer, Stuart Hepburn: Movies & TV". Amazon. Retrieved 21 July 2017.
  11. ^ "Rebus – Set 1: Ken Stott, Claire Price, Jennifer Black, Tony Donaldson, Natalie Dormer, Andrea Hart, Richard Johnson, James McAnerney, Eileen McCallum, William Ruane, Elayne Sharling, Sharon Small, Alasdair Walker, Matthew Evans, Chris Buckland, Alan J. Wands, Eric Coulter, Daniel Boyle, Ian Rankin: Movies & TV". Amazon. Retrieved 21 July 2017.
  12. ^ " Rebus - Set 2: Ken Stott, Claire Price, Jennifer Black, John Hannah, Sara Stewart, Gayanne Potter, Ron Donachie, Rony Bridges, Norman Campbell Rees, Adam Smith, Forbes KB, Ewan Stewart: Movies & TV". Amazon. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011. Retrieved 10 September 2017.
  13. ^ "Rebus – Set 3: Ken Stott, Claire Price, Jennifer Black, Gregor Gillespie, John Hannah, Sara Stewart, Gayanne Potter, Ron Donachie, Andrew Barr, Rony Bridges, Norman Campbell Rees, Forbes KB: Movies & TV". Amazon. Retrieved 21 July 2017.
  14. ^ [1][dead link]
  15. ^ a b c d "Top 30 Programmes – BARB". Retrieved 11 February 2016.

External links edit