Lomax

Created by Paula Milne

Perhaps the most noir-ish thing PBS' MYSTERY! ever aired, Die Kinder was a fondly-remembered (by the few who saw it) six-part British import that aired in 1990. It followed the exploits of a young London mother, Sidonie Reiger, who is going through hell. Her two children have been abducted by her ex, a former radical activist for the German "Red Liberation Front," who has taken them back to his home in Hamburg.

Desparate, frustrated by both British and German authorities' apparent indifference, she enlists the aid of shady ex-pat American LOMAX, a former CIA agent and disillusioned Vietnam vet now working as a Hamburg private eye, who supposedly specializes in retrieving stolen children.

But it turns out that the children, both their parents and Lomax himself are just pawns in a much bigger game, involving Britain, Germany, various intelligence agencies, and an old terrorist group suspected of a department store bombing twenty years ago.

This was a truly fascinating series--defiantly provocative, murky and dark, miles away from most PBS mystery stuff. Miranda Richardson as Sidonie is great, but Frederic Forrest, as Lomax, is completely captivating.

Highly recommended. And a pleasant reminder that MYSTERY! was once capable of more than Lord Mucky-muck detectives and snoopy elderly lady sleuths.

Unfortunately, hardly anyone seems to remember this one, and as far as I know, it's never been released on DVD.

Author Milne went on to create several other series for british television, including Second Sight, about a police detective losing his vision, and Chandler and Co., about two middle-aged female P.I.s that was eventually shown on PBS. Although much lighter in tone, it's also worth watching.

SORRY, FOLKS

  • Die Kinder is not another Bruce Willis movie-- it's German for "the children."

TELEVISION

  • DIE KINDER
    (1990, BBC/PBS)
    Six one-hour episodes
    Written by Paula Milne
    Directed by Rob Walker
    Produced by Michael Wearing
    A Lionheart Television Production
    Starring Miranda Richardson as Sidonie Reiger
    and Frederic Forrest as LOMAX
    Also starring Hans Kremer, Tina Engel, Ulrich Pleitgen, Hanns Zischler, Sam Cox, Derek Fowlds, Peter Attwood, Valerie Buchanan, Willow Gryles, William Hoyland, Godfrey Jackman, Karl Jenkinson, Charles Lewson, Michael O'Hagan, Emma Rawson

  • "Direct Action" (November 14, 1990)
  • "Ghosts" (November 21, 1990)
  • "Hidden Agenda" (November 28, 1990)
  • "Catastrophe Theory" (December 5, 1990)
  • "The Gathering Storm" (December 12, 1990)
  • "Revolution Recycled" (December 19, 1990)

NOVELIZATION

  • Die Kinder (1993, by Gavin Richards, based on the screenplay)...Buy this book

Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.


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