What’s still to come on M-Net in September

Blue Lights

THESE are the new series coming to M-Net 101 in the second half of September. Please let’s not even talk about how it’s almost Halloween and Christmas. Hands up who’s seen decorations or Santa-related ads?

Blue Lights premieres on September 20 at 10pm. With an 88% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, it follows three probationary period police officers in the Police Service of Northern Ireland assigned to the fictional Blackthorn Station in Belfast. One of the new officers, Grace, is a mother in her 40s, who left her job as a social worker to join the Police Service but only weeks into the job she wonders if she’s made the right decision. The focus of the series is also on fellow rookies Annie (Devlin) and Tommy (Braniff), who themselves are struggling under the immense pressure of the job.

In the first episode, Grace promises to help Angela, whose son has fallen in with a notorious gang. But with undercover agents watching, will she be able to keep her word? “Don’t sleep on this fantastically tense Belfast cop show,” says The Guardian, awarding it five stars. “This tantalising police drama sees naïve newcomers utterly unprepared for the dangerous situations they face on the job. You’ll be instantly hooked.”

The Law & Order franchise is remarkable. The OG first aired in 1990 and ran for 20 years. It was revived last year, with two seasons having aired since and a third (the 23rd) has been greenlit. In the arena of shows now, it’s so basic but yet so comforting, rewarding and easy to watch. You can put on any episode any time and simply fill space with the procedures without getting too deeply involved.

Season 22 premieres on M-Net on September 28 at 7pm. There are new regular cast members and series veterans Sam Waterston and Anthony Anderson reprise their roles of of District Attorney Jack McCoy and Detective Kevin Bernard respectively.

Also on the 28th is The Accused at 8pm, an American crime drama television series based on the 2010 British series of the same name. It premiered on Fox on January 22, 2023, and in March 2023, it was renewed for a second season. 

Says Variety: “Each of Accused’s episodes assays a court case in which murder is the charge, but judges and lawyers are glancing presences at best. Instead, we stay with the accused (hence the title) through lengthy flashbacks outlining how they got there and what mitigating factors played into their plights.

“In a TV landscape that tends to wildly over-privilege the prosecution, the impulse behind Accused is a worthy one: It’s heartening to see a show that acknowledges that often well-intentioned and good-hearted people find themselves in legal trouble for reasons not their own fault. In this way, and in its entirely dispensing with characterizing people in the legal profession, it’s a sort of anti-Law & Order.

In the first episode, in suburban Cook County, Illinois, successful neurosurgeon Scott Harmon (Michael Chiklis, yes please) is on trial for providing material assistance to a school shooter. Scott’s son Devin is suspended for threatening another student, and his father suspects that he is planning to commit an act of mass violence after finding a diary in his room filled with dark thoughts and fantasies of revenge.

Completing the triple bill of new shows on the 28th is The Undeclared War at 9pm, which follows Saara Parvin (Hannah Khalique-Brown) in the UK and Vadim Trusov (German Segal) in Russia, during a cyber and misinformation attack upon the UK. Simon Pegg is also in the cast.

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