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New Tricks
File:New Tricks Series 8.jpg
Created byNigel McCrery
Roy Mitchell
StarringAlun Armstrong (2003–13)
James Bolam (2003–12, 2013)
Amanda Redman (2003–13)
Dennis Waterman (2003–15)
Denis Lawson (2012–15)
Nicholas Lyndhurst (2013–15)
Tamzin Outhwaite (2013–15)
Larry Lamb (2015)
Theme music composerMike Moran
Opening theme"It's Alright" (vocals by Dennis Waterman)
Ending themeReprise
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series12
No. of episodes107 (list of episodes)
Running time60 minutes
Production companiesWall to Wall (2003–14)
Headstrong Pictures (2015)
Original networkBBC One
Picture format576i (SDTV) (2003–09)
1080i (HDTV) (2010–15)
Audio formatStereo
Original release27 March 2003 (2003-03-27) –
6 October 2015 (2015-10-06)[1]

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File:New Tricks cast.jpg

The original cast of New Tricks (back: Dennis Waterman, left: Alun Armstrong, right: James Bolam, front: Amanda Redman).

New Tricks is a British procedural comedy-drama that follows the work of the fictional Unsolved Crime and Open Case Squad (UCOS) of the Metropolitan Police Service. Originally led by Detective Superintendent Sandra Pullman, it is made up of retired police officers recruited to reinvestigate unsolved crimes. There have been cast changes, but the squad always consists of three men with a female boss. The series title is taken from the proverb "You can't teach an old dog new tricks". In February 2015, BBC One announced the show would end after series 12, which comprises 10 episodes.[2][3]


New Tricks began as a one-off episode broadcast on 27 March 2003. This attracted sufficient viewers for the BBC to commission a series of six episodes, which began on 1 April 2004. Eight-episode series were subsequently commissioned for 2005, 2006 and 2007. A fifth series was commissioned by the BBC after the audience share rose week upon week for the previous series.[4] In 2007, an episode from the fourth series received viewing figures of 9.25 million, becoming the second most watched programme on BBC One that week, and the most watched New Tricks episode to that point.[5] The fifth series continued this good run – on two occasions it was the most watched programme in Britain for the week, and the seventh episode gained a new series high rating of 9.36 million – second only to the X Factor that week.[6] The fifth series aired from 7 July to 25 August 2008. The sixth series finished location filming on 8 May 2009 in Central London and began airing on 16 July 2009.[7] The opening episode of series six was watched by 8.07 million, despite clashing with Five's The Mentalist (1.64m) and ITV's Living With Michael Jackson (3.64m). The second episode clashed with The Mentalist and the relaunch of The Bill on ITV, and was watched by 7.59 million.

Series 7 and 8 were commissioned by the BBC in September 2009, ensuring that the show would run until 2011.[8] The seventh series began airing on 10 September 2010 and completed its run on 12 November. The eighth series opened on 4 July 2011 with 9.2 million viewers, the show's highest rating for three years, and the first since the fifth series to break the 9 million barrier.[9] The third episode of series 8, "Lost in Translation", was the show's highest rated episode to date with 9.7 million viewers, becoming the most watched television programme of the week in the UK.[10] Episode 7, "The Gentleman Vanishes," surpassed this figure with 9.87 million viewers, and was again the top programme of the week.[11]

The BBC confirmed in September 2011 that a further two series, each of ten episodes, had been commissioned, to be broadcast in 2012 and 2013.[12] James Bolam, who played the part of Jack Halford, left the show, claiming that it had "become stale",[13] making his final regular appearance in the first episode of Series 9 and a guest appearance in Series 10, episode 8. In the fourth episode, Denis Lawson joined the cast, as the new character of retired DI Steve McAndrew.[14] Prior to the ninth series premiere, both Amanda Redman[15] and Alun Armstrong[16] announced that they would be leaving the show after the tenth series. The first programme of series nine was broadcast on 27 August 2012, and gained 8.52 million viewers, which was the highest rating of the week.[17] Only Fools and Horses star Nicholas Lyndhurst and EastEnders star Tamzin Outhwaite appeared in Series 10, which was broadcast in Britain between 30 July and 1 October 2013.[18] The opening episode of the tenth series gained an audience of 8.86 million viewers, making it the twelfth most watched programme of the year.[19]

Filming for Series 11 began in late 2013,[20] and Episode 1 of the series was broadcast at 21:00 GMT on BBC One and BBC One HD on 18 August 2014. Ratings fell considerably from season 10 to season 11 when most of the original cast left; season 10 had an average per-episode viewership of 8.35 million, while season 11 managed an average per-episode viewership of 5.75 million.

A twelfth series of the show began filming in the Autumn of 2014, and started broadcasting on 4 August 2015. It was also revealed that Dennis Waterman would be leaving the series in the early episodes. In February 2015 it was announced that the twelfth series would be the last.[3]

The series is broadcast in at least twenty-five countries, and is also available on DVD and via online streaming. New Tricks is produced by Headstrong Pictures for the BBC. It was formerly produced by Wall to Wall Television between 2003 and 2014.


Main characters[]

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Brian Lane
First appearanceSeries 1 Episode 0
Last appearanceSeries 10 Episode 4
Portrayed byAlun Armstrong
In-universe information
OccupationEx-Detective Inspector
SpouseEsther Lane
ChildrenMark Lane
  • Brian Lane (Ex-Detective Inspector) (Alun Armstrong) (2003–2013): Born in 1946, Brian 'Memory' Lane is an exceptional detective, possessing a keen attention to detail and a remarkable instant recall memory for obscure details regarding cases and officers who investigated them. He often gets around by bicycle. He is married to long-suffering but caring Esther; they have an adult son called Mark. Brian is socially inept and eccentric, a recovering alcoholic with obsessive-compulsive personality disorder. He therefore has a tendency to get himself into trouble, despite good intentions. He left the force under a cloud, having been held partly responsible for the death of Anthony Kaye, a prisoner in Brian's custody at the height of his alcoholism. Brian maintained that it was a conspiracy against him, and was initially consumed with discovering who was behind it; his colleagues believed that he simply made a mistake and would not admit it. In Series 5, following Jack's temporary disappearance and several bad experiences on cases, Brian resumes drinking, and attends Alcoholics Anonymous meetings again. When she finds out, Esther walks out, and later forces Brian into treatment; he has not been shown to have suffered lapses since. Brian is an AFC Wimbledon fan, and he once misses a celebratory drink with his UCOS mates to support his team. A keen war-gamer, in one episode he digs out his old board and figurines and wins a tournament. In the first episode of Series 10, Brian assaults the last serving officer that he believes to be involved in the conspiracy following Kaye's death, in a final effort to achieve justice. In the second episode, Brian at last proves that three policemen in charge of the custody suite, whose failure to check on Kaye allowed him to die from drug-related complications, then conspired to cover up their own culpability and pin blame on the arresting officer, Brian. Rather than risk another cover-up, Brian passes on a taped confession by the senior officer to Kaye's mother, which in turn forces Strickland to fire Brian. Actor Alun Armstrong left the show after filming the tenth series.[16]

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Jack Halford
First appearanceSeries 1 Episode 0
Last appearanceSeries 10 Episode 8
Portrayed byJames Bolam
In-universe information
OccupationEx-Detective Chief Superintendent
SpouseMary Halford (deceased)
  • John 'Jack' Halford (Ex-Detective Chief Superintendent) (James Bolam) (2003–2012, 2013): The highest-ranking retired officer on the team, and the first to be approached by Sandra when setting up UCOS, Jack Halford is the unofficial second-in-command. He is Sandra's mentor on numerous occasions, having been her boss on the murder squad. Jack retired to care for his dearly-loved wife Mary, who had been the victim of a hit-and-run. He is still haunted by her death, partly because nobody was charged in connection with it, although in Series 4 it becomes common knowledge that Ricky Hanson was responsible. After being frustrated by Hanson's acquittal in his trial for attempted murder, Jack briefly disappears, but is found by Brian, and later returns to UCOS. Hanson is eventually charged with killing Mary and imprisoned. Jack still speaks to Mary's memorial in his garden, seeking her help with solving cases. A softly-spoken and gentle man, he nevertheless possesses a quick and sometimes violent temper that he unleashes on suspects, although he will often become calm when he has reached the endgame, further unsettling suspects to achieve a confession. Jack has little time for the internal politics of the force, and is openly disdainful of those who lie, obstruct or mislead the police. Jack later leaves, giving only a day's notice, claiming that he has decided to retire to France and does not want to provide his colleagues time to talk him out of it. Brian correctly deduces that Jack has a terminal illness, and only has a short time to live, but promises not to tell the others until after Jack's death.[13][21] He returned as an illusion conjured by Sandra in series 10, episode 8 in the UCOS office, encouraging her in her decision to move on and broaden her horizons elsewhere.

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Sandra Pullman
First appearanceSeries 1 Episode 0
Last appearanceSeries 10 Episode 8
Portrayed byAmanda Redman
In-universe information
OccupationDetective Superintendent
FamilyGordon Pullman (father)
  • Detective Superintendent Sandra Pullman (Amanda Redman) (2003–2013): Born in 1961, Sandra is the original head of the unit, being the only currently serving police officer – and at the time the only woman – in UCOS. Sandra was a high flyer in Greater London's Metropolitan Police Service until the shooting of a dog during a hostage rescue, which is a running joke during the early series. Her career consequently stalled; and she is made to take charge of UCOS, initially against her will. Ambitious and competitive, she has sacrificed personal life in pursuit of a career and likes to be in control of every situation. A running sub-plot involves Pullman's unsuccessful love life, which is mostly shown as a string of unsatisfactory relationships and numerous failed efforts at romance, including an attempt at speed dating. Sandra is often exasperated by her colleagues' eccentricities and their willingness to bend the rules, although she doesn't always play by the rulebook herself. Initially reluctant to lead the squad, she warms to her colleagues and views them as her friends. She believed her father, Detective Inspector Gordon Arthur Pullman, who was awarded the Queen's Medal for Bravery, who died in 1975, suffered a heart attack. It is only during her career at UCOS that she learns he committed suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning, as he was about to be arrested by Jack Halford for attempting to cover up killing a small-time criminal and pimp. Her friendship with Jack is only damaged for a time, but her father's legacy continues to haunt her life and her career. She leaves UCOS after episode 8 of series 10.[15]

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Gerry Standing
First appearanceSeries 1 Episode 0
Last appearanceSeries 12 Episode 2
Portrayed byDennis Waterman
In-universe information
OccupationEx-Detective Sergeant
FamilyNorman Lestade (father)
  • Gerry Standing (Ex-Detective Sergeant) (Dennis Waterman) (2003–2015): Born Gerard Lestade, the son of Smithfield Market butcher Norman Lestade, Gerry changed his name as he did not get along with his father. He loudly protests against his French Huguenot background, preferring to be known as a Cockney, raised in Bermondsey. He is nicknamed "Last Man Standing", because of his refusal to take backhanders (bribes) when his squad were paid off by a gangster. A 'Jack the Lad', Gerry is an old-school police officer. He was a 'thief-taker', who passionately enjoyed catching criminals, but nevertheless mixed easily with them, leading to allegations of corruption. The final straw occurred when his boss, Don Bevan, wrongly accused him of sabotaging a stake-out by beating a young girl, prompting Gerry to break Bevan's jaw. Although he always denied corruption, he quit before he could be disciplined, with no remorse for hitting Bevan. He has three ex-wives, all of whom remain on amicable terms; he still occasionally seduces them, and is devoted to his daughters, although he regularly complains about financial strain. Despite becoming a grandfather, he maintains his devil-may-care lifestyle, insisting that he is "a naughty boy, not a bastard". Along with his familial commitments, he has a continuing interest in gambling, and thus joined UCOS for financial reasons. Gerry owns a 1977 Triumph Stag roadster (1974 in the pilot episode),[22] and has a passion for cooking fine food for his extended family and colleagues. After a tense beginning, he and Sandra share a mutually respectful but barbed friendship. They sometimes pose as husband and wife when undercover. In Series 10, Gerry is eventually left as the last original member of UCOS, and his first impressions of his two new colleagues are not favourable; he believes Dan Griffin was planted by the Murder Squad, and his new boss Sasha Miller only got the job due to her husband's rank in the force. Gerry even threatens to leave when Sasha responds to his accusations by revealing that she attempted to get forensic evidence without informing her new team, but by the end of the case he has come to respect her. In September 2014, Dennis Waterman announced that he would be leaving the show in November after filming two new episodes of the next series. As a result of a cold case in which Gerry is unsuccessfully framed for murder, a major gangster is convicted despite several attempts on Gerry's life, and he decides to fake his death to protect his family. At his funeral, a text to Sasha reveals he has retired to America. The title of his final episode, "Last Man Standing", refers to his surname, and also that he is the last original member of the team from the first series.

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Steve McAndrew
First appearanceSeries 9 Episode 4
Last appearanceSeries 12 Episode 10
Portrayed byDenis Lawson
In-universe information
OccupationEx-Detective Inspector
SpouseTrisha McAndrew (divorced)
ChildrenStuart McAndrew
  • Steve McAndrew (Ex-Detective Inspector) (Denis Lawson) (2012–2015): Retired Detective Inspector Steve McAndrew from Glasgow joins the team following Jack Halford's departure in A Death in the Family, after helping the team with a reopened case involving a missing girl. Described as "a bundle of energetic optimism with a tendency to get personally involved in the cases he's working on", and "the antithesis of Brian Lane's eternal pessimism", Steve has a reputation for being a whirlwind, and bringing anarchy to otherwise calm proceedings.[14] During the course of the series, he is revealed to have an ex-wife called Trisha, who had an affair with a corrupt detective from Glasgow named Frank McNair. In an argument with his wife, Steve lost his temper and threw a radio across the room, which led to Trisha getting custody on their son Stuart, and Steve became desperate to reunite with his son. He is in a relationship with girlfriend Charley, although it is implied in Series 10 that it has suffered following his move to London. Steve is considered to be the polar opposite of Brian, as he prefers a more hands-on approach to work. He and Gerry got to bond and became fast friends. Despite being a year older than Gerry, he is a lot fitter and healthier. At the conclusion of the series, with his son having moved to Australia, Steve decides to get his private investigator's licence and move there himself.

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Dan Griffin
First appearanceSeries 10 Episode 5
Last appearanceSeries 12 Episode 10
Portrayed byNicholas Lyndhurst
In-universe information
OccupationEx-Detective Chief Inspector
SpouseSarah Griffin
ChildrenHolly Griffin
  • Dan Griffin (Ex-Detective Chief Inspector ) (Nicholas Lyndhurst) (2013–2015): A retired Detective Chief Inspector with experience in both the Murder Squad and the Diplomatic Protection Group, recommended by Brian Lane following his departure. He is a reserved character who can nevertheless provide surprising insights. His aloof manner rubs the team up the wrong way in his first case. While Sandra admires his abilities and knowledge, Gerry is initially convinced that he has been planted by the Murder Squad to find out about the case. He has a disabled teenage daughter, Holly, who enjoys jazz music. Dan's wife Sarah is in a secure unit at a mental hospital – Danny eventually tells Sasha that she suffered a neuropathic condition that caused her delusions, which eventually led to her harming herself, Dan and people in the street. Medication failed to ease her illness and she was committed after trying to drown Holly, who was then aged 13. Although he loved her deeply, Dan had long abandoned hope of ever being with her again, and is thus deeply conflicted when she finally begins to respond to new medicine. At the conclusion of the series, although initially reluctant to leave Sarah as he is all that she has left despite her condition, Dan decides to take a new job offer to be a criminal analyst for Interpol, moving to Aberdeen to be with his new lover.

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Sasha Miller
First appearanceSeries 10 Episode 9
Last appearanceSeries 12 Episode 10
Portrayed byTamzin Outhwaite
In-universe information
OccupationDetective Chief Inspector
  • Detective Chief Inspector Sasha Miller (Tamzin Outhwaite) (2013–2015): Fresh from her role as a DI in the Kidnap Unit, newly promoted DCI Miller is firm, feisty and fair with an inclusive and modern management style. She did not expect such a posting as her first role as a DCI, but she is intrigued by the UCOS success rate. Winning the respect of Gerry, Dan and Steve proves a challenge; she is initially accused by Gerry of doing nothing, and when she reveals that she has been secretly working to locate where a murder weapon was found, the team react angrily at being kept out of the loop. She is married to a fellow Met officer and has two children away at university. After cracking her first UCOS case, Sasha discovers that her husband has been having an affair, which brings her stable home life to a sudden end. Sasha is shot in Series 12 by someone trying to kill Gerry Standing, leaving her confined to a wheelchair for the first few episodes of Series 12. Outhwaite previously appeared in Series 9 episode 6, playing the mother of a young rising tennis star who died in suspicious circumstances. At the conclusion of the series, despite Strickland's promotion saving UCOS, Sasha decides to accept a promotion to head a new Honour Killing unit.

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Ted Case
First appearanceSeries 12 Episode 2
Last appearanceSeries 12 Episode 10
Portrayed byLarry Lamb
In-universe information
OccupationEx Detective Chief Inspector – Former Head of Operation Trident Command Unit (Gun Crime)
  • Ted Case (Ex Detective Chief Inspector Ex Head of Operation Trident Command Unit (Gun Crime)) (Larry Lamb) (2015): Ted Case first appears when Gerry Standing visits him to gain evidence of Ronald Sainsbury's corruption. After Gerry's supposed death, Ted was asked to stand in as temporary Head of UCOS while the team's current leader Sasha Miller recovered from a shooting. Ted is extremely superstitous and has many quirky tendences. He is in a relationship with a man named Pat. At the conclusion of the series, he decides to use his retirement to go travelling in a camper van with Pat as they had planned before he was assigned to UCOS.

Recurring characters[]

  • Deputy Assistant Commissioner Donald Bevan (Nicholas Day / Tim Woodward in the Pilot) (2003–2004): Deputy Assistant Commissioner Donald Bevan is the founder of UCOS, originally intending it as a public relations gesture, to prevent an ex-convict from suing the Met for wrongful arrest. In contrast to the team, he is stereotypically obsessed with modern bureaucracy and buzzwords. Relations between him and the team are strained: UCOS's successes anger him as they are achieved in the 'wrong' way, and sometimes show serving officers and the respectable people Bevan wishes to associate himself with to be careless and even corrupt. He knows both Jack Halford and Gerry Standing personally, and strongly opposes Standing's inclusion in the team. Bevan claimed that Standing had taken a bribe for deliberately fouling up a stake-out of a gangster he knew through greyhound racing. Standing, meanwhile, blamed Bevan for the mistake, saying that his superior's choice of position meant that everyone knew the police were there, and so when Gerry left to tend to a badly beaten girl found in a nearby flat, and his partner absconded, the gangster got away with the money. Bevan then accused Standing of beating the girl himself, which was what caused Gerry to break his jaw. In his final appearance, he tries to get Sandra Pullman hired by SO10 (covert operations), and suffers politically as a result.
  • PC Izzy Clark (Chiké Okonkwo) (2003–2004): PC Izzy Clark is assigned to the team to help them with their IT needs and administration, though he soon becomes a valued member of the team. Unlike the retired members of the team, Izzy relies completely on modern policing techniques, an asset valued highly by DAC Donald Bevan. When Bevan's attempt to hire Sandra Pullman onto S010 fails, he pulls Izzy out of UCOS and instead offers him a place training with a firearms unit.
  • Esther Lane (Susan Jameson) (2003–2013): Esther is Brian Lane's long-suffering wife: they have been married for nearly thirty years. Esther and Brian met when he arrested her for attempting to steal a copy of Lady Chatterley's Lover from a library. Brian once suspected Esther of being a spy sent to report on his activities, when he discovered a link between her and a high-profile protest group. They have an adult son, Mark, who is rarely spoken about, but who often attends AFC Wimbledon football matches with his father. Esther often offers Brian advice and help with the cases he is working on. Susan Jameson, who plays Esther, is married to co-star James Bolam.
  • Jayne Standing (Natalie Forbes) (2003–2007) Jayne is Gerry Standing's ex-wife and his most frequent on-off lover. She appears to be good friends with his other two ex-wives and of the three of them is the one who finds herself most often seduced by Gerry. She was last seen visiting him in hospital after a car accident at the beginning of the fourth series.
  • Deputy Assistant Commissioner Robert Strickland (Anthony Calf) (2005–2015): Deputy Assistant Commissioner Robert Strickland is the team's boss. A political animal who enjoys basking in reflected glory of UCOS's clean-up rate, his choice of cases is influenced by a desire to make his department look good. Despite this, he is a strong supporter of the UCOS team and has used his influence to protect them when necessary. He has two unseen children from a past marriage. Although he worked with Whitehall intelligence operative Stephen Fisher before the force, Strickland is always wary of him and will defend his officers when Whitehall attempts to manipulate them in socially sensitive cases. Despite being a somewhat self-serving officer, he has nonetheless been quite supportive of their actions. He adamantly refused to allow Fisher to strongarm the team into working for him despite the fact that Fisher could seriously damage his career. In another instance, wherein the team made a collar and got a less-than-desirable result that would possibly cause a small political storm, Strickland made it clear that he had wanted the case investigated regardless, aware that it was unlikely to end happily. In more recent series, Strickland's political motives are outweighed by his desire to let UCOS do its work, and he uses his political savvy to navigate through the quagmire of potential landmines. Though he will still discipline the team when they blatantly break rules, he is willing to accept their actions if a result is achieved. Strickland even subtly gave Brian a chance to explain himself when he was forced to fire him, and it was only when Brian made it clear that he stood by his actions that Strickland finally told him to go. At the end of the eleventh series, Strickland reveals he has fathered a third child. The finale sees him promoted to Assistant Commissioner, saving UCOS from the political machinations of his predecessor.
  • (Dodgy) Roger McHugh (Keith Allen) (2005-2011): Later nicknamed 'Roger the Dodger', Roger is a former police officer, notorious for his inept police work and history of selling out, who later becomes a somewhat ineffective private investigator. He appears in two episodes; the season 2 episode "Family Business" and much later in the season 8 episode "End of the Line". He requires a great deal of persuasion to reveal any information about his previous dealings and associations and only cooperates after the UCOS team threaten his reputation and work. He changes his name in his second appearance and attempts to climb out of a window to escape Gerry and Brian's questioning. He has a sleazy personality and is regarded with contempt by most of the people who meet him.
  • Emily Driscoll (Hannah Waterman) (2006–2010): Emily Driscoll is a trainee police officer who turns up at Gerry's house saying that she thinks he is her father. Unbeknown to her, he performs a DNA test that proves he is not, though does not have the heart to tell her. She later realises that he has lied when he gives evidence in court relating to Ricky Hanson, when he hesitates before claiming that Emily is his daughter. Emily ignores his phone calls when he tries to apologise, although she eventually allows Gerry to continue as a fatherly figure in her life. Emily is eager to be an excellent police officer like Gerry, and proves successful, although she does become annoyed when Jack and Brian are temporarily placed under her command and both choose not to follow modern procedure. Hannah Waterman, who plays Emily, is Dennis Waterman's daughter.
  • Ricky Hanson (David Troughton) (2006–2009): Ricky Hanson is a career criminal whom Jack and Sandra were investigating for at least three murders in Jack's last case before he retired. This was no coincidence, as an investigation by UCOS several years later eventually revealed that Hanson had run over Jack's wife, Mary. Jack retired to care for Mary, although she did not live very long after the incident, which was thought to be a simple hit-and-run. When Jack confronts Hanson, he cruelly confesses the crime in detail, prompting Jack to attempt revenge by running the criminal down, but Jack is prevented from doing so. Hanson later attempts to murder Jack in hospital by smothering him with a pillow, but is stopped by Brian. When Hanson attempts to strangle Brian, Jack strikes him with an oxygen cylinder. Hanson is subsequently found not guilty on the charge of attempted murder, although in an apparent continuity error no reference is made to a ward nurse having been attacked by him during the incident. Later, in the sixth series, Hanson is linked to the disappearance of two Anti-Fascist activists. UCOS discover from Frank Patterson that Hanson's son, Luke, was in the car that ran down Mary. Luke admits this when it is revealed that Ricky has had an incestuous relationship with his secret daughter. Luke also had a relationship with the girl, although neither knew they were half-siblings at the time. Ricky is arrested for running down Mary, as well as the murder of the activists, and is sent to prison.
  • Grace Pullman (Sheila Hancock) (2007–2011): Grace is Sandra Pullman's mother and the widow of Sandra's father, Gordon, who committed suicide by carbon monoxide inhalation. She is reunited with Sandra when she asks her to help choose a care home because of her recent battle with Ménière's disease. Their decision uncovers a murder which prevents Grace from moving into her desired home, prompting Jack, Brian and Gerry to investigate undercover without Strickland's knowledge. She later suffers a stroke, causing her to reveal to Sandra the truth about her father's death after Sandra looks into a closed file. Their attempts to heal their rift throughout the series fail; when briefly living with Sandra, Grace reflects that instead of bringing them together, Gordon's death drove them further apart.
  • Frank Patterson (Phil Daniels) (2009–2010): Patterson is a short-tempered, old-fashioned copper, a former police colleague of Gerry's. He and Gerry fell out over a woman. They reunite when Frank is interviewed over an investigation of the disappearance of two student activists, which leads to UCOS's old enemy Ricky Hanson. Frank provides information crucial in Hanson's arrest for killing the activists, and then assists in securing his conviction for the attack on Mary Halford. Frank returns to have the team reinvestigate an armed robbery and several murders in the 1980s—he suspects that a now senior officer might have tipped off the robbery's ringleader for a cut and then conspired to cover it up.
  • Stephen Fisher (Tim McInnerny) (2011–2012): Fisher is a high-ranking Whitehall intelligence operative (and old acquaintance of DAC Strickland) who frequently uses UCOS operatives to serve his own ends, usually involving shady government deals. He first appears in "The Gentleman Vanishes", ostensibly as a supporter of UCOS advising Strickland to avoid a professional hitman. However, he does not always follow his orders, as he gives information that allows the team to attempt to arrest the hitman, although the operation does not go according to plan. In "A Death in the Family", Fisher blackmails the reluctant ex-cops into helping him with a case relating to government dealings with the Chinese by unearthing personal secrets, and consolidates his minimal respect for the team with jibes about the detectives' weaknesses, particularly Brian Lane's alcoholism. However, he shows some regard for Jack Halford, calling him 'professional to the last'. When Jack passes sensitive documents regarding the case to a contact in the press, it was revealed that this was Fisher's intention all along—the information will now enter the public domain with only Halford at risk of being charged under The Official Secrets Act, and the scandal's seriousness will ultimately protect him from recriminations. In the final episode of the ninth series, "Part of a Whole", it transpires that Strickland first knew Fisher at Sandhurst and was part of a covert 'black bag' operation (a robbery) that went awry—a dark secret that places all the former agents in mortal danger. Fisher nearly loses his life when shot by a gunman on a motorcycle and is last seen in hospital, already plotting revenge against those responsible.
  • Holly Griffin (Storme Toolis) (2013–2014): Dan Griffin's daughter. She is very close to her father, owing to her mother's absence, and often prompts him in the right direction towards solving a case. She is a jazz fanatic and a bright student studying law at university. She leaves home during Series 10, her absence causing problems for Dan's personal life. Unlike her father, Holly has no contact with her mother at the mental hospital, since her delusions caused her to try and drown Holly when she was 13. Although no one ever thought her mother had any idea what she was doing when she attacked, Dan implies that the incident left Holly unable to ever trust her mother again.
  • Deputy Assistant Commissioner Ned Hancock (Barnaby Kay) (2013–2014): The ex-husband of Sasha Miller, he and his wife were initially viewed as the golden high-flying couple of the police force until she divorced him owing to his infidelity. Despite this, he still harbours feelings for his ex-wife and does make attempts to win her back in the eleventh series.
  • Fiona Kennedy (Tracy-Ann Oberman) (2014–2015): Fiona first arrived as a pathologist and love interest for Danny Griffin. Fiona is a smart, independent and feisty woman. She is great at her job, highly respected in her field and brings a positive balance to the dark nature of her work with her sharp wit and open, friendly personality. She also becomes partner to Danny Griffin, whom she met while they were investigating the death of a personal trainer together. Now, a loving and stable couple, they support one another through the various trials of their jobs and Danny’s somewhat complex family life.

Change in cast[]

In 2011, James Bolam announced to the producers that he would be leaving the show; he was replaced by Denis Lawson. In 2012, both Alun Armstrong and Amanda Redman announced to the producers that they would be leaving the show; they were replaced by Nicholas Lyndhurst and Tamzin Outhwaite respectively. In September 2014, Dennis Waterman announced that he would be leaving the show after filming two episodes of the next series; Larry Lamb replaced him for the rest of the final series.


Character Actor Years Series Episode Count
Brian Lane Alun Armstrong 2003–2013 1.1–10.4 80
Jack Halford James Bolam 2003–2012, 2013 1.1–9.1, 10.8 67
DSI Sandra Pullman Amanda Redman 2003–2013 1.1–10.8 84
Gerry Standing Dennis Waterman 2003–2015 1.1–12.2 99
Steve McAndrew Denis Lawson 2012–2015 9.4–12.10 31
Dan Griffin Nicholas Lyndhurst 2013–2015 10.5–12.10 20
DCI Sasha Miller Tamzin Outhwaite 2013–2015 10.9–12.10 21
Ted Case Larry Lamb 2015 12.2–12.10 8
Fiona Kennedy Tracy-Ann Oberman 2014–2015 11.6, 12.1–12.10 9
Robert Strickland Anthony Calf 2005–2015 2.1–12.10 62
Character Played by Position Seasons
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
Brian Lane Alun Armstrong Detective Inspector colspan="10" Template:Yes2
Dan Griffin Nicholas Lyndhurst Detective Sergeant colspan="3" Template:Yes2
Jack Halford James Bolam Detective Chief Superintendent colspan="9" Template:Yes2 Guest
Steve McAndrew Denis Lawson Detective Inspector colspan="4" Template:Yes2
Sandra Pullman Amanda Redman Detective Superintendent colspan="10" Template:Yes2
Sasha Miller Tamzin Outhwaite Detective Chief Inspector colspan="3" Template:Yes2
Gerry Standing Dennis Waterman Detective Sergeant colspan="12" Template:Yes2
Ted Case Larry Lamb Detective Chief Inspector colspan="1" Template:Yes2

<templatestyles src="Citation/styles.css"/>^1 A significant supporting character. Deputy Assistant Commissioner Robert (sometimes Bob) Strickland is directly responsible for both the operation and actions of UCOS, but is not involved in most cases. He does, however, engage the team in cases with a political aspect, and sometimes becomes involved in other sensitive cases.


Main article: List of New Tricks episodes



Roy Mitchell, creator of the series, being a supporter of the English football team West Bromwich Albion, named numerous characters after past and then-current players. The original three main male characters derived their names from the club's oldest stand, "The Halfords Lane Stand", at The Hawthorns football ground in West Bromwich.[23]


The theme tune of the program is sung by cast member Dennis Waterman. The song is "It's Alright" (written by Mike Moran). Production music was composed by father and son team Brian and Warren Bennett. The British release of the first season DVD contains a cover version of "End of the Line" sung by Dennis Waterman at the end of the pilot episode.

DVD releases[]

Series one to ten of New Tricks are available on DVD on Region 2 (UK). These titles are distributed by Acorn Media UK.

DVD Title Discs Year Episodes DVD release Notes
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
Complete Series 1 3 20032004 7 25 August 2009 23 May 2005 1 September 2005 Includes 2003 pilot
Complete Series 2 3 2005 8 19 January 2010 24 April 2006 6 July 2006
Complete Series 3 3 2006 8 22 February 2011 14 May 2007 7 November 2007
Complete Series 4 3 2007 8 7 June 2011 1 September 2008 3 April 2008
Complete Series 5 3 2008 8 27 September 2011 24 August 2009 6 August 2009
Complete Series 6 3 2009 8 7 February 2012 11 October 2010 2 December 2010
Complete Series 7 3 2010 10 5 June 2012 1 August 2011 21 April 2011
Complete Series 8 3 2011 10 25 September 2012 21 November 2011 5 July 2012
Complete Series 9 3 2012 10 25 June 2013 5 November 2012
Complete Series 9 Blu-ray 2 2012 10 26 November 2012
Complete Series 10 3 2013 10 7 October 2013[24]
Complete Series 11 3 2014 10 27 October 2014[25]
Complete Series 12 3 2015 10 12 October 2015
Complete Series 14 12 20032007 31 7 November 2008 Includes 2003 pilot
Complete Series 35 9 20052008 24 22 March 2010
Complete Series 36 12 20052009 32 7 March 2011
Complete Series 38 18 20052011 52 18 June 2012
Complete Series 112 36 20032015 107 12 October 2015 Includes 2003 pilot

See also[]

  • The Enigma Files, UK / BBC Two, 1980
  • Cold Squad, CAN / CTV, 1998
  • Cold Case Files, USA / A&E, 1999 (true cases)
  • Waking the Dead, UK / BBC One, 2000
  • Cold Case, USA / CBS, 2003
  • Solved, USA / ID, 2008 (true cases)
  • Zettai Reido, Japan / Fuji Television, 2010
  • Cold Justice, USA / TNT, 2013 (true cases)
  • To Catch a Killer, CAN / OWN, 2014 (true cases)
  • Signal, South Korea / TVN, 2016


  1. Ben Dowell. "BBC axes New Tricks". RadioTimes.
  2. "BBC News – BBC One axes New Tricks detective series". BBC News.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Norton, Jim (24 February 2015). "BBC1 detective show New Tricks is axed after 12 years to 'increase the range of drama on the channel'". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 24 February 2015.
  4. Oatts, Joanne (1 June 2011). "'New Tricks' gets a fifth series". Digital Spy. Retrieved 19 July 2011.
  5. "Weekly Viewing Summary" (Select 27/05/07 from dropdown – BARB Website)
  6. "Weekly Viewing Summary" (Select 24/08/08 from dropdown – BARB Website)
  7. "Sixth run of 'New Tricks' confirmed". Digital Spy.
  8. New Tricks locks down two more series for BBC1 at, a pay-per-view site
  9. "BARB Weekly Top 30 Programmes" (Select week of 4–10 July 2011)
  10. "BARB Weekly Top 30 Programmes" (Select week of 18–24 July 2011)
  11. "BARB Weekly Top 30 Programmes" (Select week of 15 Aug. – 21 Aug. 2011)
  12. "New Tricks commissioned for another two series on BBC One", BBC Press Office, 6 September 2011. Retrieved 2011-09-06.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Eden, Richard. "BBC drama as actor James Bolam tires of New Tricks", The Telegraph, 19 September 2011. Retrieved 2011-09-19.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Glanfield, Tim. "Denis Lawson joins BBC1's New Tricks for series nine", Radio Times, 11 January 2012. Retrieved 2012-01-12.
  15. 15.0 15.1 Anisiobi, J. J. "'I have to try something new': Amanda Redman quits New Tricks but would never join Downton Abbey", The Daily Mail, 18 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-23.
  16. 16.0 16.1 Robertson, Colin. "New Tricks has been dealt another blow after star Alun Armstrong announced he is quitting", The Sun, 23 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-23.
  17. "BARB Weekly Top 30 Programmes" (Select week of 27 Aug. – 2 Sept. 2012)
  18. "Wall to Wall – New Tricks Series 10".
  20. "Nicholas Lyndhurst wraps up warm as he films BBC comedy series New Tricks in London – Daily Mail Online". Mail Online.
  21. "BBC Media Centre Programme Information: New Tricks Series 9, A Death in the Family". Retrieved 17 August 2012.
  22. ICMDB [1], Internet Car Movie Database. Retrieved 2014-12-17.
  23. A fan possessed by Adrian Chiles, 25 July 2007, The Guardian
  24. "Acorn DVD – Home of Brand New Crime Drama, Broadchurch, The Missing, The Fall, Midsomer Murders and Foyle's War on DVD and BluRay: FREE UK DELIVERY,".
  25. "New Tricks – Series 11 on DVD: FREE UK DELIVERY". Archived from the original on 15 September 2014.

External links[]