Time for an Analysis of a Scene featuring one of our favourite Malahide characters, D.I. Brennan from the 2004 miniseries, “Amnesia“. In this scene, D.C. Ian Reid (Brendan Coyle) has begun to suspect his partner, D.S. Mackenzie Stone (John Hannah), of having something to do with the disappearance of his (Stone’s) wife, Lucia (Beatriz Batarda). Stone’s memories of the day are muddled, but he believes that a mysterious amnesiac, John Dean (Anthony Calf), may have been responsible for Lucia’s disappearance, although his confidence is being steadily undermined by the receipt of anonymous notes accusing him of doing it. However, Reid is convinced Stone is sending the notes to himself to throw off suspicion, and he further believes Stone might’ve killed Lucia because he found out she was having an affair – and as it turns out, the affair was with him, which impresses Brennan not at all. As the scene opens, Brennan has had a chance to sleep on Reid’s theories and come to some conclusions himself.
[Brennan swipes himself into his office with his I.D. card]
Brennan [peremptorily]: Reid…
Reid: Morning, boss.
[Brennan hangs up his jacket.]
RF: I love Brennan’s peremptory manner. You just know already that it bodes no good for Reid. I also like the way he very tidily hangs up his jacket. This is a man who pays attention to details.
Admin: “Door” — I’m pretty certain that is code for “you are in such hot water.” Brennan’s manner is incredibly focused and determined. His expression shows that he is steeling himself for a discussion that will leave him demoralized no matter how it goes.
Reid: I didn’t sleep a wink last night.
Brennan [incredulously]: Really? Well, frankly, I don’t know how you slept for the past, uh… sorry, how long was it you were screwing your best mate’s missus? [Paces around Reid] So, she, um… obviously hasn’t made any contact with you, has she, otherwise you wouldn’t be standing there accusing him [Stone] of killing her.
RF: Reid comes into the discussion expecting Brennan to be on his side, judging by his ever-so-slight swagger, but he’s soon disabused of that notion. Evidently Brennan believes in a code of conduct that includes the tenet, “Don’t have an affair with your best mate’s wife”, and he’s none too impressed with Reid for having violated it. I like the way he paces around Reid in a display of leashed intensity, while continuing to direct a hard, unblinking glare his way – it’s a calculated bit of dominance and psychological pressure that sets Reid back on his heels. For his part, Reid now looks rather glum.
Admin: Yeah, I think Reid thought they were going to have some shared commiseration over lack of sleep, but there was none to be had. Brennan’s pacing demonstrates a lot of pent up energy which shows how heavily this has weighed on his conscience. His disgust with Reid is palpable.