Rebus is adapted from the novels of award-winning writer Ian Rankin - the UK's number one best-selling crime writer. At the center of each story is Detective Inspector Rebus, an enigma, fighting his own weaknesses, while d... more »ealing with the sad consequences of human frailty. He's seen it all before, but his cynicism is redeemed by an unexpected humanity that reveals he is more disillusioned with himself than others. As he scours the streets looking for answers, Rebus is actually seeking the truth about himself. Episodes The story of a copycat killer from 15 years ago comes back to haunt Rebus in Black and Blue. He finds himself taken off the case when an official investigation is opened into the death of a convicted murderer, who Rebus helped put behind bars, 15 years ago? True to his nature, Rebus refuses to let the matter lie. He soon finds himself in pursuit of two killers, past and present. The Hanging Garden follows Rebus as he pieces together the trail of a war criminal who appears to have gone into hiding in a respectable part of town. After rescuing a young Chechen girl from a local gangster he is drawn into a vicious running battle between rival gangs. But when his daughter Sammy is deliberately run down in the street, it soon becomes plain he will stop at nothing to find the man responsible. Rebus and his colleague catch sight of a known convicted pedophile taking photographs at the zoo in Dead Souls. It transpires he has been released early from prison, is under police protection and is the key witness in the trial of two suspected abusers. The next day, Rebus' colleague is found dead in the center of Edinburgh in what appears to be suicide. Devastated, Rebus sets out to discover what exactly happened. And in Mortal Causes, the case of an underworld execution unfolds as Rebus makes a link with racist attacks that raises the chilling specter of terrorism on the streets of Edinburgh.« less
"With wonderfully complex plots and recurring characters, Rebus is an absolutely first-rate crime drama based on the novels by Scottish author Iain Rankin. Though set in Edinburgh, it is not the charming, picturesque, historic old city as seen by the casual visitor that we are privy to; rather, the viewer is taken on a journey through the dark, gritty, cankerous underbelly of what, on the surface, is one of Britain's loveliest old cities. This is a series peopled by characters who are all too human, and it holds back no punches in its realistic portrayal of the criminal world.
Detective Inspector John Rebus (John Hannah (McCallum)) is one of the most curious, indeed fascinating, DIs I've come across. He's a competent and committed police officer, but a flawed human being with his own set of personal demons with which he must contend. He's a deep, multi-faceted character for whom nothing is black and white, and he's not immune to making serious errors in judgement, to lying in order to achieve his objective, or to experiencing the temptation of a "pact with the devil." He often makes decisions which shock the viewer, for we know that, even though we may understand his motivation, they are decisions which would never be condoned by the police. Indeed, is it any wonder he drinks a little too much and has more than a little trouble sleeping? Nor are we surprised to find that he has more than a little trouble forming and holding on to relationships with women.
Rebus is a wonderfully rich, dynamic, and interesting character, and I personally felt that John Hannah did a superb job in bringing him to life. I don't know why Hannah left the series or if he did any more series after this one, but I do know that I prefer these episodes and Hannah's portrayal much more than the recent pair of episodes wherein Ken Stott has taken over the title role (I just didn't warm to the character as portrayed by Stott).
The set consists of four 100-minute episodes and a very interesting dvd extra on the making of the series, which features informative comments about the nature of the series and the character of Rebus by both John Hannah and Iain Rankin.
In conclusion, this is a series I recommend unhesitatingly to fans of British mysteries and crime drama in general. There may be less in the way of comic relief, but I would still say that if you enjoy shows like A Touch of Frost or Delziel and Pascoe, chances are you'll really enjoy this one.
Highly recommended! "
Rebus from book to film
M. Bryce | Suffolk, VA USA | 02/15/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was thrilled to see John Hannah as Rebus on BBCAmerica after reading all the books in the series. So I was glad to see the four episodes finally available on DVD. The next two episodes were done by another actor, Ken Stott, but John Hannah will always be Rebus to me."
Rebus on screen
ESD | USA | 08/14/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Loving the character and the writing style, I read every available Rankin Rebus novel-- checking out screenplay was inevitable. At first expecting to meet the buffoonish brother-in-law co-star from the Mummy, I was delighted to meet Rankin's John Rebus, AKA John Hannah. If you like the Rebus novels, then you'll enjoy these Rebus movies. One caveat: if you're new to Rebus, you might wish first to read the novel upon which the screenplay is based, avoiding potential confusion created by the quick pace, Rankin's complex plots, or the Scottish accents. Enjoy!"
Barbara Franke | Murrysville, PA USA | 03/09/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"There is nothing like a good British mystery. The Rebus series of mysteries is full of twists and surprises. Rebus is very believable and homespun and quirky. Great watching for a cold evening."
R. T. Lawrence | Long Island NY USA | 08/28/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Great introduction to Ian Rankins character brought to life. For many people who have a problem with British accents this may be in places had to decipher but once you get into the cadence (rhythm) of the speach it flows quickly. Many will remember the lead actor as the smart mouth side kick from The Mummy, but this was his second BBC scotland show. the first was Maccallum. Both I think are highly rated!"