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4.6 out of 5 stars68
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 22 July 2010
I have yet to see the DVD of the series, but both my wife and watched it avidly when it was shown on TV. We very much enjoyed the first series (and bought it on DVD when it came out) and this second series did not disappoint!

The acting is excellent, and the plotting is tight, complex and engrossing. Watching the decent of Josephine Carlson (defence lawyer)into corruption is in many ways sad, as she seemed basically decent in the first series, but her desperation for money in many ways makes it a little inevitable!

Very highly recommended, and we can't wait for a (hopefully) third series! Very much carries the flag for more European crime dramas to be shown on British TV. It also shows that having subtitles (rather than dubbing) is not only not a barrier to the show, but helps to get the "flavour" of the characters much better than dubbing ever could. More please!
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on 12 August 2010
As a lover of good cop shows my viewing as been a little flat since the ending of The Wire and The Shield. Fear not however the second series of the French TV cop show Spiral has filled the void nicely. Whilst not up to the standard of the Wire, but then what is? Spiral 2 is as good if not better that the Shield and way ahead of both Law and Order and CSI (Yawn)and better that Spiral 1.
As an Anglo/Saxon I am not sure I always understood the workings of the French lagal system and the relationship between the police and the examining magistrates, who are confusingly called judges but are more like an American DA . However I cannot say that this stopped my enjoyment of this excelent series. In a nutshell a group of French police investigate the burning alive of a drug dealer and this leads them to uncover a large drug ring. Throw a couple of corrupt lawyers and we have an excelent example of the genre.
As an aside, do not expect French elegence. These flics must be the scruffest coppers on British, US or French TV.
Hope season 3 is a good.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 7 March 2011
The second series of this fast-moving, dramatic Parisian police thriller with its complex "cogs spinning cogs" plot seems to me to be superior to the first, since the main plotline is more substantial, there are fewer distracting "side stories" and the end is more conclusive and less of a "damp squib".

This is very well acted, down to the smallest gesture or passing expression. The actors all seem to have distinctive faces to match them to their parts: the dedicated but often impulsive and reckless Capitaine Laure Berthaud, the suave Vice-Procurator Pierre Clement, the wily Judge Roban, the beautiful lawyer Josephine, who sells her soul for money to the corrupt senior advocate Szabo, and so on. The characters are very well-developed and convincing in their complex behaviour - the criminals often have redeeming features, while those trying to track them down are prey to ambition, hypocrisy, greed, bias or lack of self control - in short, human nature warts and all.

Although the storyline, based on drug dealing in the tight-knit Arab community, is often sordid and I hope the police methods of investigation are exaggerated, every episode is always compulsive watching throughout. The details of the French legal system are a bit hard to follow, but you can grasp the general idea. You also get a good insight into life in some of the immigrant communities in Paris.

I watched a version with French sub-titles which is good practice for an English speaker but hard going. I have certainly learned a good deal of slang I can never use on holiday in France! Since then I have watched a 2 DVD version with English subtitles - also good. but you have to read fast!
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on 27 June 2014
I'm working my way through Season 2 now, and really enjoying it, but......it's not as 'gripping' as Season 1 so far (Episode 4).......The characters remain terrific!
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on 13 January 2012
What a ride this second series was. Having received the 3 season box set I have now finished watching the 2nd one straight after viewing the first, in less than a week.
This French series is so relentlessly paced, the tension between the undercover investigation is hard to bear, the sublime acting given by all the "shady characters/dealers" is spot on. ("Larbi Moustafa" is also in the excellent film "PARIS LOCKDOWN", drug crime drama in Paris, shown on sky tv recently, I recommend)

I am French and it is a fact that France has changed a lot since the 1960's just like London is much more multinational, so is Paris and all French cities.
If you have seen La Haine, "Paris Lockdown", or "Tell No One", you will be very familiar by the guetto aspect of France and Spiral here takes you right into it.
The Climax is very hard to watch as anthting could happen! You will not be disappointed.
Except for Capitaine Bertaud's wrong new shorter haircut, this series is even better than the first, I absolutely love all the (new) characters, even the cold hearted Rousse bombshell:)

I am now near the end of series 3, which is for once 4 episodes longer, and it is also excellent, serial killer based.
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on 5 July 2011
If you really want to enjoy Spiral: Season 2, do not read any more reviews. Just watch this masterpiece of gripping crime drama. These 8 episodes will have you absorbed in a world of French police and the corrupt legal system. What gives an edge are the authentic characters who you do end up caring.

However, Season 2 DVD of Spiral has the same problem as its predecessor. There are no DVD extras. No documentaries that could have enlightened the British audience who might not know so much about the way the French police work. What I found frustrating is the small fonts in which the subtitles appear. However, this is not the fault of the TV drama. In future, one hopes that those who are in the business of making DVDs of foreign language TV series for the British audience should put some time making the product worthy of its price.

Despite all these problems, this DVD is worth buying, especially if you are one of those who can appreciate a social realist TV crime drama with plenty of believable twists.
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on 6 January 2015
Français-noir! Gripping proof that you do not have to be Danish to devise clever plots and compelling heroes and heroines. Deserving of its adult rating, this is a tale not for the squeamish but one that, like its northern neighbours, is compelling viewing with a cast of characters that are truly memorable, particularly the female lead Caroline Proust.
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on 13 April 2015
I am viewing this series a long time after it was made. It knocks the spots of any Brit cop show for its social realism and its ambition as a TV show. Despite BBC4 involvement, there is apparently no one in Brit TV land with the guts to make something similar over here. So enjoy the reruns of Lewis everyone.
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on 17 May 2015
We were late comers to Spiral. We never watched it on TV but it was highly recommended by several of our friends so we thought we would give it a try. It is an excellent programme with good plots and superb acting. We have now seen Series 1 + 2 and cannot wait for the rest.
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on 14 September 2010
The 2nd season is even better than the first, though both are great TV. It's a French combination of Prime Suspect and the Wire. Highly recommended for anyone who enjoys crime/police dramas.
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