Picks and Pans Review: Prime Suspect: the Lost Child

updated 10/23/1995 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 10/23/1995 AT 01:00 AM EDT

PBS (Sun., Oct. 22, 9 p.m. ET)

A

Helen Mirren returns for her fourth case as newly promoted Detective Superintendent Jane Tennison. When a single mother is bludgeoned and her infant abducted, Tennison and the London detective squad she oversees spring into overdrive. For Tennison, the case has special poignancy because she has just had an abortion. And now, as the hunt for the missing toddler intensifies, a ravenous mob of Fleet Street reporters is demanding answers. As always, Mirren gives an engrossing, utterly convincing performance as Tennison. Also excellent is Stuart Wilson as a supercilious consulting psychiatrist who specializes in pedophiles.

While previous Prime Suspects have run as miniseries under the Mystery! umbrella, this one and two other new Tennison cases (Feb. 11 and April 28) will air as self-contained movies on Masterpiece Theatre this season. The condensed format only enhances this crackling procedural's intense atmosphere.

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