Though always equipped with engrossing (true) stories (ripped straight from the first couple of pages of the daily newspapers), the “Underbelly” series does dip bottom-ways, creatively speaking, here and there – particular in the last couple of years.
But when all the fuses are fitted correctly, the series fires on all cylinders.
The very first season of the show is undoubtedly the high point of the brand, what with its performances and writing near matching the superlative job of the publicity department that worked on the controversial venture. This latest chapter, which comes on the heels of a couple of weaker installments in the long-running crime brand, isn’t a return to form .. But it’s definitely a step back in the right direction.
“Underbelly Badness” tells, over eight episodes, of the criminal adventures of drug-dealer Anthony “Rooster” Perish (an excellent Jonathan LaPaglia) and how the drug-dealer-murderer-kidnapper- evaded authorities for nearly a decade before finally being snatched by task force Tuno leader Det. Insp. Gary Jubelin (Matt Nable).
With only a few dud episodes in tow, and only a couple of nagging beefs with the direction and editing (cut back on the slow-mo, please!), “Badness” is, on the whole, successful in relating the true-life yarn of Aussie scumbag ‘Badness’ to the screen.