Martin Shaw really shines as Judge John Deed. This is a more complex character than George Gently, so don't look for moral absolutes. Gently is almost saintly, but Judge Deed is all too human and a charming devil to boot. Like many British series, it's character-driven and the interest is in the sharp dialogue and interactions. For those of you who enjoyed seeing Martin Shaw box in George Gently, you get to see him fence in this series. The fencing metaphor for all the legal/political thrusting and parrying is a nice touch.