The fourth series begins in strong style. Perhaps symbolic of a big push Roger Marshall returned to write this opener (and indeed the whole of this series) while the most regular director Kim Mills joined him, just as they worked together on the opening episodes.
There is a unique and memorable opening sequence. It shows Marker's prison records and photographs and plays without music. Focus then switches to him in his prison bed, staring into space, re-living the words of the judge as he was sentenced. It's a very powerful opening, highlighting his solitary existence.
Frank is just about to be released, having spent the latter part of his sentence at Ford Open Prison in Sussex after starting in the much tougher Winson Green in Birmingham. His exchanges with prisoners such as Jakeman make clear his lack of interest in interacting and his determination to keep his personality a closed book. The only thing he makes clear is that he will be "straight". The cynical Jakeman explains it won't be so easy. "You've crossed the line...You're not one of them anymore, you're one of us." These words come back into his mind repeatedly.
Cast: Alfred Burke (Frank Marker); Pauline Delany (Mrs. Mortimer); John Grieve (Jim Hull); George Sewell (Jakeman); Anne Ridler (Freda Jakeman); Martin Dempsey (Governor); Heather Canning (Grace); Michael Graham-Cox (Ashman); Gilly McIver (Waitress); John Bindon (Young Builder); Barbara New (Sweeping Woman).