It inevitably stimulates thoughts of Big Brother and how we are always being watched by the extensive network of CCTV cameras all over Britain. The show has chosen a long enough time frame, 28 days, to force the fugitives to employ some skill and ingenuity in evading capture. The range of fugitives also promises excitement as they include amputee ex-soldiers, a househusband and a stockbroker’s assistant.
Social media played a scarily large part in the first episode with the hunters scrutinising the Facebook and Twitter accounts of the fugitives. Further reminding the audience how easy it is now to find out ample amounts of information about someone just from the internet. Similarly, with all of their families having to give up their electronic items, much needed intelligence was gained from hacking into their computers and laptops. Even though the ethical hacker of the team did just try the fugitive’s birthday and pets names to easily gain access to ex-solider Jez’s MacBook. This wasn’t the only part of the episode where the secret agent vibe that the show was channeling fell short.
They clearly wish to portray the team of hunters as a group of talented geniuses. However, the conversation between the spotty twenty-something computer geek and investigative psychologist Donna, over whether one of the fugitives is going to ring his son on his first birthday, leaves the audience needing a lot more convincing of their ingenuity.
Unsurprisingly, the show is channelling a dramatic tension, but seems to rely solely on music for this. When househusband Nick almost gets caught in the first ten minutes, we only felt a bit sorry for him. While the show obviously centres on technology and the catching of the fugitives, it doesn’t allow us to become emotionally invested in the characters. When two hunters eventually track down two of the fugitives in a restaurant and almost catch them, as a viewer, I almost didn’t care if they were caught or not. This isn’t helped by the fact that none of these mostly middle class fugitives seemed enthralled with winning the £100,000.
Overall, the idea and advert of Hunted are really the only exciting things about it. But it is probably worth a watch if you’re planning to go on the run for a few weeks.
Image: Channel 4