Her big break comes at the expense of a family tragedy, when a local toddler is kidnapped and murdered, and the prime suspect is a young relative of Paddy's. She is torn because it's a huge scoop, but she can't betray and destroy her family by revealing what she knows, but she inadvertently allows the information to come out and her family shuns her. Still convinced her cousin is innocent, she starts working the case on her own, looking into an old murder that shares close similarities, all the while using her journalist co-worker Heather Allen's (Alana Hood) name, just in case someone checks up on her. As she uncovers more and more evidence, the very real danger inches closer to her. Will she get the chance to write the story that could set her career in motion before the killer sets his sites on her?
The second mystery in the set centers around a series of deaths that could be connected to a volatile local miners' strike. Paddy has finally been given a chance by her brusque Editor-in-Chief Devlin (David Morrissey, The Walking Dead) and she is now a junior reporter working the call car with reporter/office lech McVie (Ford Kiernan). While driving one night, they respond to a police call of a disturbance in a very upscale neighborhood, but the cops tell them everything is alright. Paddy spies a battered woman looking out the window and she and McVie try to get the story, but are turned away by an imposing man who states the famous lawyer who lives there can't hold her liquor and wouldn't want that printed in the paper. The woman, Vhari Burnett, is found brutally murdered the next morning.
Horrified that she and McVie might have missed a chance to prevent the woman's murder, Paddy starts investigating the case and it seems Burnett may have had ties to the N.U.M. and the miner's strike. What's worse, The Daily News has been sold and a she-devil named Maloney (Katherine Kelly) has replaced Devlin as the Editor-in-Chief and she is making big changes. Devlin is still running the newsroom and is trying to save as many jobs as possible, but Maloney and her bosses want the face of the paper to change and this may force Devlin and the others to put away their need to report important news in lieu of exciting and scandalous stories.
As more people connected to Vhari Burnett either die, go missing, or are injured, Paddy starts to realize that the story is much bigger than she realized and could go up the chain through the police ranks and into the very government itself. Will she, Devlin, and McVie be able to expose the corruption while keeping their jobs and their lives? Maloney just might have something to say about it.
The Field of Blood: Set 1 is a good thriller with enjoyable and multi-layered characters. I really liked watching Paddy transform from a tentative, but still ballsy reporter wannabe to a true force to be reckoned with by the end. It's fun to see what Glasgow was like in the early 80's, complete with a banging rock soundtrack that sometimes reminded me of The Clash. The hairstyles, clothes, misogyny, and especially the prolific plumes of cigarette smoke all felt like a very genuine representation of what a teeming newsroom and its denizens might look like during this time period. I typically don't gravitate towards political or news-related drama, but the thriller side to this series intrigued me and I am glad I watched it. Even though the only special feature is a Photo Gallery, if you like a good thriller glazed with the delightful accents of the Scottish, check out The Filed of Blood: Set 1.