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Viewers call for ITV's The Long Shadow to receive all the awards for its focus on victims

Ella Scott

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| Last updated 

Viewers call for ITV's The Long Shadow to receive all the awards for its focus on victims

Featured Image Credit: ITV

Fans of new ITV series The Long Shadow are praising producers for telling the victim’s stories rather than ‘glamorising’ the murderer.

Last week, the first episode of Lewis Arnold’s true crime series - starring Toby Jones, Chloe Harris and Katherine Kelly - debuted on ITV1.

The show itself details the five-year manhunt for notorious serial killer Peter Sutcliffe, better known as The Yorkshire Ripper, and focuses on the victims of the lorry drivers’ heinous crimes.

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Between the years of 1975 to 1980, the Bingley-born man murdered 13 women and attempted to murder seven others.

In 1981, he was sentenced to 20 consecutive sentences of life imprisonment, which was changed to a whole life order in 2010.

The killer died at the age of 74 in November 2020.

While the subject of the ITV show is devastating, director Arnold told LADbible that he and the crew were conscious of telling the narrative in an ‘authentic’ and ‘truthful manner’.

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He said: “The only people who know what happened on those nights and those events are, unfortunately, the victims and the person responsible.

All episodes of The Long Shadow are available to watch on ITVX. Credit: ITV
All episodes of The Long Shadow are available to watch on ITVX. Credit: ITV

"And it would just be wrong to go there and would do a disservice to the people who live through it.

"So it's about trying to find a way to tell these stories that feels authentic and truthful but also respectful.”

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Since the first episode aired on Monday, 25 September, fans have taken to social media to praise Arnold and his team for shifting their lens to focus on the victims and the detectives who were hunting Sutcliffe.

One X user wrote: “Currently watching Katherine in The Long Shadow which is a horrific drama because it’s a true story but good to see focusing on the victims as opposed to glamorising the killer.”

Viewers have taken to social media to praise the team behind The Long Shadow. Credit: X
Viewers have taken to social media to praise the team behind The Long Shadow. Credit: X
Another social media praised Katherine Kelly's performance. Credit: X
Another social media praised Katherine Kelly's performance. Credit: X
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“Watching The Long Shadow on ITV. Not sure about certain aspects of it but it’s good to see a drama about Peter Sutcliffe’s murders that focuses almost entirely on the women he killed rather than the pathetic little p**** himself. Shouldn’t feel as timely as it does,” posted a second.

And another said: “The Long Shadow. A compelling and poignant drama, focusing on the victims of Peter Sutcliffe. Written by #GeorgeKay. Exquisitely directed by @LewisAEA.

“Sensitively handled by the team at @NewPicturesLtd. Catch up on @ITV @ITVX. Thanks to the real Neil Jackson for his blessing.”

One X user said the TV show was 'sensitively handled'. Credit: X
One X user said the TV show was 'sensitively handled'. Credit: X
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As well as a riveting true crime storyline, The Long Shadow boasts an all-star cast.

Jones plays DCS Dennis Hoban, who led the inquiry into the murders, while Jasmine Lee-Jones portrays Marcella Claxton, a survivor of Sutcliffe’s attacks.

Elsewhere, David Morrissey, Stephen Tompkinson, Jack Dream and Ruth Madeley also star.

The second episode of the seven-part drama is due to air on Monday, 2 October. However, all episodes of the mini-series have since been released early on ITVX.

Topics: ITV, TV And Film, Social media, Entertainment

Ella Scott
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