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Silent Witness viewers saying same thing as show returns with series 27 debut

Emilia Fox and David Caves were joined by a major guest star

John Hannah and Emilia Fox in Silent Witness © BBC Studios/Gary Moyes
Nicky Morris
TV and film writer
January 9, 2024
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Silent Witness returned to BBC One on Monday night with its highly-anticipated series 27 debut – and fans are all saying the same thing about it. The long-running crime drama stars Emilia Fox and David Caves as forensic pathology experts Dr Nikki Alexander and Jack Hodgson, who delve into chilling investigations at The Lyell Centre.

The series opener, titled 'Effective Range, saw Nikki and Jack tasked with investigating a murder that has all the hallmarks of crimes committed by a notorious serial killer between 2003 and 2004. 

WATCH: Emilia Fox and David Caves are back in Silent Witness series 27

Four Weddings and a Funeral star John Hannah guest stars in the series as retired pathologist Charles Beck, whose wife was the killer's suspected fifth victim. 

Taking to social media, viewers praised the compelling plot, which runs across two episodes. One person penned: "Still awake thinking about how amazing the 1st ep of #silentwitness S27 was and what is to come for the rest of this series. My mind can't switch off. Such a gripping storyline and fabulous performances from all. Wonderful, sweet Jakki moments woven into the crime story too."

Alastair Michael, David Caves and Emilia Fox in Silent Witness© BBC Studios/Gary Moyes
Alastair Michael, David Caves and Emilia Fox star in the new series

A second person penned: "Great opener for S27 #SilentWitness, so many twists and turns esp in the 2nd episode. Return to form @bbcstudios @BBCOne."

Many also praised John Hannah's heartbreaking performance as Charles Beck. One person wrote: "Brilliant episode tonight, well done all of you John H is brilliant in everything, a fabulous actor. Guilty of watching episode 2 on BBC iPlayer, couldn't wait! Episode 2 was even more fabulous! So happy #SilentWitness is back," while another added: "John Hannah is SO good."

Meanwhile, other fans were delighted to see that Nikki and Jack had moved in together in the new episode. 

John Hannah as Charles Beck in Silent Witness© BBC Studios/Gary Moyes
John Hannah guest stars as Charles Beck in the new episodes

"Jack and Nikki are 100% living together right? I feel I need confirmation," wrote one person, while another fan added: "Yeah they are living together, thank you very much I can now sob even more."

Viewers have been hugely invested in the couple's romance over the years. The pair first confessed their feelings for one another at the end of series 24 and are still going strong when we meet them again in the new season. 

MORE: Silent Witness: why did these former stars leave the show?

Chatting with HELLO! and other journalists about Nikki and Jack's romance, Emilia and David revealed how they didn't want the show to become "too relationship-orientated". 

David Caves and Emilia fox in Silent Witness© BBC
Fans are invested in Nikki and Jack's romance

"I think because they are together now, we've been trying to work out how to have them in a relationship and have them working together," said Emilia. "We didn't want to have a break-up, conflict thing. 

"We wanted to do it differently to other dramas that would make them combust, we wanted the pressure to bring them closer and closer. That was a really thought-through thing but without overwhelming what Silent Witness is about because we didn't want it to become too relationship-orientated but to be able to bring some light into what is quite a dark and heavy world."

Emilia Fox and David Caves in Silent Witness© BBC Studios/Robert Wilson
Nikki and Jack have moved in together in the new series

David added: "Even in the most intense, high-stakes situations, there has to be a bit of relief and letting the valve go. It's constant push and pull."

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