Having built his reputation on good detective work, combined with his unique approaches, Burnside is back on familiar form heading a crack unit in the National Crime Squad, Britain's equivalent of the FBI.






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Complete series cast summary:
Christopher Ellison ...  Frank Burnside 6 episodes, 2000
Zoë Eeles ...  Det. Const. Sam Phillips 6 episodes, 2000
Justin Pierre Justin Pierre ...  Det. Sgt. Dave Summers 6 episodes, 2000
Andrew Readman ...  Supt. Brian Lee 6 episodes, 2000
Paul Gilmore Paul Gilmore ...  Chris Gibson 6 episodes, 2000
John White John White ...  Detective Constable Pete Moss 6 episodes, 2000
Shane Richie ...  Tony Shotton 4 episodes, 2000
Tony Selby Tony Selby ...  Jim Summers 4 episodes, 2000
Paul Nicholas ...  Ronnie Buchan 4 episodes, 2000
Charles Dale Charles Dale ...  Billy Holden 2 episodes, 2000
Roderic Culver Roderic Culver ...  John Renfrew 2 episodes, 2000
Sean Gleeson Sean Gleeson ...  Mark Evans 2 episodes, 2000
Mark Letheren Mark Letheren ...  Jerry Forbes 2 episodes, 2000
Kate Gartside ...  Dr. Anna Grantham 2 episodes, 2000
Cristian Solimeno ...  Dale Vickers 2 episodes, 2000
Ricky Groves Ricky Groves ...  Stu 2 episodes, 2000
Virginia Fiol Virginia Fiol ...  Angie Shotton 2 episodes, 2000
Murray McArthur ...  DC McVeagh 2 episodes, 2000
Dennis Banks ...  DI Dent 2 episodes, 2000
Susie Baxter Susie Baxter ...  Mrs. Philips 2 episodes, 2000
Andrew French Andrew French ...  Jules 2 episodes, 2000
Ishia Bennison Ishia Bennison ...  Cath Foxton 2 episodes, 2000
Sharlene Whyte ...  Donna 2 episodes, 2000
Michael Tucek Michael Tucek ...  Ben Renfrew 2 episodes, 2000
Carsten Voigt Carsten Voigt ...  Kurt 2 episodes, 2000
Ashlie Walker Ashlie Walker ...  School Friend 2 episodes, 2000
Reinhard Michaels Reinhard Michaels ...  Heinrich 2 episodes, 2000
Michelle Ryan ...  School Friend 2 episodes, 2000
Alistair Stewart Alistair Stewart ...  Burger Bar Manager 2 episodes, 2000
Huss Garbiya Huss Garbiya ...  Slick 2 episodes, 2000
Daniella Isaacs Daniella Isaacs ...  Maddy 2 episodes, 2000
James Lee James Lee ...  Micky 2 episodes, 2000


Having built his reputation on good detective work, combined with his unique approaches, Burnside is back on familiar form heading a crack unit in the National Crime Squad, Britain's equivalent of the FBI.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama







Release Date:

7 July 2000 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Inspectorul Burnside See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Thames Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(6 episodes)


See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Dealer: Where's your warrent?
Burnside: In the post.
See more »


Spun-off from The Bill (1984) See more »

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User Reviews

Wasted Opportunity
8 July 2001 | by geoff-71See all my reviews

"Burnside" is a spin-off from famous and long-running U.K. police drama "The Bill", made by the same company and starring possibly that show's most popular character, DCI Frank Burnside (Chris Ellison).

There the similarities end.

Part of The Bill's longevity has been its quality scriptwriting, standout acting and fly-on-the-wall documentary style photography, even lacking a music soundtrack. You believe you are there.

"Burnside" introduces a hip new style, cool soundtrack, sassy characters and gritty plots. Unfortunately it also introduces odd dialogue, stereotypically non-stereotypical police officers (more like NYPD Blue) and stretched-out, convoluted plots.

The premise that Frank has moved up to the National Crime Squad (cf FBI) is a good one, but his team (DC Sam Philips and DS Dave Summers) are a waste of space. They don't do anything. How did they manage to get promoted up to that level? Sam spends most of her time talking dirty - maybe the character is trying to assert herself in a male world - or maybe it's just moronic scriptwriting. And her mother is an alcoholic? Oooh, gritty. And I'm sure there must be millions of gay, black detectives in the police.

Burnside as DCI spends a lot of time asking his junior officers what is going on, obviously a device to inform the audience but it makes Frank seem like he isn't doing anything. In the second story (episode 3), he bizarrely dismisses Sam's idea that the photographer is the culprit and then changes his mind, making most of the episode a waste of time. He whines about having "facts" although there weren't many "facts" against the other suspect, either. And Frank was never much of a "facts" man, anyway.

Why it takes the three of them to solve the crimes they do is a mystery. Reg Hollis could sort them out on his own, between tending Sun Hill's garden to building his model trains.

Putting Frank Burnside into his own show was an excellent idea but it still needs "Bill"-like scripts and production values. As it is, they seem to have inserted a character called Burnside played by the same guy into a fairly generic, unextraordinary police drama. It's actually a testament to Chris Ellison and the wonderful character he has given life to that this show is worth watching; because despite everything it doesn't occur to you that he's an actor playing a role: Burnside lives and breathes and every nuance conveys volumes.

Burnside is still one of the great dramatic characters, but "Burnside" could have been so much more.

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