Nothing says adventure, romance and intrigue quite like jury duty, or at least that's the hopeful attitude of a dozen down-on-their-luck Londoners who seem delighted to find themselves on a high-profile murder case in PBS' "Masterpiece Theatre" miniseries "The Jury."
The six-hour drama, starring Derek Jacobi and Antony Sher as bewigged barristers on opposite sides of the aisle, begins Sunday at 9 on KCET and KVCR, followed by another two-hour block on April 13, a 60-minute episode on April 20, and the hourlong finale April 27.
The case involves the grisly slaying-by-sword of a teenage boy, allegedly by a Sikh schoolmate who had been viciously bullied by the victim for years. The racial implications of a born-and-bred Brit being cut down by an immigrant is a scenario that has polarized the community into rabid factions that go to war each day in front of the historic Old Bailey courthouse, forcing the jurors to run a gantlet through the shouting, placard-wielding scrum.
But the panel members are so beaten down by their private travails that they hardly seem to mind. Among them are a struggling single mom (Nina Sonsanya) angrily at odds with her mother; a lonely beautician (Helen McCrory) stuck in a loveless marriage; a handsome recovering alcoholic fresh out of rehab (Gerard Butler); a would-be priest (Stuart Bunce); and a meek salesman (Michael Maloney) living in dread of his overbearing father-in-law.