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    Rebus episode 1 recap: can Rebus trust anyone?

    By David Hollingsworth,


    First John Hannah played him, then Ken Stott, now Richard Rankin is taking on Ian Rankin's most famous creation, John Rebus. But the twist is the cop is a younger man, whose life is in turmoil. Here we recap the opening episode of Rebus, which gives us a first look at the latest version.

    We find our man looking suitably brooding and smoking. He's at the scene of a car crash, where a chief inspector called George is badly injured. "Two police officers injured, one critical, one walking wounded," someone radios over. We then see that Rebus is the walking wounded.

    "Is Cafferty in there?" Rebus asks about an ambulance. When he gets an affirmative, he tells the cop to "get lost". He climbs into the ambulance to join Cafferty. "I didn’t know you were in the car," says Cafferty before Rebus gives him a sharp kick. "You rammed us off the f***** road,” he screams. Cafferty replies: "No one robs me and walks away". Rebus, confused by Cafferty's response, then beats the crook up so badly he's on the verge of killing him before the ambulance door opens.

    We join Rebus a year later. He knocks at his ex-wife's house and comments about her posh car. He collects his daughter and takes her to the home of his brother, Michael. When Michael taunts Rebus about the collapse of his marriage, Rebus thumps him much to the horror of his daughter.

    Rebus with his brother Michael (Image credit: BBC)

    Crime connections

    Rebus heads to a crime scene, where the victim Jimmy McJaggger — great name! — has been stabbed. He was on a bus back to jail when he was attacked by two men dressed as joggers. Rebus learns Jagger is alive and has connections to Cafferty.

    Rebus is introduced to Siobhan Clarke, fresh from a detective course. When asked to show her the ropes, Rebus quips: "There's no ropes, they went out with the last budget cut".

    Rebus and Siobhan check out CCTV footage of the attack. They walk to the car, brushing past someone from professional standards. They head to the hospital, where they tease Jagger about his name, but get nothing useful.

    Rebus and Siobhan grab a coffee, where Rebus reveals his opinion of cyclists and talks about his army past and that of his brother.

    Rebus with DC Siobhan Clarke (Image credit: BBC)

    Rebus and his secret lover

    Michael is delivering parcels. In an interesting twist, we see Siobhan meeting the man from professional standards (very Line of Duty !).

    Rebus visits George, the cop injured in the car crash at the start of the episode. He's now paralyzed.  Rebus shows George his phone and says it’s a message from Cafferty. Rebus knows it's from him as he got it the day McJagger was stabbed.

    Siobhan and the man from professional standards go for a drink. Siobhan asks if he's investigated Rebus in the past. The man from professional standards says: "About a year ago, him and George Blantyre were involved in a car accident with a criminal called Ger Cafferty. No one knows what happened, that’s the problem. Everyone involved kept their mouth shut. George was paralyzed and Cafferty got off with reckless driving. George was Rebus's mentor, head of the serious crime squad. Or head of the serious drinking squad as they called it back in the day. There were always these rumors about George swirling. About how close he got to people, but nothing ever got pinned on him."

    Meanwhile, Rebus asks George why Cafferty tried to kill him. George breaks down and says he's ruined everyone's life. George says he thinks his partner Maggie is seeing someone else...

    Maggie knocks at Rebus’s flat and the pair begin to kiss passionately and end up in bed. Rebus declares he can't do this anymore now George knows she's having an affair. Maggie leaves and his phone pings with another message from Cafferty. "Don’t ignore me".

    Rebus walks his daughter to school and discovers his ex-wife is pregnant!

    Michael gets fired from his delivery job, which seems to break him. Rebus heads to the pub where he gets a call from Cafferty demanding a meeting.

    Michael gets out his old army gun and dons a balaclava. He then robs the local drug dealers of their money. They warn him he’s robbing a top gangster and drop his name. Rebus goes to meet Ger and he also gives Rebus the same name. Ger also goads Rebus about George and reveals he knows about Maggie...

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