Luther (S1 to S5) Series: Polices Evil & Dark World Of Criminals

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Luther polices the evil and dark world of criminals in the metropolitan city of London, UK. It delves deep into the life of edgy but gifted Detective Chief Inspector (DCI) John Luther.

In this show, DCI John often finds himself solving barbarous criminal cases involving a sadistic bunch of murderers. Please note, that this series is about heinous crimes.

Synopsis of the Luther (S1 to S5) Series

It is a psychological crime drama starring Idris Elba as a brilliant but flawed detective.

A brilliant, troubled detective John Luther crosses the line between personal and professional as he investigates the darkest crimes in London. It is a dark psychological crime drama starring Idris Elba as DCI John, a man struggling with his terrible demons, who might be as dangerous as the depraved murderers he hunts.

Poster of the Luther Series

Luther series – poster
ParticularOverall rating
FM’s rating 4.25/5
FM – overall ratings – Luther shows.

Ratings (break-up) of the Luther (S1 to S5) Series

SeasonsEpisodesFM’s ratingRotten Tomatoes ratings
One (S1)64.25/591% Tomatometer
& 91% Audience Score
Two (S2)44.35/5100% Tomatometer
& 92% Audience Score
Three (S3)44.35/588% Tomatometer
& 93% Audience Score
Four (S4)24.10/579% Tomatometer
& 87% Audience Score
Five (S5)44.20/585% Tomatometer
& 74% Audience Score
FM & Rotten Tomatoes ratings – Luther show.

Spoiler Free Brief Review of the Luther Series

The introduction

DCI John, an exceptional detective with a brilliant mind, is constantly grappling with his impulsive emotions as he relentlessly pursues murderers. Haunted by the sinister aspects of human nature, he finds himself engaged in a psychological battle of wits with the killer once their identity is revealed. And this happens across the compelling five seasons.

John Luther = Sherlock Holmes + Columbo

The creator and the writer Neil Cross has disclosed that DCI John Luther is a mixture of two famous detectives – the Sherlock Holmes character created by the Scottish writer Arthur Conan Doyle and the Columbo (1971-2003) TV series character created by Richard Levinson and William Link.

So, DCI John L. has taken the combination of – intelligence and the ability to solve crimes from Sherlock Holmes and the introverted detective formula from Columbo.

And this is a deadly combination by any given standard.

Mind you, DCI John is also blessed with a very high level of tenacity. Besides, he has a sense of personal moral compass to guide his actions. While catching deadly criminals, he often crosses the thin line separating the criminals from copper/police personnel. Thus, the thin line of righteousness separating the police and the criminal gets drawn and redrawn quite frequently in its twenty episodes.

Idris Elba as DCI John is excellent

We believe that Idris has breathed life and style into this on-screen character of DCI John. He owns and portrays the persona of the highly motivated, yet troubled policeman. Despite so many personal setbacks, he carries on hunting the dangerous criminals. We admired the credible acting display put forth by both Idris Elba (as DCI John – the police) and Ruth Wilson (as Alice Morgan – the criminal) in this series. Ruth Wilson has a bewitching presence in it. The fact is that we loved the acting of its entire ensemble cast.

But, sometimes, its violent scenes made us uneasy

We loved this gritty detective series from the contemporary police world, however, we always felt a sense of uneasiness while watching the violent acts of reprehensible crimes committed by the twisted criminals in this gloomy series. Violence has become an inseparable part of both of their lives with tragic consequences for their families and friends. Sometimes, we wonder how people like DCI John maintain sanity amidst so much crime and pain. The resistance of his character is admirable.

The conclusion

This crime series rightly depicts – how the lines of morality between police and criminals often get fuzzy and blurred. So, you all stay safe and don’t forget to watch this engrossing crime drama from the UK. Also, kindly note that this series has leapt into the world of movies, with its first film Luther: The Fallen Sun released this year in 2023, we have shared our review of the same on our Focus Magazine.

Preview Video Clips of the Luther (S1 to S4) Series

2010 (S1 )

Preview Clip (S1, E1)

Luther (S1) – BBC One | YouTube.
2011 (S2)

Preview Clip (S2, E1)

Luther (S2) – BBC One | YouTube.
2013 (S3)

Preview Clip (S3, E1)

Luther (S3) – BBC One | YouTube
2015 (S4)

Preview Clip (S4, E1)

Luther (S4) – BBC One | YouTube.

Spoilers Alerts – episodes summary of this UK crime (2010-2019) show

A peek into the Six (6) Episodes of the First (1st) Season
Psychological crime drama starring Idris Elba as a brilliant but flawed detective.

First (S1, E1) | 52 minutes

DCI John Luther returns to work following the traumatic arrest of a serial killer. Luther investigates the murder of the parents of a former child genius.

Second (S1, E2) | 52 minutes

Luther must outmanoeuvre a trained sniper on a mission to kill police officers. Luther discovers Alice has been investigating him.

Third (S1, E3) | 53 minutes

Luther investigates the abduction of a young mother. When Zoe’s boyfriend is assaulted, he assumes Luther is the one who did it.

Fourth (S1, E4) | 53 minutes

Luther must put his personal life aside and delve inside the mind of a serial killer. Three girls are found murdered, forcing Luther to put his concerns aside.

Fifth (S1, E5) | 53 minutes

When an art dealer’s wife is taken hostage, Luther leads a tense investigation.

Sixth (S1, E6) | 53 minutes

Framed for murder, the only person DCI John Luther can turn to for help is Alice.

Gritty and ambiguous, Luther is a captivating drama bolstered by a powerhouse performance from Idris Elba in the title role.

Rotten Tomatoes | Critics Consensus
A peek into the Four (4) Episodes of the Second (2nd) Season
Psychological crime drama starring Idris Elba as a brilliant but flawed detective.

First (S2, E1) | 53 minutes

Luther returns to work. A failed art student wants to emulate a Victorian killer; he faces a surreal and nightmarish case of a man who murders wearing a Punch mask. He agrees to help a widow.

Second (S2, E2) | 52 minutes

Luther sets out to rescue Ripley after he is abducted by Cameron. He must save Ripley’s life in time to stop Cameron’s final murderous set piece. Jenny’s boss demands compensation.

Third (S2, E3) | 52 minutes

Luther must outmanoeuvre a man whose brutal and escalating murders seem to have no motive. He must investigate seemingly motive-free murders. He is determined to protect Jenny.

Fourth (S2, E4) | 53 minutes

Luther’s life spirals out of control; a killer’s actions are ruled by dice. He has a copycat killer on the loose, a body to hide and a suspicious Baba to appease.

Luther delves into darker territory in its second season, and Idris Elba's outstanding performance make this a police procedural of uncommon weight and heft.

Rotten Tomatoes | Critics Consensus
A peek into the Four (4) Episodes of the Third (3rd) Season
Idris Elba returns as John Luther, the near-genius detective waging his own war on crime.

First (S3, E1) | 51 minutes

Luther investigates a twisted fetishist who is murdering women in a horrific echo of an unsolved case from the 1980s, but Superintendent Stark does not approve of his unorthodox policing. A chance encounter means Luther might be on the verge of finding love.

Second (S3, E2) | 51 minutes

News of a murder interrupts Luther’s date with Mary. Ripley must investigate the Jared Cass murder alone. Luther discovers the fetish killer is re-enacting the past. Can he stop him in time?

Third (S3, E3) | 51 minutes

A vigilante killer is determined to punish past offenders; the campaign pushes Luther to his limits. He pursues a determined vigilante killer.

Fourth (S3, E4) | 51 minutes

Luther finds himself accused of crimes he hasn’t committed. Luther must clear his name after being accused of crimes he didn’t commit while working to stop the vigilante killer.

Idris Elba shines in the title role of Luther despite familiar circumstances that benefit from the shortened season.

Rotten Tomatoes | Critics Consensus
A peek into the Two (2) Episodes of the Fourth (4th) Season
Critically acclaimed dark psychological crime drama starring Idris Elba as DCI Luther.

First (S4, E1) | 52 minutes

Luther takes a leave of absence from the police; when an old colleague brings him a shocking piece of news, he is drawn into investigating the crimes of a gruesome killer. He is pulled back to duty to investigate the crimes of a gruesome killer.

Second (S4, E2) | 52 minutes

On the trail of a horrifying cannibalistic killer, Luther finds himself haunted by ghosts from his past. Can a cold case help?

Idris Elba remains the best thing about Luther in an all-too-brief season which packs a lot of plot into a short time frame.

Rotten Tomatoes | Critics Consensus
A peek into the Four (4) Episodes of the Fifth (5th) Season
Luther and new recruit DS Catherine Halliday investigate crimes and the nature of evil.

First (S5, E1) | 53 minutes

A spate of murders brings Luther to once again face the depths of human depravity on the streets of London. As the body count rises, Luther attempts to catch a killer and save his neck.

Second (S5, E2) | 53 minutes

Luther must confront a demon from his past, as both the police and Cornelius converge on his home. Halliday is convinced that the body in the morgue isn’t their killer. Luther attempts to put his troubles aside and find the true murderer.

Third (S5, E3) | 53 minutes

With his friend in peril and a young woman kidnapped by the relentless serial killer, Can Luther protect the innocent while preventing Cornelius’ revenge from consuming him?

Fourth (S5, E4) | 52 minutes

Reeling from the death of his friend, Luther races to save the others from Cornelius’ terrible retribution. With Luther’s increasing absence from the case, Halliday heads the hunt for a killer on the loose.

Luther returns in fine form from its extended exodus with a grizzly mystery and the welcome reappearance of Ruth Wilson's psychotic villain, Alice Morgan.

Rotten Tomatoes | Critics Consensus

Trailer of the Luther (S5/2019) Series

Official Trailer – Luther – (S5/2019) | YouTube.

Key Details about the Luther Series

GenreCrime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Original languageEnglish (UK)
Creator Neil Cross
ReleasedMay 4, 2010
Age-restrictionsA (18+)
SeasonsFive (5) Seasons
They were aired in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015 & 2019, respectively.
Episodes1st Season – Six (6) Episodes
2nd Season – Four (4) Episodes
3rd Season – Four (4) Episodes
4th Season – Two (2) Episodes
5th Season – Four (4) Episodes
CastIdris Elba (DCI John Luther), Ruth Wilson (Alice Morgan), Dermot Crowley (DSU Martin Schenk), Michael Smiley (DS Benny Silver), Warren Brown
(Justin Ripley), Darren Boyd (DCI Theo Bloom), Rose Leslie (DS Emma Lane), Indira Varma (Zoe Luther), Paul McGann (Mark North), Saskia Reeves (Rose Teller), Laura Haddock (Megan Cantor), Steven Mackintosh (Ian Reed), Nikki Amuka-Bird (DCI Erin Gray), etc.
TaglinesWhat if you were on the Devil’s side without knowing it?
About – Luther Series.


Luther - this UK series has been adapted and remade into an Indian series 'Rudra - The Edge of Darkness' in India. 

Luther was also adapted into a French series with the same name.

Awards won by of this UK crime (2010-2019) show

Names of the AwardsNames of the Awards Winners
Crime Thriller Awards, UK 2011Idris Elba – Best Leading Actor –
BET Awards 2011Best Actor – Idris Elba
Golden Globes, USA 2012Idris Elba – Best Performance by an Actor in a Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television
Black Reel Awards 2012Outstanding Television or Mini-Series Performance, Male – Idris Elba
Royal Television Society, UK 2012 Winner RTS Television Award – Drama Series – Neil Cross (creator/writer) & Katie Swinden (producer)
Awards Circuit Community Awards 2012ACCA TV – Best TV Movie or Mini-Series
Royal Television Society, UK 2014Winner RTS Television Award – Actor – Male – Idris Elba
Screen Actors Guild Awards 2016Idris Elba – Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries
Critics Choice Television Awards 2016Best Actor in a Movie Made for Television or Limited Series – Idris Elba
Awards – Luther Series

Featured & Other Images: Luther Series | BBC.

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