Created by Daniel Brierley, ‘Trigger Point’ is an action thriller drama series. The story is set in London and centers on Lana Washington (Vicky McClure), a bomb squad police officer with the Metropolitan Police. She finds herself at the forefront of the police investigation following a series explosions that rocked the English capital. Lana is made to search for the perpetrators after Joel Nutkins, her boss and best friend, is killed in the first blast. Moreover, with the discovery of a far-right group’s possible involvement, the situation becomes further volatile due to an upcoming election.
While ‘Trigger Point’ is a gripping ride of action and mystery, it does a great job of placing modern English society under the microscope, examining its social, religious, cultural, and political fault lines. If that has made you wonder whether ‘Trigger Point’ is inspired by actual events, we got you covered.
Is Trigger Point a True Story or a Fiction?
No, ‘Trigger Point’ is not based on a true story, though, as with most other TV shows, there are certain elements of truth embedded into it. Brierley wrote the script. When he first came up with the premise for ‘Trigger Point,’ he was being mentored by ‘Line of Duty’ (which also stars McClure) creator Jed Mercurio under the TV bursary scheme.
Brierley revealed that the idea for ‘Trigger Point’ came to him after watching the BBC documentary ‘The Long Walk’ on YouTube. “… I came across a 1970s BBC documentary called ‘The Long Walk’ about bomb disposal operatives in Northern Ireland, and it was incredible,” he told ITV. “I’ve always been fascinated by the mindset of people approaching danger, the people who run towards the problem rather than run away from it, because that’s counter to all our human instincts. I used to walk in the opposite direction if I saw something that was dangerous on the street. This was because these operatives were trying to suppress something very natural. I thought that was a really fascinating jumping off point for a drama and I wanted to get inside their mindset.”
‘Trigger Point’ is Brierley’s first project as a creator. He was acutely aware of the need to be sensitive and careful when dealing with the complicated subject matter of the show. “Of course, we knew that we were dealing with subjects that are real and raw, and it was important to make sure we gave enough balance and a fair portrayal of all sides,” he stated. “The series is set in London during a terrorist campaign and a hotly contested election, so we really had to make sure it felt real while also being sensitive. There was a duty to be honest and to show things how they really are.”
Brierley added, “I’ve been in London for 20 years now and I remember 7/7, London Bridge and Parson’s Green, so you tap into those tensions, the memories of the first time getting back on the tube, or seeing the 38 bus in pieces. There’s so many things happening around the world all the time and for writers we have to tap into it.”
McClure explained how bomb-squad officers assisted the cast and crew, while acknowledging that some issues were handled creatively. “There were things that felt like absolute madness, like taking my helmet off as I approach the bomb, but then they explained to me that it could impair your vision, or it could knock the device if it slipped, all these logical things, so you need to take it off to actually work properly around the device. I was learning a lot,” she said.
Mercurio serves as an executive producer on ‘Trigger Point.’ He explained that it was a conscious decision to have a female lead despite bomb disposal being a predominantly male-dominated sector of law enforcement. “… we all know professions should be more gender balanced and there should be a much more level playing field for entry to these roles,” he added. “So it feels like a good statement to have a female lead – there are women who do occupy these roles and as we go forward there will be more. There’s no real gender specificity to Lana, she doesn’t carry out her role in a feminine way, she’s just a professional. I think it’s really important in terms of representation. If we showed the world as male-dominated it might be sending the wrong message to people who might be considering that career.” Evidently, Trigger Point’ isn’t based on a true story. However, it’s perfectly understandable if someone thinks it is.
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