At the beginning of National Treasure, we’re introduced to Paul Finchley (Robbie Coltrane). Paul takes the stage and introduces his friend Karl (Tim McInnerny). Karl and Paul have worked together for many years and Karl is being awarded with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his role in the duo. Moments later, the men separate. Paul heads to the receptionist area, where he speaks with a fan. Simon (Jeremy Swift) and Paul compliment a young woman’s figure. Seconds later, Paul speaks with Tom (Sam Hoare) and the Director of Data. Then, Paul returns home to his wife, Marie (Julie Walters).
Paul and Marie speak about Paul’s night, before they head to bed. That night, Paul wakes up and checks Yahoo News for comments about his speech. In the morning, Paul and Marie care for their grandchildren. Seconds later, they’re disturbed by a knock at the door. Marie answers the door and is introduced to DI Palmer and DS Georgeson. It is revealed that a rape allegation has been made against Paul. A search warrant is served on the property. Paul tells Marie to contact Simon, before he leaves with the officers. Paul spots the police officers raiding his property, as the police car speeds by.
Paul is left in a jail cell for a lengthy period of time before his attorney arrives. Jerome (Badou Ceesay) enters and introduces himself, before Paul complains that everyone thinks he is Jimmy Savile. Paul insists he kept Jimmy away from their parties, since he knew he was dodgy. Seconds later, Paul and his attorney speak with the detective. He provides her with some basic information, before he is asked about his daughter Dee. Paul admits she has been through some rough times recently. Then, he is asked about his sex life. It is revealed that a Rebecca Thornton made the allegations against Paul. She insists she was raped in December of 1993 on the set of Japes. Paul denies everything and insists he doesn’t remember that particular day.
Paul is immediately given bail. Marie explains that the police left their house in a mess and also took their computers. She also reveals that they showed her some of Paul’s pornography. Paul insists it is nothing more than a desperate woman being desperate. Marie refuses to allow Paul to sleep in their bed. Instead, he sleeps on the couch, until his friend Karl arrives. Karl admits he was interviewed as well. Karl remains adamant that he didn’t sleep with the woman. Paul apologizes and confirms the drama will hit residuals hard. Karl gets angry and insists he doesn’t care about residuals at this point. Paul breaks down and is comforted by his friend. That night, Paul tells Marie that he is innocent. Nonetheless, he realizes that he would say he was, even if he wasn’t. Jerome pays the couple a visit seconds later.
Jerome reveals that one of the paps got a picture of Paul. Paul is shown the tabloid. Jerome promises to get back at them, before introducing himself to Marie. He also insists they’re fishing for more potential victims. In the morning, Paul speaks with the press and proclaims his innocence. While Marie prays, Paul visits his daughter Dee (Andrea Riseborough). They speak about Paul’s current troubles, before the conversation turns to Dee’s childhood. Dee speaks about her dream of Paul being violent and attacking Dave. Paul confesses he is concerned for his daughter, before he leaves. Paul calls a friend and asks to stay the full night. It turns out to be a woman, who Paul has been having an affair with. She promises not to say anything, since she doesn’t like the attention.
Paul heads to the network and meets with Simon. They see Karl on the television defending Paul. Paul promises that there is no truth to the allegations. Nonetheless, the network decides to replace him for the time being. When Paul returns home, he is grilled by Marie. He tells her about his day, before admitting he stayed all night with someone. Paul asks for a shower, but Marie is convinced they need to get to Jerome’s office as quickly as possible. Paul is introduced to Jerome’s ex-cop partner, before learning that seven women have come forward. One of the women was a former babysitter named Christina Farnborough. Paul returns home and screams in the shower.
National Treasure Review
National Treasure is a little bit slow, but very intriguing and emotional. Robbie Coltrane and Julie Walters work exceptionally well together. The premiere episode set up the series perfectly, while simultaneously creating a complex character in Paul Finchley. At times, Paul seems truthful and honest. Nonetheless, some of his behavior is a little bit off.
The conversation with Dee really put Paul into a different light, but it is unclear whether or not the woman can be trusted. Has he been wrongfully accused or is he truly another Jimmy Savile? The first episode of National Treasure scores a 7.5 out of 10.