Strike – Troubled Blood episode analysis: structure part 1.


  1. 0.45 – 2.36 Strike approached by Anna Phipps and told about her missing daughter (Dr. Margot Bamborough).
  2. 2.36 – 3.25 flashback to the disappearance in 1974.
  3. 3.25 – 4.24 flashback to Anna Phipps as a child.
  4. 4.24 – 5.21 Strike and Phipps.
  5. 5.21 – 6.34 Strike and Robin talk by phone. Robin asks about aunt Joan.
  6. 6.34 – 8.55 Strike’s aunt’s home. Discovers his aunt has incurable ovarian cancer.
  7. 8.55 – 10.59 Robin discusses case with flatmate Max.
  8. 10.59 – 12.06 Robin driving, talks with Matthew on the phone (ex-husband).
  9. 12.06 – 13.55 Strike’s sister Lucy says Strike should marry Robin.
  10. 13.55 – 15.03 Robin alone watches more videos on her phone about the case.
  11. 15.03 – 16.34 Strike on a ferry eavesdropping on strangers. Robin waits on the pier.
  12. 16.34 – 17.05 Strike and Robin talk in the car.

What can we notice about Act 1?

Firstly, three scenes are dedicated to the B story or personal stories of the characters, as opposed to the case.

Scene 6 revolves around Strike’s aunt having ovarian cancer. Scene 8 has his sister ask him why he doesn’t marry Robin. Scene 9 has Robin on the phone to her ex. We might argue the only reason we have scene 6 is so Strike can meet his sister for scene 8. I’m not sure what relevance the ovarian cancer scene has to the story, except perhaps, as it is a story by JK Rowling, pointing to the organs which are a main difference between men and women. Men cannot have ovaries. Clandestine argument? So, if scene 6 points to the feminist women’s rights theme which continues throughout the episode, then only 8 and 9 relate to the romance between Strike and Robin.

Then we might say:

1 scene relates to theme – feminism and women’s rights:

Scene 6: screen time: 2.21

2 scenes relate to Strike and Robin’s romance:

Scene 8: Screen time: 1.07

Scene 9: Screen time 1.49

The total screen time of Act 1 from 0.45 – 17.05 = 16.20

Total screen time dedicated to the new case: 12.03 (approx 75%)

Total screen time dedicated to non-case or B stories: 4.17 (approx 25%)

Total screen time dedicated to Strike and Robin’s romance: 2.56 (approx 20%)

Total screen time pointing to women’s issues / feminist themes: 2.21 (approx 15%)

What do you think?

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