Kavanagh QC

Genres: Drama



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Kavanagh QC is a British television series created by Ted Childs and Susan Rogers for Carlton Television and starring John Thaw as the brilliant criminal law barrister James Kavanagh QC. The series deals with his battles in the courtroom as well as his domestic dramas.

The series originally aired in the UK on ITV from 1995-2001. There are two 2-hour specials and 25 90-minute episodes in five seasons.

Kavanagh QC originally aired in South Africa on DStv's BBC Prime and Hallmark channels.

A rebroadcast of Season 2 premiered on Hallmark on Tuesday 29 April 2008, at 22h45. There are six 90-minute episodes in the second season, airing Tuesdays to Fridays.


Kavanagh QC is a legal drama series starring John Thaw (Inspector Morse) as barrister James Kavanagh QC, one of the most highly respected criminal advocates in London.

From a northern working-class background, James Kavanagh has climbed to the top of an elite profession through hard work and a love of the law.

He has earned the respect and admiration of colleagues and opponents alike, as well as a lifestyle to accompany his high salary, but his dedication to work, the long hours and difficult cases, have taken their toll on life at home with his wife and two teenage children.

Despite his success, Kavanagh does not always have an easy time in court or in chambers. His sympathy for minority causes, and his willingness to take on worthy cases for minimal reward, does not always go down well with his peers.

It is Kavanagh’s rapier-like cross-examination technique which has been fundamental to his success in court. His ability to act for the prosecution in some cases and the defence in others is demonstrated as Kavanagh acts for a man accused of rape, a pornography star, a bitter family man, a vigilante and a prostitute accused of murder.

Other cases include a doctor charged with murdering his wife, a vicar accused of sexual harassment, the death of a baby and the sinking of a trawler with the loss of five young lives.

As the series develops Kavanagh must not only deal with challenging new cases at work but he and his teenage children also have to come to terms with the death of his wife and face the future without her.

Kavanagh QC goes beyond traditional courtroom dramas to uncover the pressures, both
personal and professional, of legal battles and provides a compelling representation of the euphoric ups and costly downs of success and failure in the Law.

Guest artists include: Alison Steadman, Tom Courtenay, Kenneth Cranham, Virginia McKenna, Michael Williams, Sheila Hancock and Corin Redgrave.


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