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* PhoneBooth: In "What Will Survive", the missing Estonian woman is making a panicked call for help from an extremely isolated phone booth when she is grabbed by her abductor. Tracing the call, the police find blood on the floor of the booth.

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* ProtagonistTitle

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* BeingGoodSucks: The cops in ''DCI Banks'' seem to be treated very coldly by the general public in Eastvale; absolutely thankless when cases are cracked, and apportioning blame and scorn when even the smallest thing goes wrong.

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* MyGreatestFailure: DCI Alan Banks has a bad habit of making stringent promises to grieving families that justice will be delivered, only for circumstances to inevitably conspire against delivering the promises. It usually earns Banks liberal amounts of scorn, hatred and blame from everybody, from grieving widows to the wrongly-accused.

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* InternalAffairs: DS Annie Cabbot starts off as an IA officer, investigating a young PC for police brutality at Banks's station. When she deliberately loses the evidence and lets the PC avoid jail, to stick one up the PR-focused chief constables, Banks offers her a transfer to his CID unit.
** She is later forcibly seconded back to IA in season 3, to investigate DI Helen Morton's handling of a botched raid at a house. Once again, she chooses the team over promotion, and goes out of her way to ensure Morton is exonerated.

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* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: Several examples here.
** DS Winsome Jackman abruptly disappears with no explanation after Season 2. She is replaced by DC Tariq Lang, who gets no welcome or introduction, and just 'appears' as part of the team one day.
*** Lang himself then drops off the face of the earth after Season 4 in the same fashion, and is replaced by DC Vince Grady (but Grady does get the luxury of being formally introduced to the team by CS Anderson).
** The same also happens to CS Ron Mclaughlin, a regular recurring character for the entire first four seasons of the show. He vanishes after Season 4, and CS Anderson suddenly shows up in his place in Season 5, again without any introduction of Anderson's character, or any explanation for Mclaughlin's disappearance.

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* IHaveYourWife: In "Bad Boy", Banks' daughter Tracey is kidnapped in an attempt to get him to remove a gun being held in the evidence store.

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* TroublingUnchildlikeBehaviour: In "Wednesday's Child", Banks and his team investigate the abduction of an 11 year old boy. As the investigation proceeds, they discover the boy has been delivering heroin for a local dealer and helped to bury one of his friends who had died of an overdose.

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* LetterboxArson: Fuel and fireworks dumped through a letterbox are used to start a fatal HouseFire in "What Will Survive''.

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* PunkInTheTrunk: "Ghosts" opens with the camera following a car as it drives through the streets of the city, passing the revelers coming out of the pubs and clubs. The car drives out into the country where it stops. The driver gets out and opens the boot, revealing a dead body. the driver then drops the body down a ravine and drives off.

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* OrSoIHeard: In "Ghosts", the squad are discussing the lap dancing club the VictimOfTheWeek had visited before being murdered. Kenny wonders how a student could have afforded to go there, and mentions the exorbitant cover price. This earns him a significant look from DI Morton, and he adds "...or that's what I've been told".


* ColdCash: In "The Buried", Banks and his team are searching a suspect's flat anf find a bag of cash hidden in the freezer. Banks makes a joke about 'frozen assets'.

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* ColdCash: In "The Buried", Banks and his team are searching a suspect's flat anf and find a bag of cash hidden in the freezer. Banks makes a joke about 'frozen assets'.


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* GPSEvidence: In "The Buried", a footprint left behind at the scene of a crime contains the mixture of the chemicals used in match heads. This leads the police to the only old match factory in the area.

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* LockedInTheBathroom: In "The Buried", DI Morton locks herself in a stall in the ladies room after she receives divorce papers from her husband. Banks somewhat timorously follows her in to find out what is wrong.

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