This is surely David Tennant's moment. The Scottish actor's turn as a dour cop in Broadchurch was so well received he's set to return for a second season - and he's starring in an American remake, too.

Tennant gives another formidable performance in PBS Masterpiece Mystery!'s otherwise mediocre BBC import, The Escape Artist, a two-part legal drama that premieres at 9 p.m. Sunday on WHYY-TV.

Tennant stars as Will Burton, a brilliant barrister who defends the worst criminals in London and gets them off every time.

Will also has the ideal home life, sharing a stunning, totally mod flat with his loving wife, Kate (Ashley Jensen), and their young son, Jamie (Gus Barry). Oh, and they have a gorgeous country cottage.

It's a perfect life - and by TV drama logic, it's ripe for some tragedy.

The darkness comes in the form of Liam Foyle.

Played with surprising tenderness and insight by Toby Kebbell, Foyle is otherwise your standard psycho who tortures, kills, and dismembers women. He is as guilty as they come, but Will gets him off on a murder charge. Disgusted by his client, Will refuses to shake his hand. Foyle's ego can't take it and he plots to destroy Will's lovely family.

Part Cape Fear, part Rumpole of the Bailey, The Escape Artist features fine performances. But none of the actors can save the drama's sheer predictabilty. Or its preposterous leaps in logic.

Angels who kill

Thought you knew angels? Think again.

The winged creatures are anything but cuddly in Syfy's supernatural thriller Dominion. Premiering Thursday, this violent, befuddling yarn is about an apocalyptic war fought between angels on earth.

One side, led by archangel Gabriel, wants to exterminate humanity. The other side, sadly, is just one dude, the archangel and heavenly general Michael.

He loves humans and vows to protect them.

Dominion has all the stock characters an end-time fairy tale needs, including an earnest messiah (Kings star Christopher Egan) and an earnest princess (Roxanne McKee).

Strange, quite silly in parts, and reminiscent of the CW show Supernatural, Dominion is a sequel to the widely panned 2010 horror flick Legion. (Why make a series based on a flop? You tell me.)

Despite it all, Dominion is quite fun. Just don't take its depiction of angels as gospel truth.

TV REVIEW

The Escape Artist

9 p.m. Sunday on WHYY TV12

Dominion

9 p.m. Thursday on Syfy

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tirdad@phillynews.com

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