Matt Nable is Jock Ross

For five weeks the audience watching Bikie Wars: Brothers In Arms have borne witness to the disintegration of a motorcycle club that it’s ego-maniacal leader was too pig-headed to realise he was the reason for it’s splintering. As the Comancheros, led by Jock Ross (Matt Nable), headed west and left behind a disenfranchised, rag-tag group of men Anthony “Snoddy” Spencer (Callan Mulvey) had no choice but to step up and take the leadership of this new group and it was obvious they would form their own club – becoming the Bandidos. The tension never abated, particularly between Snoddy & Jock with the former feeling abandoned by his one-time mentor and the latter feeling exceedingly threatened by his protege. The violence was inevitable, but even they didn’t expect the massacre that was to unfold.

Bikie Wars should be considered a success for Channel 10. Strong ratings in key demos and a good result (a strong second in the timeslot) for the final ep up against the season finale of Packed To the Rafters showed that the audience were engaged. One of the few negatives about the series was after building so much tension across five and a half hours of story the last have of the final episode seemed to drag and was far too procedural, though it was a necessary post script to a spectacular showdown that was the basis for the story.

Incredible performances from Mulvey and Nable led a very strong male-heavy cast that, despite bikies often being portrayed as one-dimensional thugs, delivered layered characters and intense performances. Richard Sutherland, Jeremy Lindsay Taylor, Damian Walshe-Howling, Anthony Hayes, Aaron Fa’aoso, Luke Hemsworth, Richard Cawthorne and Todd Lasance are but a smattering of the blokes involved in bringing these characters to vivid life. Special mentions to Susie Porter as Jock’s wife Vanessa and Maeve Dermody as Snoddy’s girl Lee – two very determined and strong women of their own right.

Director Peter Andrikidis clearly worked very hard to ensure that the intensity and colour of the story was lifted from the pages of the book the series was based on and given an appropriately dirty and bloody life on screen. The soundtrack from Mark “Diesel” Lizotte provided the right base for many scenes and wonderful musical colour across the opening and closing titles.

Channel 10 are to be commended for securing such a well-rounded series from Screentime (who also make the Underbelly series) and encouraged to deliver more Australian drama of this calibre to our screens.