The writers of New Tricks have hit back at the cast’s criticism of their work after Amanda Redman, Alun Armstrong and Dennis Waterman complained to Radio Times magazine that nowadays the show is “too bland” and “not as anarchic as it used to be.”
Armstrong also claimed that the cast re-wrote the series’ scripts if they didn’t feel that stories were as good as they could be.
However, writer Julian Simpson took to Twitter earlier today to rebut that particular claim. Over the course of several tweets, he wrote: "Wait a second... *smells a rat* if certain actors re-wrote the scripts, how come they don't know the lines better?
"I was going to be writing today, instead I'm just going to hand the actors a pad and pen. I wish I'd learned this 15 years ago.
"A New Tricks I wrote and directed airs on Monday. I can tell you EXACTLY how much of it the actors wrote: not a f**king comma.The following week, Sarah Pinborough's episode is on. I directed that too. Cast contribution to script? Big fat zero.
"I also wrote and directed episode 10 of the new series. How much did the cast change? Are we sensing a pattern here...?"
Simpson later joked that the cast should prepare for some less-than-dignified exits from the show when they leave. He quipped: "As has been widely reported, New Tricks cast members are leaving next series. Guess who's writing their exit eps... *finger guns*."
His fellow New Tricks writer Lisa Holdsworth was more succinct in her reaction to the cast’s whinging. On her Twitter feed, she simply said: “"I'd like to say that [the article] shocked me, but it didn't. W**kers."