It's every shopkeeper's worst nightmare: a customer walks into a shop, pulls out a gun and demands money.
And for Mani Dalir (Mojean Aria), the armed confrontation in the opening minutes of Dead Lucky is even more traumatic because of his background.
A foreign student from the wartorn Middle East, he's seen firsthand what guns can do and is terrified.
Mani survives the encounter, but when the police arrive, they realise the gunman is notorious criminal Corey Baxter (Ian Meadows). He killed a detective while fleeing the scene of a robbery a year before and has been on the run since.
And Baxter, Mani soon learns, doesn't like to leave loose ends.
Before long, another shop worker is dead and Mani – with no memory of what happened – is arrested.
It's up to Detective Grace Gibbs (Rachel Griffiths) to track down the killer and, hopefully, find justice for her former partner Lincoln (Lincoln Younes) – the cop Baxter killed.
The part of the troubled Grace is tailor-made for Rachel. The 49-year-old is back in Australia after a career in Hollywood that saw her win multiple awards and even receive an Oscar nomination in 1999.
Separated from her husband (played by Matt Nable) and barely keeping her life together, Grace has spiralled out of control since Baxter killed her partner.
Her bosses are watching her for any signs of misconduct and she has to attend anger-management therapy.
"Why do you think you're here?" her counsellor asks the detective as their session inevitably collapses.
Grace replies: "Because some people think I'm angry and they happen to be in management."
Grace isn't interested in getting in touch with her feelings. She just wants to get back on the streets, find Baxter and put him away for life.
Reluctantly at her side is trainee detective Charlie Fung (Yoson An).
The best friend of her dead partner, Charlie doesn't trust Grace and has been watching to see if she makes mistakes that will get her fired.
And caught up in the middle of Grace's vendetta is a sharehouse of students – Mani included – who have somehow found themselves in Baxter's sights.
One of those is Jess, played by former Home And Away star Tessa De Josselin.
Jess, she says, is a girl out of her depth in the murky twists and turns of Dead Lucky.
"She gets thrown into the deep end of something that is completely foreign to her," Tessa, 29, says.
"This is something she's never had to deal with before, coming from the country and never having been involved in anything criminal.
"It was fun as an actor to be able to play a character in such a high-stakes situation.
"Dead Lucky is not lukewarm in any way. It's scary and gripping – and for an actor, it's just really fun."
Dead Lucky premieres Wednesday 25th of July at 9:30pm on SBS.