Case Number 23577: Small Claims Court


BBC Video // 1999 // 363 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // March 27th, 2012

The Charge

Two guys, four mysteries, uneven oral hygiene.

The Case

Season Five of the BBC's mid-'90s two-man procedural Dalziel & Pascoe brings another selection of feature-length mysteries, pitting old-school Superintendent Andy Dalziel (Warren Clarke) and his partner Peter Pascoe (Colin Buchanan) against all manner of criminal element.

Four 90-minute mysteries on two discs:

* "A Sweeter Lazarus"
A double murder at a women's refuge brings up baggage from Dalziel's past, as he and his partner attempt to work with a mysterious witness to bring the killer to light.

* "Cunning Old Fox"
A fox hunt becomes a crime scene, when a young woman is found killed. The challenge for Dalziel and Pascoe: penetrating the closed-off community and whittling down their overwhelming suspects list.

* "Foreign Bodies"
When a body washes ashore and ruins Dalziel's romantic getaway (ugh), he and Pascoe are led to a university filled with secrets.

* "Above the Law"
Dalziel and Pascoe find themselves pulled down into the political muck as they attempt to sift through the fallout of the shooting of a judge.

How many procedurals does the BBC have in its vault? Seriously, each month it seems like there's a new release from the heyday of feature-length mystery solving. Dalziel & Pascoe stacks up nicely against its brethren. The two main characters drive the action and the show looks at their personal lives as much as their professional adventures. The partners are indeed an "odd couple," with Dalziel the gruff awkward blowhard (he mistook his new commander for a stripper), and Pascoe the slick, young, not-quite-as-accomplished counterpart. Clarke and Buchanan have good chemistry which is the main reason the show works.

A lean DVD, with a so-so 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen, Dolby 2.0 stereo mix, and nothing for extras.

The Verdict

Not Guilty. Mystery fans will be well-served by these tales.

Review content copyright © 2012 David Johnson; Site layout and review format copyright © 1998 - 2016 HipClick Designs LLC

Scales of Justice
Judgment: 85

Perp Profile
Studio: BBC Video
Video Formats:
* 1.78:1 Anamorphic

Audio Formats:
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)

* English (SDH)

Running Time: 363 Minutes
Release Year: 1999
MPAA Rating: Not Rated

Distinguishing Marks
* None

* IMDb

* Official Site