Case Number 27172: Small Claims Court


Acorn Media // 2013 // 369 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // April 3rd, 2014

The Charge

In 1960s Britain, an upstanding detective takes on a dangerous world.

The Case

Chief Inspector George Gently (Martin Shaw) and Sergeant John Bacchus (Lee Ingleby) return following an explosive finale to Series 5. Both detectives were seriously injured following a violent encounter with of one of Gently's nemeses. Six months later, the two get back to solving crimes in 1969 Britain, which continues to go through cultural upheaval. Regardless of changing social norms, murders still need solving and Gently's the best in the business. Four more feature-length mysteries to sink your teach into.

* "Gently Between the Lines"
A slum is schedule to be bulldozed and protestors have flocked to ground zero to protest the teardown. One morning a protestor is found dead and Gently catches the case. He's got Bacchus -- who was considering a resignation -- by his side once again, thanks to a pep talk, and the two must negotiate the volatile politics of the demolition and the fiery attitudes of the protestors to catch the killer.

* "Blue for Bluebird"
The body of a young woman washes up on shore. Investigation reveals she was a staff member at the Bluebird family campground, a relic of the time period that offered attendees a summer's worth of singing, dancing, swimming and hidden unsavory shenanigans. It's this last bit that might have something to do with the murder and Gently and Bacchus discover a disturbing underbelly to the happy-go-lucky façade of the camp.

* "Gently with Honour"
When a soldier gets beaten to death in a Turkish bath, Gently and Bacchus start digging into the wild world of top secret military tests. Turns out the Brits have been devising some innovative ways to combat the Red Menace, and the fallout is leaving ruined lives behind. Meanwhile, Gently is starting to feel long in the tooth.

* "Gently Going Under"
A small mining community is shaken by a murder and as the mines dry up and the disgruntled workers consider striking, the consequences of the crime will be more far-reaching than Gently and Bacchus first anticipate.

I'm a fan. George Gently remains one of my favorite mystery series still on the air -- though, to be completely honest, I've found more value in the relationship between the two main characters versus the mysteries themselves.

The narratives are still intriguing and the payoffs tend to deliver some off-putting revelations, but the over-reliance on sparkplug '60s issues (the labor movement, Cold War jitters, and, of course, abortion and gay issues, which are mainstays for at least one episode per series) has grown a tad stale. Still, it's a minor complaint and something that doesn't come close to outclassing the stellar work of Shaw and Ingleby who continue their effortless chemistry. Series 7 promises even greater character work.

Acorn serves up a nice set in George Gently: Series 6 (Blu-ray), headlined by a reliably strong 1.78:1/1080p transfer and a DTS-HD 2.0 Master Audio track. Extras include a behind-the-scenes segment, a featurette about the season, a photo gallery, cast text interviews, and some fun facts about 1969.

The Verdict

Not Gently. Er, I mean Not guilty.

Review content copyright © 2014 David Johnson; Site layout and review format copyright © 1998 - 2016 HipClick Designs LLC

Scales of Justice
Judgment: 90

Perp Profile
Studio: Acorn Media
Video Formats:
* 1.78:1 Non-Anamorphic (1080p)

Audio Formats:
* DTS HD 2.0 Master Audio (English)

* English (SDH)

Running Time: 369 Minutes
Release Year: 2013
MPAA Rating: Not Rated

Distinguishing Marks
* Featurettes
* Text Features
* Gallery

* IMDb