Judge David Johnson part of the Movie Watching and Writing About It Team.
Our review of Murder Investigation Team: Series One, published February 17th, 2011, is also available.
A standard-issue crime procedural that seems a lot more refined because of the accents.
If you're looking for the most generic title for a TV series ever devised, this is a good start: Murder Investigation Team. At least you have no misconceptions about what awaits you on these discs. Indeed there is a team of investigators and murder is what they tend to investigate.
The crack squad is led by Detective Constable Rosie MacManus and Detective Sergeant Trevor Hands (great name!). Their team is sent to all manner of grisly crime scenes, and their investigations typically uncover a serpentine plot behind the murder. As you'd expect.
When you consider each episode clocks in at an almost-feature-length 70 minutes, you can be assured you'll get plenty of story for your buck. The narrative often expands beyond the boundaries of the circumstances surrounding that episode's respective crime. The balance between the individual cases and the longer haracter-centric arcs is well-executed, making for a show that moves beyond the "murder of the week" scenario. Thankfully, the characters are interesting and volatile enough to make for some decent soap opera.
As for the cases, they're okay. In the interest of full disclosure, the procedural does very little me, having been thoroughly over-saturated with the genre. So if you consider yourself a fan of case-cracking and fingerprint-dusting, you can probably add 10 or so points to the final score.
Murder Investigation Team just doesn't have enough firepower to change my tune. Aside from a few notable characters—specifically Trevor Hands—and some saltier language than you'll find on CBS, there isn't much difference between MIT and whatever procedural you currently watch with your grandmother. The cases are fine, but nothing jumps out as particularly unique. One installment finds Trevor Hands implicated as a possible evil-doer, which is pretty interesting, but less because of the machinations of the mystery and more because Trevor Hands is cool.
Murder Investigation Team: Series 2 gives us four episodes on two discs, the final episodes to hit the airwaves. Acorn's DVD set is lean, but adequate: 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen, Dolby 2.0 stereo, English subtitles, and one interview as your bonus feature.
Not Guilty, only because the show's not bad; just all very familiar.
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Scales of Justice
Studio: Acorn Media
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