Acorn Media
Release date: June 1st, 2010
MSRP: $39.99
Stars: John Nettles, Jason Hughes

And back we go to the most dangerous county in all of the U.K. Midsomer is home to enough murders to scare off most Baltimore gangs. With characters from the novels of Caroline Graham, MM offers up entertaining tradition English village murder mysteries, with just a touch of humor and perhaps a sly wink to we gentle viewers.

John Nettles returns as Detective Chief Inspector Tom Barnaby, with Jason Hughes also back as Detective Sergeant Ben Jones, his promising young sidekick. Nettles has been playing the role of Barnaby for 14 years, yet still has a spring in his step and offers up energy and enthusiasm. The stories themselves are nothing new, but still have wit and charm enough to keep us coming back for more.

These episodes originally aired, in the U.K. in 2008 and have not yet seen the light of day on this side of the pond. Three tales are included: Blood Wedding has Barnaby and Jones dealing with some deaths that have been triggered by an upper class wedding. Shot at Dawn finds a generations old feud between the Hicks and the Hammonds is reignited by WW 1 memorial. Left for Dead: A series of deaths related to a construction site may be linked to the disappearance of a boy decades earlier.

We do get an entertaining featurette entitled Super Sleuths that looks at the first decade of the show and has comments by Nettles and Caroline Graham as well as numerous others.

Midsomer Murders may well be the best traditional mystery series made. After over a decade, the show continues to provide enjoyable tales. Set 15 is well worth checking out for those that prefer their crimes with a little tea.


Jeremy Lynch