DVD Review: Midsomer Murders: Set 9

Midsomer Murders is based on the work of mystery author Caroline Graham. Midsomer County apparently is home to more vile homicidal lunatics than all five boroughs of New York combined. Now before you start to conjure images of a lawless frontier land, let me say that Midsomer country looks much like any other rural county in England. It is full of small towns and villages. The folks tend their gardens and chat after church.

Sadly, they also kill off one another at an alarming rate. Not since Cabot Cove (Murder She Wrote…I would like to note for the record that I had to look it up, I have no MSW knowledge in my brain.) has there been a more dangerous peaceful, quaint community.

This series could easily be tossed in with Murder, She Wrote and others of that nature, but that would be a huge mistake. This series has a bit of a gleam in its eye. It is as though they know the county has way too many murders and murderers. They realize this is pretty ridiculous, but are cool with it. At times, Detective Barnaby’s (John Nettles) reaction to another body is more of a “Ah, I was wondering when that would turn up” than real surprise. It is Detective Sergeant Scott that is left to express dismay at the bloodthirsty ruffians that populate this seemingly peaceful county. The humor is dry; droll might be a better term but it is also fairly smart. The mysteries are just clever enough to keep you guessing.

As I said, it would be a huge mistake to clump this in with all of the usual cozy mysteries. There is simply too much life in this one.
For extras, we get next to nothing. There is a text bio on author Caroline Graham (whose books the series is based on).
This set upholds the nice traditions that have been established by the previous series (aka seasons) and will be enjoyed by those that are fans of the series, as well as anyone looking for a bit of fun with a little (or a lot) of murder thrown in.

Jeremy Lynch
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