52 of 53 people found the following review helpful
on June 21, 2010
New Tricks is a cold-case comedy/police procedural drama: a dramedy, if you will. The actors, the writing, and the directing are just superb - QUALITY. It doesn't take long before you'll be laughing out loud, but viewers still feel the serious nature of the crimes being solved. Each crime is a cold case, and each detective has his own strength and idiosyncracies - so we avoid boredom and predictability. Each crime is solved differently. Each episode is guaranteed to be simultaneously hilarious. I never miss this show on BBC America if I can get it - and I'm ordering Seasons 3-6 from Amazon-UK since the US is taking much too long to release them (I have a region-free DVD player compatible with US televisions). I highly recommend this sophisticated mystery series because of its ability to carry off serious police procedural with quality comedy.
35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
on June 10, 2010
This is absolutely the best thing on television - and not just for us viewers "of a certain age." The profesionalism, the polish, the proper use of language - this is what adult entertainment should be. Many times no words are necessary - just a shrug or nod or facial expression are enough to convey a response. Young people today should use this series as a university course to learn the art of acting. The DVDs aren't coming out quickly enough for me, but I treasure the two series I have and eagerly await more.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on June 12, 2011
This is a British variation on the cold case theme. For the most part, the cases are cold but not ancient. The cast is tight, funny and believable without all of the usual solved-in-court nonsense. Each episode features a believable plot pursued by a tight ensemble.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on December 9, 2010
We just finished watching year 5 ( obtained from the UK ) and years 3, 4, and 5 exceed any detective series we have watched (possible exception of the totally different "Bones"). It continues in the same vein as before with unusual plots ( no repetitive themes ), brilliant humor, and fantastic acting ( as only true professionals can do ). It also is a wonderful perspective on societies' attitudes over the decades as based on current values. A great and fun trip to the past with a firm basis in the present. Easily understood by US and UK alike. Fantastic triple leads comparable to the original Star Trek, with the addition of a modern day female who seems to totally grasp the situation. The private lives of the characters have never overwhelmed the plots.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
If you haven't seen the two earlier seasons of New Tricks (Season One and Season Two), grab those first - and check out my reviews of both of those volumes. They are wonderful. Now, if you are reading this review and you have seen the previous volumes, I don't need to give you the plot or tell you how engaging the characters are. You know - or you wouldn't have come this far. I was hooked on the series from the pilot episode on the Series One set and, like peanuts, I just can get enough of the adventure of the team of retired police officers and their somewhat younger female boss. These folks are like old friends now and yet the scriptwriters reveal new layers and facts about their lives as the episodes evolve. In this season you'll learn how Jack's wife, Mary, died. And a bit more about Brian's "past problems". The stories range from some pretty gruesome murders to a turf war between competing ice cream trucks.
It's my understanding that series is still going in England but the DVD versions are coming out slower in the US. Thanks to Acorn Media Group, this Season Three was released in February, shortly after I finished watching Season Two. (and - mark your calendars! - Season Four is coming - I'm told - in June!).
This is the first volume to include anything that seriously can be considered a "Bonus". It's a 20-minute "Behind The Scenes" featurette. Sadly, its really a lot of scenes repeated from Season Three mixed with interviews with three or four of the GUEST actors. Not one comment from any of the UCON team! And even the print quality of the scenes shown is distorted. But I'm not deducting any stars. Just alerting readers that its not much.
One other thing occurs in Season Three that did not occur in the prior two. In fact, it is only in the last episode of this season. The show's producers have gone the way of American TV soap operas. They inserted a "cliffhanger" at the end. I won't give it away - I certainly don't want to decrease the enjoyment of watching the series - but now I have to wait at least three months to see what happens. Until now, each episode stood on its own and could be watched in any sequence. Oh well, I can't have everything!
This is still one of the smartest character driven shows I've seen and I just cant wait till I get to see more!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Season 3 makes you laugh all the way through each unsolved reopen crime. This quirky team is lead by foxy DCSandra Pullman (Amanda Redman -`At Home with the Braithwaithes' 'Little Dorrit `) who runs OCOS (Unsolved Crime & Open Case Squad) from the basement due to a bad situation of her past. OCOS could also stand for "Unsolved Crime's Outrageous Squad". She recruits 3 ex-cops from retirement. Pullman is blond, aggressive, a good-looker, likes cheap wine, with a wild private life, and bound to get the job done, one way or another. The 4 combine to solve the cold cases, but in such a funny way. This BBC Crime/Comedy show is still in production as of 2011. Will it last as long as Midsomer Murders, also yet continuing? It is just as good. Really funny.
The other quirky cops:
Brian Lane (Alun Armstrong-' Garrow's Law', 'Little Dorrit' 'Braveheart `) on meds, a great memory, biker, funniest cop, and married to Esther (Susan Jameson- 'When the Boat Comes In' & reader for many Catherine Cookson audio novels).
Gerry Standing (Dennis Waterman-`The Sweeney' 'Stay Lucky `) is a womanizer divorced 3 times, is this a problem? Yes
Jack Halford (James Bolam-`Beiderbecke' 'Born & Bred' 'End of the Affair `) lost his wife and now talks to her regularly at the memorial in his back yard. She yet brings him comfort and investigative success. He sometimes looks like and acts funny like Bob Hope.
Each episode has guest stars, too many to catch them all.
Subtitles, YES. Also 20 min behind the scenes, & filmographies.
The theme song; "It's all right, it's OK, doesn't really matter if you're old & grey. . ." and then the comedy crime investigation begins.
Season 3 episodes (58 min each):
Reopened is the death of a teacher in a sports car. Did the hubby cause it? Not a crazy woman driver? Human emotions? Star: Charles Dale-`Casualty'
70s death of a left-wing union boss suicide or not. Political involvement? Did he steal $$? Was MIS involved? Guest star: Maggie Steed-`Pie In The Sky' a really good series too.
3 Old Dogs
30-yr old investigation of animal cruelty as new deaths have same MO. Serial dog killer? Brian's Scruffy dies, & Jack lands in hospital. Sandra gets hit-on. Guest star: Richard Briers-`Monarch of the Glen'
4 Diamond Geezers
A notorious criminal is back in London. Brian goes undercover related to unsolved police informant murder. Huge twisted ending. Guest star: Michael Feast-`Murphy's Law 3' & `Penelope'.
5 Wicca Work
Is a 10-yr-unsolved librarian's murder involving witchcraft? Events & strange happenings convince the team of the supernatural. Guest star: Stephanie Beacham-`Coronation Street' & `Bad Girls'.
6 Bank Robbery
Gerry's informant returns, 1987 bank robbery reopened which included a death. Suspect has after 17 yrs turned celebrity. Is there a bad cop tie? Even laughs come from a DCS being assaulted & cop victim hit-&-run. Guest star: Anton Lesser-`Little Dorrit', `Garrow's Law', `Vanity Fair'.
7 Ice Cream Wars
Case of the ice cream bandit, mid 90s, with 2 families erupting. USOS cracks down, but with the team in individual directions. Guest stars: Terence Harvey-"Basic Instinct 2', `From Hell' plus Natalie J. Robb-`Emmerdale Farm' & `Doctors'.
Man released after 8 yrs for arson. Team reopens, Jack's last case before retiring due to his wife's hit-&-run. Pullman gets promotion offer. Thriller ending. Guest stars: Joe Absolom-`Doc Martin' & `Eastenders' plus Karl Johnson-`Lark Rise to Candleford', plus Hannah Waterman-`Eastenders'.
This Series is "HUMOROUS MURDER" an oxymoron. Hilarious, like a team of British Mayberry RFD Barney's, sometimes.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on February 25, 2011
This release of Season three (3) of "New Tricks" has been eagerly anticipated by me because I loved Seasons 1 and 2 of the series. I can now add Season three (3) to my admiration list. I love Season three (3) for it continues what I loved in the preceding seasons. That being a very well written and acted series about some retired older cops returning to a "cold case" unit to solve some heinous unsolved cases in often very amusing ways mainly because the old returning cops have "Issues" that their leader (fabulously played by Amanda Redman of "Little Dorit") must deal with.
Season three features eight (8) episodes on three (3) discs running about 2 hrs each and it is so very good. I can hardly wait for future releases of this series because it is such a very good British murder/mystery/detective series that is certainly different in wonderful ways from others in this genre--it features older cops solving crimes often in very amusing ways. I love it.
By the way, the third episode entitled "Old Dogs" is simply wonderful. That episode is filled with humour and involves a serial killer that kills certain kinds of dogs not humans as thought intially but our team finds out, after awhile that humans are his/her victims too including one of their own that narrowly escapes death.
(Again I used the subtitles and I am so very glad that I did because the scrips are so well written with loads of very funny lines)
14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on April 12, 2010
Enjoy this series. We will collect them all as we find them funny and thought provoking. Enjoyable evenings watching them.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on April 30, 2010
This is truly a great BBC series..!!.....The stories revolve around a special investigative section of the British Police that investigate "cold cases" and cases no one else wants. The group is headed by a woman and 4 retired inspectors brought back from retirement to do these investigations. Funny, serious, quirky, and thoroughly entertaining in British humor sort of way. I have seen all of the first two seasons and am anxiously waiting for season 3.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 6, 2011
We have have seen every season of New Tricks and love them. Great acting, all the actors not only can act, they have timing so that the humor is truly humorous - you don't need a laugh track to tip you off that something was said that is supposed to be funny. The writing is exceptional - I hate that so many U.S. shows (and now more and more U.K. programs corrupted by us) have simply godawful writing - hoping that talented actors can pull something out of a hat - you need both good writing and acting and if you want both, see each and every episode of New Tricks. Unreserved positive reviews for all seasons. Both my husband and I love them and never miss an episode on PBS.