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The Complete Inspector Lynley Mysteries

4.4 out of 5 stars 114 customer reviews

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  • The Complete Inspector Lynley Mysteries
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Editorial Reviews

Decidedly uppercrust detective Inspector Thomas Lynley and his partner Sergeant Barbara Havers must endure a marriage made at police headquarters. Lynley is suave, sophisticated, and the eighth Earl of Asherton. Havers is rumpled, resentful, and working class--with an inborn dislike of the highborn. Despite their differences, the sleuths evolve into a potent team, employing their cunning, intuition, and street smarts to unravel some of the most heinous--and suspenseful--crimes.Based on the popular detective novels of Elizabeth George, and starring Nathaniel Parker (Far from the Madding Crowd) and Sharon Small (About a Boy), this set includes all 23 Inspector Lynley Mysteries:A Great DeliveranceWell-Schooled in MurderPayment in BloodFor the Sake of ElenaMissing JosephPlaying for the AshesIn the Presence of the EnemyA Suitable VengeanceDeception on His MindIn Pursuit of the Proper SinnerA Traitor to MemoryA Cry for JusticeIf Wishes Were HorsesIn Divine ProportionIn the Guise of DeathThe Seed of CunningThe Word of GodNatural CausesOne Guilty DeedChinese WallsIn the Blink of an EyeLimboKnow Thine EnemySpecial DVD features include a video interview with Elizabeth George, downloadable materials from the Masterpiece Mystery! Book & Film Club, a virtual tour of the MYSTERY! studio, Q&A with Nathaniel Parker and Sharon Small, and more!

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Nathaniel Parker, Sharon Small
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 12
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: PBS
  • DVD Release Date: October 28, 2008
  • Run Time: 2064 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (114 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001D7T6N6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,189 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Complete Inspector Lynley Mysteries" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

"And you know what I would say? The world can wait." -- Lynley to Havers in a poignant moment from "In the Blink of an Eye."

This series was intelligent and entertaining, and one of my all time favorites in the history of television. Now that it has finally ended, despite the campaign to save it, this fabulous boxed set is being released. It covers everything from the initial "A Great Deliverance" through the final episode. For those who have never seen it, it is like finding a diamond among rocks. And for those who looked forward to seeing Lynley and Havers each season more than anyone else on television, it is the perfect opportunity to look back and remember why we fell in love with this BBC show which became a staple of PBS's Mystery.

Nathaniel Parker as Lynley and Sharon Small as Havers were perfect for their roles. The Inspector Lynley series was smart and atmospheric, Debbie Wiseman's opening music setting the tone for each intriguing installment. Based on Elizabeth George's characters, the BBC show grew and matured beyond the books, which frustrated some, yet delighted others. The dashing Lynley was originally paired with Havers due to politics and because it was taken for granted he would not be distracted by her in a romantic way. He was Oxford and she was from the other side of life.

The clashes that came in the first two seasons due to those differences became less important as the two quickly found there was more to each other than their reputations. They proved a great team and became quite close, their deep friendship and affection for each other rarely dwelled upon but always there beneath the surface. By season three when personal crisis hit both of them hard, it was each other to which they clung.
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With the "Inspector Lynley Mysteries" series at an end, the BBC has made all the episodes, from the pilot movie "A Great Deliverance" through the truncated final Set Six, available in one package. Longtime fans of the series will have the opportunity to reexamine all the episodes, while new fans can find out what they were missing.

At the heart of this series is the intriguing partnership of aristocratic Inspector Thomas Lynley and working-class Detective Sergeant Barbara Havers. Their initial pairing in the pilot was very likely a device by their superiors to drive one or the other out of service. Lynley is educated and professional, but apt to let his emotions cloud his judgement. Havers is a good cop, but initially resentful of Lynley's advantages and soured by a tough childhood and prejudice on the force. Their professionalism wins out, and their complementary abilities allow the partners to solve crimes and to build on a subtle respect for each other that will ultimately border on emotional dependence. In retrospect, Lynley's long and troubled relationship with police pathologist Helen Clyde, which progresses from best friend to fiance to wife to estranged partner, seems designed to keep Lynley and Havers' parallel relationship on a professional level.

This emotional glue of the series is also the source of frequent comedy, whether in the awkwardness of Havers' first visit to Cornwall to meet Lynley's wealthy but clearly disfunctional family, or Lynley's heroic good manners when faced with Havers' domestic chaos. Fortunately, the class distinctions wore away early, and the later disputes were largely over method. Somehow, Havers never seemed to mind riding in Lynley's excellent automobiles.
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Comment 62 of 64 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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I am not going to speak about the show since others have written about it here already. Suffice it to say that I like the show very much which is why I purchased the complete set. What I do want to talk about is the packaging. Unfortunately, many reviewers ignore this along with the quality of the transfer in many of their "reviews".

Like quite a few other DVD box sets this one has problems. First, I have been sent two Lynley sets thus far. Both had the same problem. The first keep case housing discs one and two had fork spindles both of which had broken causing the discs to float around in the keep case resulting in (unsurprisingly) scratched discs. Discs off the spindles seem to be a consistent problem with these slimline keep cases regardless of source (Milestone, Criterion Eclipse). I don't spend new money for used looking discs.

The second problem is the lack of documentation. Inspector Lynley ran on the BBC from 2001-2007 and on PBS from 2001 to 2008. In this set there is no documentation of series/season. Nor is there any indication of original run dates. Apparently WGBH thinks none of us out here in DVD buying land are interested in TV history But hey, they do list the episode titles. One should, I suppose, be grateful for small favours.

As for the transfer (which is letterboxed), it looks good. I am of two minds with respect to the appearance of the Mystery openings and closings on some of the discs. It is interesting to see the show as first presented on PBS. On the other hand, I do wonder about the editing particularly at the end of the episodes with the PBS Mystery introductions and conclusions. My sense is that there is some editing out of these end scenes as they originally appeared on the BBC given the abruptness of these endings.
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10 Comments 138 of 156 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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CC or Subtitles ?
Without CC I cannot follow the plots!
Dec 10, 2012 by Jack Spratt |  See all 5 posts
Supposedly these have subtitles, but they can only be accessed through using your TV's remote control, NOT the disc player or blueray. Infuriating to pay $149+ and not be able to return them because I opened the set.
Nov 1, 2013 by BestDayofMyLife |  See all 2 posts
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