The cozy villages of Midsomer County reveal their most sinister secrets in these contemporary British television mysteries. Inspired by the novels of Caroline Graham, modern master of the English village mystery, the series stars John Nettles (Bergerac) as the unflappable Detective Chief Inspector Tom Barnaby with John Hopkins (Love in a Cold Climate) as his brash young assistant, Sergeant Dan Scott.The cozy villages of Midsomer County reveal their most sinister secrets in these contemporary British television mysteries. Inspired by the novels of Caroline Graham, modern master of the English village mystery, the series stars John Nettles (Bergerac) as the unflappable Detective Chief Inspector Tom Barnaby with John Hopkins (Love in a Cold Climate) as his brash young assistant, Sergeant Dan Scott. This season is also available from Acorn Media in DVD format as Midsomer Murders Sets 9 and 10.
Elegant country estates and picturesque cottages hide dastardly activities in England’s Midsomer County, where corpses seem to stack like kindling, murders are often remarkably grotesque, and motives range from bizarre to out-and-out kinky. Based on novels and characters created by Caroline Graham and debuting in 1997, the long-running BBC series MIDSOMER MURDERS features Chief Inspector Tom Barnaby (John Nettles), his slightly daffy wife Joyce (Jane Wymark), and their theatrically ambitious daughter Cully (Laura Howard.) Tom is assisted in his cases by the sleek and cynical D.S. Dan Scott (John Hopkins) and a number of medical men, most often the dryly comic Dr. Bullard (Barry Johnson.) The repeating characters are often supported by luminaires from the British stage, screen, and television, and the scripts are memorable for their dark wit—but in spite of the humor, episodes often include a strange sense of tragedy. Although the central characters sometimes have overarching storylines, each episode stands alone, a complete story told in about an hour and forty minutes.
Two sets are identified as “Eight.” One set contains three titles: “The Maid in Splendor,” “The Straw Woman,” and “Ghosts of Christmas Past.” This set, however, contains eight titles. “Things That Go Bump In the Night” opens with the murder of an undertaker and soon segues into a spiritualist group that has roused ire in the community. “Dead in the Water” finds the Barnaby family attending a regatta—and quite naturally a body turns up the river. “Orchis Fatalis” is a story of orchid smuggling that unleashes a series of murders, and “Bantling Boy” offers a particularly grotesque solution to a series of murders surrounding a thoroughbred racing horse.
Many of the Midsomer Murders have an otherworldly edge, but few so much as “Second Sight,” wherein Barnaby and Scott are called upon to investigate deaths in a village known for residents of psychic ability. And while many of the Midsomer Murders have bizarre methods of murder, few can compete with “Hidden Depths,” a darkly witty tale that includes death via catapulted wine bottle. “Sauce for the Goose” finds Barnaby and Scott investing the death of a young man in a food factor, and “Midsomer Rhapsody” involves forgery, theft, and murder surround the estate of a late composer.
In addition to memorable performances, great scripts, and first rate production values, MIDSOMER MURDERS also has an intriguing score and makes effective, often paranoia-inducing, use of prowling cameras that sometimes take the killer’s point of view. And it is the rare episode that stops at one or murders. Three is commonplace, four is not exactly unknow, and fans of the “cozy” genre may well find the series a bit too disturbing for their tastes. But if you like a good murder mystery, you’ll find it in this series. It’s immediately addictive. Strongly recommended.
GFT, Amazon Reviewer For Bill Herndon, a treasured friend
The actors are so professional you believe they really are who they play. The direction that Barnaby gives is such a welcome treat when you see the young ones in today's shows...they are not believable in their roles as they don't have the experience in life. I really enjoy this show and have watched it at least 4 times...maybe 5...this is my 5th or 6th time of viewing and I see different things each time! Love this and recommend it to all if you like good British show!
My review for all seasons of Midsomer Murders is five stars. If I could rate it higher I would. I enjoy English programs and not only are these shows entertaining murder mysteries, but the characters are likeable and its content is solving the cases not creating drama with the detectives and their families. The extra bonus one receives watching these programs is an insight into English village life and the beautiful countryside.
There are several seasons and each one is great...the characters do their job well and I really enjoy watching. Only made it to season 9 but still happy with it...if you like who dunits watch this season
I absolutely love this series for the nostalgic value, the beautiful scenery, the fully developed characters, and the plots. I think it a shame that the series ended as it did with silly accusations of racism, etc when the program was CLEARLY about a specific time period in English history. I love it and I watch it over and over-it always makes me feel great. Brian True May did a wonderful job!
My husband and I watched the Midsomer Murders series all winter long. British television is just plain better. These people are real characters and not all under 17 and shiny. My husband found it first and I would hear the theme song from upstairs. Catchy tune isn't it? Anyway wonderful wonderful wonderful, with very little gunplay or gore. I'm even getting used to the "new" guy.