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Midsomer Murders

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But Acorn didn't have series 3 of Vera. I had to get those on DVD from Netflix.  I'm really enjoying Brokenwood Mysteries, too. Wow, that New Zealand accent is weird. 'Best' and 'beast' rhyme. I'm getting used to it and I wonder if I moved there, how long would it take me, or would I ever, adopt that accent.

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I'm trying to finish out the series on Netflix. I hope BritBox doesn't pull it before then! I was so sad to have lost some of my other Brit shows to BritBox. I guess I'll have to watch it faster just in case! They used to show it on my local PBS channel but sadly that ended a few years ago. 

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I've watched a lot of them randomly on PBS. I'd like to hear opinions on wackiest motives for murder.  

My pick is from Season 13. A husband, whose wife died, murders a man because the man blocked the husband  from burying his wife in the local, historical cemetery. So he had to bury his wife in Causton "halfway across the county". 

Any othercontenders for wackiest motive?

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On ‎2‎/‎18‎/‎2015 at 11:07 AM, Zahdii said:

I'm also watching through Netflix, and I saw those episodes not too long ago.  I'm not certain we get all of the episodes that were filmed.  Anyway, the best thing to do is assume that Cully's boyfriend moved on to bigger and better things, and Cully is always switching jobs, and Gavin is someone she has a mild on and off again relationship with in the meantime.  Not the best answer, but the only one I could come up with when I also noticed things had changed and I didn't know why or how.

I am binge watching on Netflix. I'm on series 6, I think and the new guy replacing Troy has just been introduced. I loved Troy. I also wondered about Cully's theatrical career turned into mobile librarian. I guess it allows her to move around and happen to be where they are investigating a murder. Either she "happens" to be in the neighborhood or she must be a suspect. LOL.

When I started this binge, I did not notice how long it has lasted. I have a ways to go.

By the way...I have this awful habit of watching late at night in bed and I often fall asleep. A few nights ago I awakened to the bell ringer episode mentioned above. Needless to say, it was quite an awakening. Can we say LOUD. The bell ringing went on and on. I never finished the episode because it was so annoying.

(Injecting some movement into the thread). 

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I just finished Series 7 Episode 1 "the Green Man". Troy was promoted and this is his last episode. A nomad, woodsy man is accused of murder. Friends of the murdered boy find his camp in the woods and wind up shooting his pet fox. He didn't do it, of course. Long story short, after all is said and done he is cleared and in the next to last scene he is back in the woods falling asleep by the campfire. Out from the trees come a mommy fox with her two babies and they curl up around the campfire with him. Loved it.

And the last scene is Troy's farewell to Barnaby.

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Hey @Ina123 I think we are on the about the same watching schedule cause I just watched that one! I'll be happy to discuss these with you because NO ONE I KNOW WATCHES THIS SHOW! lol. I need some Midsomer to distract me from the world, despite the fact that there are a gazillion murders! I was tempted to google the population of Midsomer to figure out if there are even any people left after all the killing! 

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Series 7 Episode 2 - "Bad Tidings" - I got through the one where we are introduced to DS Scott. Focused on Cully and her friends from I guess high school and her desire to reconnect with them even though she hasn't seen nor talked to any of them since literally the day they graduated. I thought that was bizarre but I understand the sentiment. It seems that Cully doesn't have a lot going on in her life. Her acting has trickled to nothing, she's working (volunteering?) at some mobile library. I can see her being interested in going back to the beginning with her friends. What I can't understand is how big the county (is that the right term) of Midsomer even is? How did she lose touch with these friends? She still goes to her parents' house and seemed to live there up until recently. No one of the friends had moved, so how was it that she was just finding them now? 

These villages seem shockingly small - I'm a city girl through and through! I can appreciate the quiet of the country but only for a weekend! How would they not have bumped into each other in "town" or in the "village"? Besides, I'd be terrified of being murdered at this point and they are shockingly lacking in even a whiff of color of any kind (aka diversity). I read that eventually became an issue but we are still in Series 7.  DS Troy got on my nerves a lot cause he was so judgemental but he did seem to improve over time. We shall see how DS Scott fares, I have no real impression of him yet.  I was surprised that I figured out the "mystery" and who the murderer was as early as I did. That's never happened before! 

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6 hours ago, Prevailing Wind said:

He's SO much worse in the books! I couldn't stand him.

Seriously? Wow! I've not read the books, I don't know that I'd be able to get through them with that.

Some of the things that he said were insanely sexist, ageist, homophobic or any combination of these. 

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In the books, you get to read his internal dialogue & he's SO ignorant and almost proud of it, thinks his wife's a cow, learns some of the words Barnaby uses by looking them up in his baby daughter's dictionary. Bigoted doesn't being to describe him. I almost stopped reading because he's such an ugly personality.

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One thing that really disturbs me ironically isn't the murders, it's the way they show people kiss on the show! Have none of them every kissed a person before. IT's some frantic, weird lip crushing, face smashing against each other thing. Just finished watching Series 8, Episode 1 "Things That Go Bump in the Night" and one of the flashback scenes is the murder victims wife frenetically making out with some old guy. Did I really need to see his bare butt? No, I did not, but thanks for that show! 

Seriously I hope they hired someone to work on those "romantic" scenes!  

I do appreciate that the actors look like “real” people, in that they aren’t all glammed up and they aren’t all the most gorgeous people in the world. They are regular looking people.

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After talking about how the actors mostly appear to be regular looking people, the next episode has Owain Yeoman who was in the Mentalist and Turn (playing Benedict Arnold) and I find him so very attractive. He was especially hot here. Woo! He's probably the man I've found the most attractive so far in the series, and that includes the episodes with Orlando Bloom (yawn, he was dull and not cute in the least) and Henry Cavill (who was totally unrecognizable to me. This was the man who made my knees buckle when I saw him in The Tudors, but not since).

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On 3/15/2018 at 2:14 PM, Ina123 said:

 

By the way...I have this awful habit of watching late at night in bed and I often fall asleep. A few nights ago I awakened to the bell ringer episode mentioned above. Needless to say, it was quite an awakening. Can we say LOUD. The bell ringing went on and on. I never finished the episode because it was so annoying.

 

I have the same habit and still carry mental scars from being jolted awake by the bell ringers!

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While I have little interest in Joyce or Cully, I admit they do provide color and shading. I watched an episode last night and was impressed (again) by Joyce's wardrobe ...  age appropriate, unfussy and great use of color -- and also her unchanging but perfect haircut.  Without Cully, the show would have have to stretch even harder to create stories involving anyone under 40 or even 50 years of age, and also young and struggling .... Many of Midsomer's towns (hamlets?) appear to be wealthy, stuffy and snobby retirement villages. Cully's ever changing career aspirations and hair styles and boyfriends (then lovers) also helps place stories and the series in time without being too loud about it (Endeavor and George Gently are very clearly deeply rooted and all-about social changes of the 1960's in contrast) 

 

I also don't care about the dog ... and like some side-kicks better than other ... and yet again without these peripheral characters it would be Tom Barnaby's world and the world according to Tom Barnaby.  I do like that none of them are overwhelming intrusive or particularly loathsome (although I was amused by George Gently's loathsome idiot sidekick John Bacchus in small doses) 

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I was just watching Doc Martin and in the 8th series there are two or three episodes where there's another dog that shows up to irritate Doc Martin. In watching the "Behind the Scenes" thing, they reveal that it IS Paddy, who also works on Midsomer.  Dog's name really is Paddy.

After watching the John Barnaby shows, and going back to Tom, I'm impressed by Joyce's willingness to participate in all sorts of goofy community events; the only thing we've ever seen Sarah Barnaby participate in is being a spectator at a cricket game. OK, I'll grant with a job and a baby, it's not easy for her to get to art classes or choir practice, but it just underlines, for me, how much I liked Joyce.

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I think how you feel about Joyce depends on when in the show you started watching.  My memory (no idea which season) is that she kept being on-the-spot or too-close-for-comfort to the crime in the first shows I recall with an excess of wifely complaints that Tom's late for dinner or pulled away from the dinner table, late for the party, forgot my birthday,  etc.  Cully also seems too often unnaturally too-close to too many suspects.  Then the writers moved away from that. 

It is funny how much the writing changes from year to year (true of many shows).  I'm not crazy about the ye-olde-and-strange English countryfolk (bumpkins) stories particularly those involving druids and secret societies, etc., mostly because those stories have appeared often in other series and are often enlivened by making them more outlandish or arcane, sort of a cheap plot device. 

eta:  Just remembered that in the first seasons (that I remember) there was an ongoing joke about what an obliviously terrible cook Joyce was, something Cully and Tom laughed at behind her back. Wince inducing.

Edited by SusanSunflower
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On ‎3‎/‎17‎/‎2018 at 9:48 PM, msani19 said:

Series 7 Episode 2 - "Bad Tidings" - I got through the one where we are introduced to DS Scott. Focused on Cully and her friends from I guess high school and her desire to reconnect with them even though she hasn't seen nor talked to any of them since literally the day they graduated. I thought that was bizarre but I understand the sentiment. It seems that Cully doesn't have a lot going on in her life. Her acting has trickled to nothing, she's working (volunteering?) at some mobile library. I can see her being interested in going back to the beginning with her friends. What I can't understand is how big the county (is that the right term) of Midsomer even is? How did she lose touch with these friends? She still goes to her parents' house and seemed to live there up until recently. No one of the friends had moved, so how was it that she was just finding them now? 

These villages seem shockingly small - I'm a city girl through and through! I can appreciate the quiet of the country but only for a weekend! How would they not have bumped into each other in "town" or in the "village"? Besides, I'd be terrified of being murdered at this point and they are shockingly lacking in even a whiff of color of any kind (aka diversity). I read that eventually became an issue but we are still in Series 7.  DS Troy got on my nerves a lot cause he was so judgemental but he did seem to improve over time. We shall see how DS Scott fares, I have no real impression of him yet.  I was surprised that I figured out the "mystery" and who the murderer was as early as I did. That's never happened before! 

LOL. I had the same impression of that episode. They all lived in the same area but had not even bumped into each other in all those years? Especially since the Barnaby's seem to attend every carnival, fair, festival, etc., in the area and there seems to be one every weekend.

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eta:  Just remembered that in the first seasons (that I remember) there was an ongoing joke about what an obliviously terrible cook Joyce was, something Cully and Tom laughed at behind her back. Wince inducing.

That was a feature of the novels and it was carried to a much greater extreme. Besides Troy being completely loathsome, Joyce could mess up *anything* in the kitchen, so I found it less wince-inducing in the show.

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On 7/27/2017 at 7:26 PM, VMepicgrl said:

I know this was posted quite awhile back, but I'm just reading now. I think I know which episode you are talking about. Someone had posted after you thinking it was the 3 siblings as adults who killed people, but I don't think you meant that one. Were you thinking of the one where it showed them as actual little kids playing around in the forest and near water, along with the "dorky" kid? And while showing off, the one kid held the dorky kid under water and it seemed like he killed him. So they threw him down a well? I think that's what happened. That one really creeped me out. I didn't like it. It left a really bad taste with me.

I refuse to watch this episode anymore, if I'm going through my dvds I will skip this one, I couldn't sleep well for a week after the last time I watched it. I do think the series (the Tom ones) were very creative in it's use of children. There were not only the 3 psycho siblings whose mother was a psychiatrist but the woman who had killed her housekeeper when a child. But not only the killers there were also the little girl and her brother that investigated the dogs in one episode, I loved her.

I do like Joyce and having retired understand her need to fill up her days with something. Finding murders at all of those 'somethings' is a little much but it was the same for Jessica Fletcher and her friends. I thought she was almost always understanding of Tom disappearing or appearing late, and I can only think of once where she displayed jealousy of any kind. She seemed mostly resigned, I do remember Cully being more upset about Tom canceling things or being late. In fact I love the episode where Tom and Scott are locked in a wine cellar with fake wine and Tom is fretting about Joyce worrying about him when in fact she was partying all night and didn't realize he was gone! lol.

Would those of you who are watching the new episodes, the ones with John Barnaby be on the lookout for the many, many set changes I noted while watching the first two or three series with him? I swear every time they showed him at the station the set was changed! different layout, different desks, different shelves, sometimes cubicles sometimes walls. After a while it became distracting because I was focusing on that, what kind of police have the money to redecorate monthly? And shouldn't a Detective Chief Inspector have his own office? I know Vera does but I don't know much about British police practices.

Edited by dgpolo · Reason: to add more thoughts

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On 4/4/2018 at 6:10 AM, Prevailing Wind said:

Tom had his own office, too. And was in it a lot more than John is at the station

I can't remember a single time either were in their own office, can you give me an episode title? I'm going to be watching my dvds again soon so I'll keep my eye out. I don't have the John ones on dvd though, but I'm pretty sure the ones I did see he was only ever in the communal office that housed everyone. (Same with Tom)

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Can't recall an episode, but I see Tom in there, window at his back, sidekick bringing in tea, while he's looking through reports/documents.  I don't think I dreamed that.

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I'm starting my rewatch now, I keep an eye out for offices. As I said it's the John ones that really bother me, it seems like a re-decoration every episode.

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I've watched the first five eps and the office Tom is in is shared with Troy and at least one other person (they are typing in one ep), already the room has changed. First there is a map at Tom's back, then they pivot the desks, (his and Troy's are pushed together so when they are both sitting they are facing each other), and there is a window behind him. But the door moves also. Sorry to be so anal about this, but when you've seen the show 20+ times you just (or I just) start noticing things like this.

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Just completed Season 1 and was definitely impressed by a young Stephen Moyer. He never did much for me as Bill in True Blood.

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Another thing I'd noticed before and am noticing again on this viewing, is how many people just stand there and wait to die! Like the Orland Bloom one, he opens the door, sees the pitchfork (not a scythe) and stands there waiting to be skewered.

And the one where the lady is out with the dog, and the housekeeper walks up with a cricket bat.

And the one I'm watching now where the man opens his liquor cabinet and it starts shaking and he stands there staring at it until it falls on him!

Move people! Scream, run, do something!

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On 3/7/2018 at 4:14 PM, novhappy said:

Any othercontenders for wackiest motive?

Just finished watching Tainted Fruit where the woman kills three people to keep her drunk driving a secret so she can get on some high society committee.

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On 11/1/2014 at 4:09 PM, Featherhat said:

Wasn't there death by church bells? Or certainly murder because of a bell ringing competition. That was my favourite.

Sorry about the multiple posts, as I've said I'm rewatching my dvds and I thought it would be better to try to keep different subjects separate. If the mods could let me know if I should just be adding to previous posts I'll do that instead.

Just finished the Ring Out Your Dead ep and no one was killed by the bells (for that look at Dorothy Sayer's Nine Tailors) or because of the competition, but because the psycho (Mme. Pomphrey from HP) had an ancestor killed by the bell ringers of the church so started killing off the present day bell ringers! Presumably to stop the bad luck her family has had.

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6 hours ago, dgpolo said:

for that look at Dorothy Sayer's Nine Tailors

Always nice to see her mentioned.  And sadly missed for a too short writing career.

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On 3/17/2018 at 6:41 PM, Ina123 said:

Long story short, after all is said and done he is cleared and in the next to last scene he is back in the woods falling asleep by the campfire. Out from the trees come a mommy fox with her two babies and they curl up around the campfire with him. Loved it.

I like watching Midsomer Murders but confess they are like a "meringue" to me - sweet and light and enjoyable, but melt very quickly and I have a hard time remembering all the details. But I vividly remember that ending because I found it so touching. Esp because I was traumatized when the bully killed the fox earlier in the episode, the guy's best friend.

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This series is so breathtakingly uneven ... a truly terrible (in terms of what real people might ever ever do) with periodic extreme violence/gore rubbing shoulders with quite reasonable mysteries.  A few seasons seemed to have painful themes (the mysteries of country bumpkins and odd-ones) and then others that are very good, even complex with straining credibility beyond all measure.  My personal irritation is the bland as milquetoast (often older) character who kills 3 or 4 people to conceal a "secret" ... usually over days and without seeming even a little bit "off" ... and usually without any suggestion of mental illness or dementia.  Like some boggling "reality true crime" 

Edited by SusanSunflower
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I'm in season (series) 15 and I'm finally used to the cousin Barnaby. I still like the show but I'm a bit put off by now with Ben being the butt of seemingly "witty" jokes. He comes up with possible motives and is shot down every time. He needs to be given a break. How could he make DS if he is a complete idiot? I'm tired of him always being the stooge.

On another note, I love Sykes. The episode I watched tonight was about horror movies. The Barnabys were watching one that was related to the ongoing investigation. Sikes was on her lap with his head beneath a pillow. She said, "Ok, Sikes, that scary scene is over," and he pops his head up. Just cute.

Edited by Ina123
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On 4/17/2018 at 12:46 PM, Mumbles said:

I like watching Midsomer Murders but confess they are like a "meringue" to me - sweet and light and enjoyable, but melt very quickly and I have a hard time remembering all the details. But I vividly remember that ending because I found it so touching. Esp because I was traumatized when the bully killed the fox earlier in the episode, the guy's best friend.

Just watched that episode last night.  I was upset as well when he killed the fox.

Today I saw the episode where Cully wants to reunite with her old school friends.  For a cop’s daughter, she is very naive.

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On ‎4‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 1:59 PM, dgpolo said:

I can't remember a single time either were in their own office, can you give me an episode title? I'm going to be watching my dvds again soon so I'll keep my eye out. I don't have the John ones on dvd though, but I'm pretty sure the ones I did see he was only ever in the communal office that housed everyone. (Same with Tom)

Watching all of the eps for the first time - I just finished the one where the kid climbs out of the well.  Freaky!!  But no office as of yet - there is a long glass partition along side Barnaby's desk.  Jones has a desk across from him and I think Stephens has one nearby as well.

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9 hours ago, scorpio1031 said:

But no office as of yet

I'm up to 'Orchis Fatalis' (watching was interrupted by having to babysit grandkids). So far Tom has his own office in exactly 1 episode! It was in 'Painted in Blood', the one where Joyce is trying her hand at painting and the crooked cops that lure Troy away for a short time. I think the office was built for the scene where Tom comes in and catches the two crooked cops in it. It is very odd, because in the episodes before and after this episode you can see an office with a glass wall and partially glass door (sort of like Sandra's in New Tricks or Vera's) at the back of the common office, but Tom never goes in there. And when he has that scene in his office the door (with his name on it, even!) is solid wood, and the wall that should be facing the common office is solid too, no windows. And after those few episodes even that office disappears and Tom is back at a desk in the common office near Scott. Very strange!

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Our local PBS channel is running Season 13 now, and something is quite odd about the camera work. It's offputting but hard to describe - the depth of field or the lighting seems unnatural in the same way as daytime soap operas. Cheaper cameras? Has anyone noticed this?

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1 hour ago, fauntleroy said:

Our local PBS channel is running Season 13 now, and something is quite odd about the camera work. It's offputting but hard to describe - the depth of field or the lighting seems unnatural in the same way as daytime soap operas. Cheaper cameras? Has anyone noticed this?

I'm watching these episodes for the first time on Netflix and I happened to catch an episode on PBS.  It was quite a difference in the filming.

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How weird/funny is this? I was watching 20.4 yesterday afternoon (NO spoilers ahead) and in one scene, Barnaby & Winter are sitting at a table in a pub, discussing the case. Behind Barnaby is an enormous clock, hands pointed to 1:30.  I looked over at my enormous clock and it read 1:30.  I missed the next few lines of dialogue, pondering the coincidence of such a happening.

I'm a bit disappointed that the "season" is only 6 episodes long and (may or may not be a spoiler ahead...)

Spoiler

while I had read that Tom B. shows up in one of 'em, he didn't. (I don't think that's really a spoiler - it's a warning not to get too excited waiting for him to show.)

I really like the new ME.

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I am on 20.5. I don't know. I am not amused by this season, but season 19 did not do much for me either. And I don't like Winter.

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I miss Tom B. all the time. Do not care for John or Sarah or how she seems to be woven into so many of the cases like a sidekick almost. And John is far more condescending even than Tom with his DS’s, rude even. Tom had a twinkle in his eye when he made them chase down suspects through hedges and brooks. The latest episodes are not nearly as interesting as the earlier seasons. I know they had to add diversity but now the crimes are not as interesting, nor are the supporting characters. But I like the scenery and villages so I watch anyway but do not look forward to them as much.

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Not wild about season 20...and just can’t take John Barnaby. Not liking this DS as much as the old ones. Scott, Ben and Troy were my favs. John is insufferable and pompous...not crazy about Sarah either lol...but like the dog.

Edited by Bebecat
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I just reached the season with new DCI John Barnaby and I'm trying to get a sense of him. I haven't warmed up to him quite yet. There's something about the way he carries himself, somewhat aloof, above-it-all, knows everything already. I suppose insufferable and pompous might be the way to describe it! Although I'm not yet at season 20, so it probably just gets worse. 

I've noticed that Sarah and John are more physically affectionate with each other than Tom and Joyce were. Although we all knew that Tom and Joyce absolutely adored each other and were very happy with their lives. 

I do miss DCI Tom Barnaby!

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5 minutes ago, msani19 said:

There's something about the way he carries himself, somewhat aloof, above-it-all, knows everything already.

I think you hit it with 'aloof', he seemed a bit too quiet and self contained. I think Neil Dudgeon was hampered by having played other characters in the series so he couldn't evoke those characterizations and he couldn't be too much like Tom. So he came up with this, but it's not very engaging. And I didn't like the way so many of his episodes ended with a face to face with the killer where he calls on his Psychology degree to talk the bad guy down.

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I was on medical leave so I was able to watch all of the Tom Barnaby episodes within a few weeks.  Now, I'm watching the John Barnaby episodes.  A lot of the earlier eps gave you clues to who did it, and Tom would figure it out and then go to arrest the murderer.  John, on the other hand, happens to usually find the murderer in the middle of a crime and then, like @dgpolo said above, uses his Psychology degree, which is so boring.

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