29 May 2002 | Fractalizer
I Grew up with this Series
When I was a boy, before cable and satellite TV, we had only five TV stations to choose from. One of the highlights on TV every week was the "Freitagskrimi" - every Friday an episode of one out of four or five different crime series was shown (they were rotating those series), and none of them created the kind of cult following that Derrick did.
Derrick is set in Munich. I live in Munich, and I totally love this town. Watching Stephan and Harry cruising on Maximilianstrasse in their BMW is just cool! There's also this cliche about the rich and famous that lends Munich a certain kind of air and as Derrick is usually investigating in these circles you get to see all the villas, expensive cars and champaign guzzling wives of wealthy manager types. In fact this is sometimes so over the top that it can only be a satirical stab at the Munich "Schicki Micki" society (Munich's "important" people).
Anyway, a lot more sets this series apart from standard murder mystery fare. There is a very distinct cold, claustrophobic atmosphere that make a Derrick episode immediately recognizable when you're zapping through the channels even if none of the two main protagonists are present in the scene. This perfectly matches Derrick's highly analytical method of crime solving.
There's also the great chemistry between Derrick and his sidekick Harry. Many episodes have them sitting face to face in their office, which is then typically only illuminated by a dim desk lamp, replaying the statements of those interrogated, uncovering contradictions and pinning down a possible suspect.
Well, I'm not surprised that 281 murderers failed to get away with their crime before Derrick retired. Now matter how good you think your alibi is or how well you can keep your cool - you won't withstand this man's piercing eyes and sharp mind!
Whenever I catch an episode on German TV (there's almost always some station airing the series) I watch it. The series was sold internationally to stations in more than 100 countries so there's good chance you might be able to see it sometime. Try it if you're in the mood for something slightly different!