Death of an Expert Witness (TV Mini-Series 1983)

TV Mini-Series   |    |  Crime, Drama, Mystery

Episode Guide
Death of an Expert Witness (1983) Poster

When Dr. Edwin Lorrimer, a forensic scientist working at a private laboratory is found killed, Detective Superintendent Adam Dalgliesh is sent to investigate. Dalgliesh had been in the area... See full summary »


Get More From IMDb

For an enhanced browsing experience, get the IMDb app on your smartphone or tablet.

Get the IMDb app

Cast & Crew

Top Series Cast

Reviews & Commentary

Add a Review

User Reviews

11 March 2015 | mkramer-693-816493
| Superb Drama and Mystery from the BBC
Nobody knows mystery and drama better than the British, and this 1983 miniseries is first-rate British drama. As a fan of BBC drama/mystery (but unfamiliar with author PD James), I was completely unaware of the plot when I first watched this, which made it all the more riveting. From the start, the viewer is plunged into an interconnecting plot with lots of clues, suspects, red herrings, forensics, and all the usual stuff that mystery lovers love!

Roy Marsden is superbly natural as detective Adam Dalgliesh, portraying a man who is both charming and hardcore (a little like Sherlock Holmes, and his assistant, played by John Vine, as a kind of Watson). The supporting cast features such familiar BBC players as Geoffrey Palmer, Brenda Blethyn (long before her Academy Award nomination), and wonderful Barry Foster (who still impresses me with his incomparable performance of Kaiser Wilhelm in Fall of Eagles). The rest of the characters are well played (ignore the reviews that say otherwise; this is British mystery, remember, and a little theatrics is expected). Since juvenile actors are never mentioned in reviews, another minor but featured supporting player is Annabelle Lanyon, a terrific child actress who appeared in a bunch of BBC shows around this time (a notable performance being the Marchioness in The Old Curiosity Shop; she is still recognized today in the cult classic arena for playing Oona the fairy in Ridley Scott's Legend).

Remember that this was filmed in the early 80s, so it is shot on video rather than film, which gives it a little less visual style. But this was true of most of the BBC shows of the time, and once the story gets moving, you forget all about camera techniques and find yourself fully engrossed in the twisting, turning plot.

A great experience for mystery and drama fans, and especially for fans of classic BBC productions, which, granted, were thin on action and technique, but big on acting, characters, dialogue, and plot!

Critic Reviews


Release Date:

8 April 1983



Country of Origin


Contribute to this page

Child Stars, Then and Now

Check out some of our favorite child stars, including Jennifer Love Hewitt and more.

See the entire gallery

What to Watch: Shows to Stream Now on Paramount +

Looking for something new to add to your Watchlist? From "Star Trek: Picard" to "Interrogation," check out our favorite stills from shows you can stream now on Paramount +.

See the full gallery

More To Explore

Search on