20 March 2005 | djquigley
Good Old-Fashioned Murder Mystery
Overview: Remember those 1970s Sunday night murder mysteries: McMillan and Wife, McCloud and Columbo? Well, I believe the McBride series is an attempt to hearken back to these. A murder gets committed and its up to the viewer to try to figure out who did it as McBride tries to solve the case.
McBride, ably portrayed by John Larroquette, is a lawyer who seems semi-retired and is associated with a detective squad and police work. There is no gritty realism a la NYPD Blue, but something more akin to Dick Van Dyke's medical doctor detective series, though not quite so campy.
Plot Synopsis: The scenario for this show is Nebraska girl in big nasty L.A. for a day mistakenly gets sent out on call-girl duty when all she thought was that she was an escort for the night. She goes back to confront the Madam who sent her on assignment and finds the woman murdered. She is caught at the scene by a policeman, arrested, and McBride is persuaded to take her case for the defense. It is up to McBride and the viewers to solve the murder.
Concluding Overall Remarks: If the 1970s series appealed to you, this McBride series will appeal as well. It's well written and good early prime time fare -- no gratuitous violence, some courtroom drama, and the denouement at the end, this time told with some artistic flair that as an aspiring director myself I had to appreciate. The artistic effort and slip from realism seemed a little at odds with the otherwise straightforward fare, but I appreciated the effort. If the director and crew had told the rest of the story with the same originality and flare, I might be persuaded to move my score up a notch or two. All in all, good solid entertainment - 7 out of 10.