12 February 2008 | sonnyschlaegel
It's easy to see why this one was canceled, but...
... it's also hard to see why it was canceled. As far as I can tell, it is not worse than other (much longer running) German crime series, so I wonder why the ratings were so low that it was canceled. They showed only nine of the thirteen episodes that were made.
The basic idea was to show the work of a special unit of the Berlin police force that is called in when there are emergencies like hostage-takings or bomb threats; there's always a race against the clock, that's why they called the series 'Deadline - Every Second Counts'. I first thought this concept would make the episodes very repetitive, but I think that that is not the case. The problem lies elsewhere...
... I said that it's not worse than other German crime series - but it's not better either. Like in so many other of these series, the stories are too full of clichés, and the plots have too many holes (at least to my view). Here are some examples: 1) Episode 1.4 'Nacht ohne Morgen': when they have found out the name of the man who is in danger, but don't know which hotel he is at - why don't they frantically start calling as many hotels as possible? There's not much time left, but there would still be a chance of finding the right hotel and saving that man. However, all they do is sit around in despair, waiting for another clue that might never come. 2) Episode 1.5 'Doppelspiel': one of the episodes I liked best - but it also has the worst goof of the series. There's a time bomb. Matthias phones Birger and tells him that there are only about 40 seconds left before the bomb will go off (Birger is in the room where the bomb is hidden). And what does Birger do? Instead of running for his life (which any reasonably sane man would do), he decides to try to find - and defuse! - the bomb in that short a time. I won't tell you if he survives since I don't want to spoil it in case you plan to watch it. But I must mention one other thing: they often show a clock counting down. (Not just in this episode; it's really the device that the makers use most often since the main characters always have to race against the clock.) They want to create suspense, but in this case it's very ridiculous: at the beginning of the passage I've mentioned, the clock shows 45 seconds left - but it takes about 1 minute and 40 seconds till the bomb goes off! And I'm not talking about a faulty bomb here - it's really a very bad goof.
I could go on like this for a long time. There are huge goofs in almost every episode, especially character errors that are so blatant they deserve to be called plot holes. (The investigators are portrayed as being intelligent enough to outsmart the delinquents but then they sometimes act like total morons. In other words: The investigators' intelligence is an important basis for the plot, but then the script writers don't seem to care about it any longer.)
On the plus side: good production values, I liked most of the actors, and some episodes managed to create suspense. But in my opinion, they should have saved lots of the money that was spent for the good production values and should have given it to script doctors instead.