The third episode finds Margot firmly entrenched within the police department, although her participation is one of those "suspend disbelief" things -- sort of like believing the vicar in Grantchester solves all those murders. This plot is as convoluted as the first two, with some whopping coincidences. One of my problems (and admittedly, not the show's fault) is trying to keep up with the dialogue as I read the sub-titles, and try to keep track of the various characters. Margot seems to be having a wonderful time solving these crimes, at least, which helps viewers do the same.
It was like watching a video from a teenage girl's slumber party. Even at least one of the couples joined in the yelling-fest. Paige is personable and was often the best part of the early series, but seems to have de-matured. The rooms themselves weren't that interesting and yes, Carter's design did remind one of some of Hildy's crazier rooms. Might try another episode, but I'm tuning out if the caterwauling starts up again.
OK production values are diminished by some really outlandish plotting
-- and I don't mean the fact that you can buy books or other items from the future from a web site. I mean the complex relationships between the major characters. Such as the dead author's therapist being the romantic partner of the lead detective, whose brother is brought in to work on the case although he was initially the therapist's first love. I also thought the actress playing the sister overacted in all the early episodes, which didn't help. (The husband was close behind in that category.) In the second of the three story lines, Futmalls was an interesting plot device that was never really explored. The science fiction aspect is put on the back burner as we are shown how Meizhen's obsession with seeing her dead son (using the eye drops from the future) strains her marriage. Too much drama going on there, although the actress is mostly convincing. While the police search for the web site some of them are starting to believe does exist we're given an unneeded sidebar about a criminal selling phony Futmalls merchandise. In the final three episodes about the kidnapping of Internet "celebrities," there were too many plot holes (and as throughout the show: in a city that size how does everyone involved know one another?) The final episode dwelt too much on Nianjun and Xizhen, especially tiresome was the montage reviewing their relationship. Why a supposedly intelligent woman, who is experiencing visions of her facial scar expanding after using the face creme from the future, continues to use the creme is perplexing. Ending in a cliff-hanger where the kidnapper is revealed (although we never met him before) was a cheap way to induce people to tune in if another series is aired (unless they are too busy following Internet "celebrities."
Thoughts about No Chance To grow Up episodes (rated 4 stars)
The science fiction aspect is put on the back burner as we are shown how Meizhen's obsession with seeing her dead son (using the eye drops from the future) strains her marriage. Too much drama going on there, although the actress is mostly convincing. While the police search for the web site some of them are starting to believe does exist we're given an unneeded sidebar about a criminal selling phony Futmalls merchandise.
Thoughts about Best-Selling Writer episodes (Rated 4 stars)
OK production values are diminished by some really outlandish plot turns -- and I don't mean the fact that you can buy books published in the future from a web site. I mean the complex relationships between the major characters, Such as the dead author's therapist being the romantic partner of the lead detective, whose brother is brought in to work on the case although he was initially the therapist's first love. I also thought the actress playing the sister overacted in all her scenes, which didn't help. (The husband was close behind in that category.) An interesting plot device that was never really explored.
Different occupation for main characters (at least)
A promising story-line that got more annoying as the six episodes unfolded. I found the niece Nancy to be especially annoying and wasn't too sure the constant use of the F-word was something you really heard during that time period. The mystery is a little too drawn out and the fact that you are never shown the villain's face sort of telegraphs that it's one of the characters you've already met, so not that big a surprise. As in some outlandish plots, the whole thing could have been wrapped up if only some characters hadn't lied to or misled the police. Plus, the "Yankee" character was added for, what reason? An interesting look at Ireland in that day and the profession of photographing the dead, but all in all not that engrossing.
The premise of the show is about the man who photographs dead people -- an interesting and different subject. It's also a nice glimpse into another time in Ireland. This episode spent too much time with the niece at her party; she is not an engaging character, and most of the people at the festive occasion were people you might not want to spend an evening with. Writers should stick to the main theme.
This was all over the place, with sub-plots that were boring and unnecessary. Although I like the actress Sidse Babett Knudsen ("Madeline"), having her in this series constantly brought to mind the much better Danish political series Borgen. Some cast members were likeable but some of the plot was predictable (the death of the journalist, another reminder of a better series: House of Cards) and what's with hitting the deer, except to underscore the title. At least they didn't drag this out past four episodes.
While the lead actor Ahmed Amin is engaging, the concept and most of the six episodes in the 2020 season were poorly developed and plotted. The least intelligent and most poorly executed was The Guardian of the Cave ("King Kong in the Sahara"), but barely beat out The Naiad and Incubus for worst episode. Most interesting was a glimpse of life in Egypt of the time, but the spookiness was forced and uninspired. (One of the scariest parts was what Maggie's hairdresser did to her before shooting began.) It seems the author's books are not readily available in English, so I can't see how they compare; hard to understand how this series is rated so high if its merits are being judged.
Not familiar with the book, but didn't enjoy this, despite the casting of Imelda Staunton (in a strange role). I'm probably missing some deep message but I didn't feel like trying to really figure our what was going on. Too much Catholic claptrap, too.
The cast is mostly engaging and some of the dialogue is clever. As a Dawn French fan thanks to Vicar of Dibley, she was my reason to tune in. Her character is a little too much, though. Main issue I had with the series was the over-abundance of plots (especially the Alex and the Money one). I give the writers a nod for giving the Karen character the name "Karen."
Engaging leads cannot save this from being cringe-worthy. As Sally takes over Tim's body she/he acts more feminine than she does as a woman -- like a close-minded man's view of a gay man. And it's hard to get past the voices -- knowing it's a total fantasy, why would the physical body of Tim talk with Sally's voice and vice versa. Might have played with 1940's audiences, but tastes and mores have evolved since then.
Show ran its course (well before the final season)
Mostly enjoyable to watch the various characters age and mature (mostly), but some of them grew tiresome long before their story arc ended. The last episodes were a poor finale, with the laborious stories about Harrison and Ted and the women Ted met in Hong Kong being gratuitous and taking away from time that could have been spent on characters who we went along the ride with for years and whose story-lines were rushed and unsatisfactory. Too much John (and Judith!) as well; and another season of watching Celia devolve into a harpy would have been too painful. Rest in Peace.
Final entry shows how tired the whole enterprise had become. While I applaud the production designers on finding suitable era cars, trains and buildings, the plot to this was preposterous (especially that two marriages would result from a long weekend in the hideaway country estate.) Davison was a pleasant Campion but ill-served by the story lines (and Lugg became quickly tiresome.)
Having read the book shortly before watching this teleplay, I was surprised at how close to the novel it stayed. One exception was the omission of a major character, who was also a character in the earlier show, Police At The Funeral ("Uncle" William Faraday, who is the catalyst for Campion to get involved in the Sutane clan.) Some of this character's observations were transferred to others, but with little consequence. Although the ending and unmasking of the murderer was the same, there was an unnecessary explosive ending that didn't happen in the book. P.S. Too much singing and dancing.
While Part One was mildly entertaining and set up a mystery revolving around a disputed claim to an earldom, and throws in some riddles to decipher in order to find a crown with disappearing blood stones, a drum that needs to be striken, and a marriage certificate that disappeared years before. But the second half was fairly nonsensical. Campion takes a cue from Sherlock Holmes in The Hound of the Baskervilles by returning to the scene in disguise as his cohorts continue to unravel the mystery. The whole episode with the doctor and his devil worship seemed forced and added nothing to the story. And the plot about Savernake and his henchmen was equally comical, although unintentionally I expect. Not having read Allingham's original story I can't say who is responsible for all these non-working parts.
Except for the long, drawn-out ending where Campion once again drinks something he's pretty sure is tainted and afterwards becomes inebriated, this and part one were entertaining. However, the interview with the Italian widow stopped the narrative cold for me. Mainly because she was doing an almost spot-on imitation of Roseanne Rosannadana. Nice tribute to Gilda Radner if that's what the director intended.
I'm not messy unless you count dog hair everywhere, but watching a few minutes of this spurs me into looking for stuff to discard; so in that way the show serves a purpose. But if I wanted to listen to people recount their childhood traumas I'd watch Dr. Phil (which I refuse to do.)
With the Covid19 pandemic in full swing as this shows up on Netflix, the similarities between fact and fiction are striking. The first episode introduces the main players, but it's hard to care when half of them are disagreeable and would be no loss to the world (the boorish neighbor and his alcoholic daughter for sure.)
Truly poor writing and plotting in a most tiresome episode. Originally I began watching due to cast (especially Nicola Walker) and kept at it for somewhat endearing characters (although Gillian is a complete mess and Celia a bigoted biddy.) This episode was hard to sit through with all the climatic confessions, the silly flat tire (why do people not watch the road?), and one last groaner of seeing Caroline interact with Kate. No where to go but up at this point.
But some pretty poor plotting. The inspector (who fled the island 20 years before) shows very little concern for the crime scene, letting the crime-scene cleaner he brings with him free reign over the house on her own. As it turns out she has a link to the island in her own past, but you really have to suspend disbelief a whole lot to swallow that reveal (like a six-year old child wouldn't remember her own mother?) There are some continuity issues as well -- supposedly cut off from the mainland by a storm, some scenic views show perfectly calm waters and sun drenched skies. That's just lazy film-making. Oh, and a day after the crime they find the victim's dog locked in a room, then take it to the detective's mother's house and lock it in another room for the night without food or water. That's the real crime in this story.
Some of the scenery is interesting as the peek at cheese making, but the tangled web of relationships among the locals is too convoluted to make sense of. I kept waiting for a car crash since everyone seems to race around the narrow country roads at breakneck speeds. The Deputy Prosecutor comes off as a insecure harridan at first and the immediate antagonistic behavior of her and the local investigator is off-putting. (And why she has to bring her son's cat with her is probably a bigger mystery than the one she's trying to solve.)
An entertaining outing with clever repartee between detectives, and even some suspects. The writers must have enjoyed the sessions creating it, and the production designers went all out on the steampunk theme. Only drawback is the choice of songs played over some of the scenes. A fun time (oh, and the model train enthusiast being named "Lionel?")