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Crime TV

I’ve been on a video spree over the last mon­th or so, get­ting caught up with all three C.S.I. shows. We also fin­ished watch­ing sea­son 2 of Torch­wood, and real­ized that some of it wouldn’t make sense unless we get caught up on Dr. Who.

Annoy­ing­ly, all three C.S.I.s end­ed on cliffhang­ers. I do hate that. I would keep watch­ing next sea­son any­way, so why the tease? They’re all very well estab­lished. And one episode of C.S.I. Miami had a “spe­cial scene” that was only avail­able on the offi­cial web­site – and it isn’t there any more! What are all the view­ers who didn’t view it in real time sup­posed to do? I found a descrip­tion of the scene, but it wasn’t as good as actu­al­ly watch­ing it.

Sam is always amazed that I can watch that stuff. Hon­est­ly, the vio­lence and blood do both­er me, espe­cial­ly when there are ran­dom crimes. For some rea­son, it doesn’t both­er as much as some oth­er things, may­be because I take off my head­phones so that I don’t have to hear some sounds, and I gen­er­al­ly avoid look­ing at the bod­ies too much.

The part I like is the puz­zle, fig­ur­ing out how a crime was com­mit­ted and who did it. I know the shows are incred­i­bly unre­al­is­tic in many ways, from the fact that real crime scene inves­ti­ga­tors almost cer­tain­ly do not go run­ning around with guns to arrest crim­i­nals to the real­i­ty that nobody can be pro­fi­cient in every sin­gle type of foren­sic analy­sis that needs to be done. Actu­al foren­sic labs are almost always under­fund­ed, so get­ting evi­dence gath­ered, processed, and ana­lyzed in hours (as the shows often depict) is pure fan­ta­sy. Real foren­sic labs don’t usu­al­ly get the equip­ment they need reg­u­lar­ly, and they cer­tain­ly don’t have the lat­est and great­est toys of every sort in handy forms that every sin­gle tech can car­ry in his kit “just in case” he ever needs it at a scene.

I can sus­pend my dis­be­lief that much. And I can almost ignore the non­sense of “trac­ing an IP address to an email address” to get a criminal’s iden­ti­ty in sec­onds. It’s Hol­ly­wood.

I watched the first episode of The Closer tonight, since I’ll have to wait until fall for more C.S.I. I don’t like cop shows as much as foren­sics shows, but I was intrigued by Kyra Sedgwick’s per­for­mance in some pro­mos I saw a few years ago. Her “Atlanta accent” is atro­cious, but the char­ac­ter is inter­est­ing. I don’t know why the “big plot twist” that was obvi­ous to me in the first few min­utes of the show would take a bunch of pro­fes­sion­als days (appar­ent­ly) to fig­ure out, though. May­be they’re too gen­der-bound? Who knows.

I sup­pose that if we had cable and I hap­pened to run across The Closer, I would watch it again. I think I’ll find anoth­er foren­sics show the next time I’m bored enough to go look­ing for view­ing mat­ter, though.

4 comments

  1. Alice says:

    The part about the CSI shows that final­ly led to me giv­ing up on them was that the foren­sic peo­ple don’t inves­ti­gate the crimes, don’t inter­ro­gate peo­ple and don’t bust down doors. I also total­ly agree with you on the “I just got this cut­ting edge new gad­get” annoy­ance, too. 🙂

  2. Trisha says:

    I just fin­ished the first sea­son of Torch­wood, since I had to wait to get the DVD’s. Have you heard when sea­son 2 dvd’s will be avail­able?

  3. cyn says:

    Actu­al­ly, Alice, I can under­stand that part of the fic­tion, because it would cost so much more for them to pro­duce the shows if they real­ly showed the num­ber of peo­ple who are involved in every inves­ti­ga­tion. It would also be near­ly impos­si­ble to get view­ers to care much about any char­ac­ter if there were that many on a show.

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