Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Aloha to the Inspector Lynley Mysteries series - DVD Review

Image result for inspector lynley mysteries

I recently enjoyed 24 episodes of The Inspector Lynley Mysteries series.  From Wikipedia,

The Inspector Lynley Mysteries is a British crime drama, broadcast on BBC One from 12 March 2001 to 1 June 2008, encompassing six series and a total of twenty-three episodes. The protagonist, Detective Inspector Thomas "Tommy" Lynley, 8th Earl of Asherton (Nathaniel Parker), who is assigned to Scotland Yard, finds himself paired with Detective Sergeant Barbara Havers (Sharon Small). In addition to the tensions involved in solving murder cases, the series thrives on the characters' clashes regarding personality, gender, and class, as Lynley is dapper, male and a peer of the realm, while Havers is untidy, female and comes from a working-class background.

Based on the books from American writer Elizabeth George, the series delivers an engaging story for 80 minutes with no commercial interruptions.  The series was produced by BBC, then rebroadcast on PBS as part of "Masterpiece Theater". The first few DVDs include iconic English actress Dame Diana Rigg introducing the author, series, and episode, noting the challenges George - an an American writer - overcame to find an audience of a British mystery series. Later episodes are introduced by Scottish actor Alan Cumming.  These introductions provide an extra element of "quality television" American audiences have come to expect from BBC and PBS.

Like most BBC productions, the story telling required 100 percent of my attention focused on the unfolding plot.  Turn away for one moment and the viewer might miss a subtle clue. Likewise, the British accents with regional dialects can be a challenge for American ears.  But this only adds to the authenticity of the series.

The series spotlights the ongoing class struggle in British society; the economic challenges of city living; the isolation of farming; and the social struggles of a migrating population within the British Empire.  The producers do not spare the protagonists - the series reveals their emotional baggage, too. Over time, Asherton appreciates Havers who is otherwise dismissed by her sexist peers. In turn, Havers sees beyond Asherton's "stiff upper lip" to find a vulnerable man.  The series ends with them having a mutual respect as colleagues and friends.

The series was filmed between 2001 - 2008, so plot's technology is dated.  Yet murder is timeless ... along with the allure of the British life.  An added bonus - beloved British actors make guest appearances as supporting characters.  At least three popular Downtown Abbey actors (Brendan Coyle, Bates; Phyllis Logan, Mrs. Hughes; Samantha Bond, Lady Rosamund) and Superman (Henry Cavill), appear as supporting characters. Then again, this is the beauty of BBC productions - it draws from a smaller pool of British actors who are not perfect in appearance but spot on in performance.

Asherton drives to crime scenes, including country roads,
in his vintage Bristol 410

For the month of April, I am giving away a box of books from authors attending RT. To enter the giveaway,

1. Let's chat about vintage cars - do you have a favorite?  I love the "Woody" surf car! 

2. Comments are open through Sunday, April 30, 10 pm in Baltimore.

3. I will be offline from Monday, May 1 - Sunday, May 7.

4. I'll post the winner on Sunday, May 8.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City


  1. Don't have a favorite vintage car.
    PattyB 43

  2. Don't know much about vintage cars, but always loved the ones James Bond drives like Aston Martin and Jaguar models.

  3. I don't anything about vintage cars, so really do not have any favorites.

  4. I'm not into cars at all. Having said that I saw a picture of a Ghost Rolls a while ago. It was stunning. I think I got the name right.

  5. I like the old Beetle. They are classic.

  6. I'm not a car enthusiast, but usually donate my time at our local Arthritis Foundation's Classic Car Show each July.

  7. I never had a license or driven but I find the 1940's Tucker an awesome looking car along with the 70's Jaguar. :)
    Carol L
    Lucjy4750 (at) aol (dot) com

  8. Not really but I call my Honda vintage since it's a 1993 lol.

  9. Not into Vintage cars, sorry.
    Natty's Mama.

  10. I adore the earliest of ones - the Model T! I might have to look up this show!

  11. A British roadster would be wonderful. We have a 1972 Land Rover, think Hatari staring John Wayne. It is a great vehicle and we own it. I doubt I will ever do more than see a roadster.

  12. I always like the early MG's - looked like a fun car to drive on country roads.