Doc On The Box – Death In Paradise Series 6, Episode 1

DI Humphrey Goodman has finally found love, or something close to it. But on the day that his sort-of girlfriend is due to arrive on Saint-Marie, he and his team are called to a dead body halfway up a volcano. An eminent volcanologist climbed there to check what the problem was with a remote quake detector – only to apparently die of an heart attack.

death-in-paradise-season-6

But Humphrey isn’t satisfied – the volcanologist climbed the volcano in the dark, only no torch was found on the body. But when every person with a motive was either locked into the research base or on a different island, and with no hint of the method of murder, can Humphrey find a murderer and have a successful date with his girlfriend?

Series Six of my favourite TV series kicked off on Thursday. You know, the series that the newspapers are ridiculously snotty about – according to the Times last Saturday, the only reason people watch it is for some sunshine in the winter. So not for the charming cast, the witty script, the clever plotting and being probably the only murder-mystery series on television that is a whodunit and isn’t a game of pin-the-tail-on-the-murderer (I’m looking at you, Midsomer Murders).

But, as with previous years, this is a little game that I play with series creator. Eight episodes, how many can I work out before the reveal? Well, it’s definitely 1-0 to Rob Thorogood, but…

… I’ll be honest, I’m a bit divided on the plot with this one. While the method for murder was ingenious, and the alibi was clever (I did work out that bit, generally), it did feel like the mechanics were worked out and then the identity of the killer was chosen to fit that method, because I didn’t really buy that bit. I have to be a little vague about that bit, as I can’t really go into my issues with it without spoilers, but it seemed that the impossibility defined the murderers rather than vice versa.

But regardless, it was a lot of fun, with plenty of added Don Warrington for bonus laughs. So while it might not have been the best mystery the show has done, it was still great to see it back on the television. Here’s to the next seven episodes!

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17 comments

  1. I always enjoy Death in Paradise, but this felt like it could do with another draft to do justice to the ideas.

    We got the solution early on, but then discarded it because it directly contradicts the scenes where the body is discovered, which is unusually slapdash for this show, especially as there would have been lots of easy ways to make that clever.

    Also why were all those vials just open on the desk, other than to create an obscure clue?

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  2. Yeah, I’m with you — I enjoyed this, but the identity of the killer felt off somehow, like there’s a flaw with it that I just haven’t processed yet; still, at least it’s not a blatantly obvious plot-hole, and for sheer enjoyment DiP is pretty hard to beat (and, really, what does The Times know about fun? A pox on them and their moody ways!).

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  3. according to the Times last Saturday, the only reason people watch it is for some sunshine in the winter

    How stupid of the Times! I watch Death in Paradise for Sara Martins.

    Oh, wait a minute . . .

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great review, and I am in agreement with you on this one too. We were all left a bit uncertain as to why the whole thing had happened. I also thought it was possibly the longest most complex exposition/denouement of the series so far, which sort of revealed the fact that it needed explaining a little too much!

    I think since the departure of DI Pool (Ben Miller) and since Thorogood has started to write less of them (this one was written by Dana Fainaru) there seems to have a been a little of the edge lost. Although, Fainaru has penned a couple of really good episodes from previous seasons as well.

    Nice start though as you said, and looking forward to the rest!

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  5. The scene where Daniel and Victoria go looking for the body in a helicopter and find the body. The dialogues and actions are totally unnatural, considering what we know later. A cheat !

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