Symbolic Forest

A homage to loading screens.

Blog : Posts tagged with ‘crime’


In which we recommend some telly

Regular readers might remember that, back in the mists of time – well, December – I mentioned that we’d been watching The Wire on DVD. And that it was very good. None of the bogus and ridiculous “science” you get on CSI;* not much patronising or heartstring-tugging, no deus ex machina and no wrapping the plotlines up inside an hour; just lots of what was – to someone who doesn’t know anything about the real thing, like me – lots of realistic investigative work.

Well, we’ve finally finished watching Season One, just as it finally makes its way onto the BBC. And, to be honest, I’m glad we had the DVDs to watch it from. It took us six months to do, twice as long as it will take BBC2 to show it. It’s a complicated programme, and we ended up watching several episodes twice because we hadn’t been concentrating the first time. In the end, we had to make sure that we only tried to watch it when we were definitely wide awake, otherwise we’d end up missing half of what went on. If we’d tried watching an episode on late night TV every week, we’d have been baffled – we had enough trouble with Dexter season two, just finished on ITV1,** and as unlike The Wire as it is possible for a cop show to be.***

I did wonder, idly, about recommending The Wire to The Parents. They’ve always liked police procedurals, both on telly and in books, and long-form dramas, so, I thought, they’d probably love it.**** But then, I remembered, how much The Mother tuts at the slightest hint of a bad word. The Wire has realistic dialogue.***** It wouldn’t work out. Before they were ten minutes into the first episode, she’d have asked to turn it off.

If you’ve seen the mysterious trailers for The Wire on the BBC, and you’ve not heard of it, go and watch it. It really is good. Very good. As for us: we’ve had the Season 2 DVDs sitting on the bookshelf since Christmas. As soon as we’re properly awake, they’re going in the DVD player. Hurrah!

Update, April 2nd 2009: BBC2 currently seem to be showing episodes of The Wire daily. Meaning that, for one thing, they will whip through the whole series in under three weeks; and for another, if you didn’t start watching on Monday then it’s already too late. Tonight is Episode 4, and the plot is already well under way.

* insert your favourite “CSI [somewhere]” joke here. I’ve mentioned CSI Bedminster myself before, and Half Man Half Biscuit have produced CSI:Ambleside.

** I’m still not used to the name “ITV1″. In my mind it’s still the old federated network – Yorkshire TV where I grew up.

*** Dexter, though, certainly had more tension. Even though we knew full well that there are at least three more series after the one ITV have just been showing, we were still on edge at practically every cliffhanger.

**** Unlike us, they have a DVD recorder, so it would still be compatible with their in-bed-by-10 lifestyle.

***** And at least one scene where every single word of dialogue is a swear word. Every word. A bit like the opening scene in Four Weddings And A Funeral, but set at a scene-of-crime.

Career Options

In which we wonder why I never thought of something

The Mother is always fond of saying: “you know, with your brain and your skills, you could have done so much better for a career! You could have done anything you wanted!”

So, when we heard on the news this morning about the teenager who allegedly made millions from internet crime, I was slightly surprised she didn’t say anything. I was almost expecting: “Why didn’t you do that? You’re just as bright as he is! You could have made millions from botnets and fraud by now if you’d only put your mind to it!”

Murder of crows

In which the animals are up to something

Today’s big news item: the National Wildlife Crime Unit has been launched. Based in North Berwick, a small village on the coast east of Edinburgh, it’s the first specialist police unit devoted solely to wildlife crime. I can’t wait until the police dramas start…

“What’s on the menu today, Sarge?”

“It’s a bad one today, chief. A dead goose in Clarence Gardens. All the signs are, a couple of squirrels ganged up on it, then got away up the Haxby Road. There’s something a bit suspicious about it, though, can’t quite put my finger on it.”

“Don’t trust the signs, Sarge. Remember the Pocklington case – all the signs pointed to sheep, but it turned out to be wolves all along. Round up a few of the local squirrels, just for show, but bring some rats down to the station too – they’ll know what’s going on. What’s next?”

“Three badgers held up an off-license in Netherthong, got away with the contents of the till and a few cartons of fags.”

“I don’t care about that, let the local cops sort it. Anything else?”

“One other thing, chief: a stoat holding three gerbils and a priest hostage in Wemyss Bay. Wants a week’s supply of rabbits, immunity from prosecution, a fast car and a ticket for the ferry.”

“Sarge, it’s a hard job we’ve got, and if there’s one thing these years on the force have taught me… Sarge? Are you listening? Stop daydreaming, man!”


“If there’s one thing these years have taught me, Sarge, it’s never trust a stoat. They’ll weasel their way out of anything. Let’s get to work!”