R.I.P: Screen Watching

peril-of-the-screenAs part of my R.I.P. Challenge I watched two TV series for a total of 13 shows. Both were highly enjoyable. They are set in England, of course, as British mysteries just can’t be surpassed by any other country, in my opinion.

bletchley-circleThe Bletchley Circle

I just “discovered” this two-season series. It features four young women who worked together during World War II in a very secret code-breaking department. They were highly skilled and successful code breakers. But, now it’s 1952-53 and the women are back to their “normal” lives. In spite of their normal activities, they still have those code-breaking abilities. Its hard to ignore those abilities.

The story begins with Susan who is a busy wife and mother. Susan has been following the news reports of a serial killer who has already killed five women in. Susan sees a pattern to these killings. Seeing patterns is something she’s very good at. She takes her theory to the police, but they send her back home after a polite no thank you and a figurative pat on the head.

Susan can’t let it go. She contacts three other women she worked with at Bletchley and together they take on the investigation on their own. The women have all signed agreements to keep their government work secret which means they can’t tell their husbands or other significant people about their work. It causes conflict, but the women are determined to keep going. In addition, what they are doing can have dangerous consequences, especially as they get closer to finding the serial killer.

This was a very scary yet fascinating mini-series. There was enough fright to fit right in with R.I.P. There are two seasons with a total of seven episodes each lasting about an hour. The show is available on Netflix, PBS and iTV.

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midsomer-murdersMidsommer Murders – Season 15

This is one of my favorite shows that I’ve been watching since the late ‘90s. The last few years the main character has changed. Instead of the long-lasting Deputy Chief Inspector Tom Barnaby (John Nettles), we have Tom’s younger cousin John Barnaby (Neil Dudgeon). The change has brought a little humor to the show, primarily with Dudgeon’s facial expressions, light sarcasm and John’s banter with his dog. The other change is in the actor playing Barnaby’s side-kick. It’s now Detective Sergeant Charlie Nelson (Gwilym Lee). I really like these changes.

In spite of the lightness brought on by the new DCI, Season 15 has a dark feel to it. In fact, as the beginning title of the show comes on the screen shows the title as it begins dripping blood on the letters. (Eww) The plots themselves are quite spooky. There’s a head-less horseman in one, death during a total eclipse of the sun in another, multiple murders connected to a girls school, and an attempted murder victim finally waking up after a year-long coma. My favorite, however, is the episode titled Death and the Divas. It revolves around several 1960-era horror films. One person after another is killed using the same methods as those in the films. It was extremely creepy.

Season 15 has six episodes, each lasting about 90 minutes. You can find them on NetFlix, PBS, and iTV.

Warning: Keep the lights on and the doors locked while watching these shows. You’ll feel better.

R.I.P. Challenge: Screen:  13/4

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