I have a weakness for procedural crime shows. They are comfortingly predictable; a murder happens at the beginning, and then a team of policemen and forensics experts solve the crime. The shows are more fantasy than mystery, because despite their inherent violence, they reassure viewers that the terrors of the world can be resolved in about 45 minutes.
But when the show isn’t set in a major city, the level of crime that occurs on a weekly basis becomes implausible. Years ago, this very complaint was made about “Murder She Wrote”, where eventually, the only possible explanation for the high number of murders in such a small town was that the sweet, crime solving mystery writer played by Angela Lansbury, was a serial killer.
So it is with the BBC’s “Inspector Lewis Mysteries”. It is set in Oxford, a city whose gothic spires and dramatic arches have housed a fantastic legacy of writers and artists. The alma mater of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and Lewis Carroll, the dining hall at its Christchurch college was more recently used as the set for main dining hall of Hogwarts.
But according to “Inspector Lewis”, Oxford is also a place that is rife with murderous professors and psychopathic students. It’s a wonder that any parent would be okay sending their kids there; If the statistics of the show were true, Oxford would be the most dangerous university in the world.
While my university was in a much less idyllic setting, I don’t recall even one professor being arrested for murder, or even accused of a felony. Unless you consider being terminally boring a crime.
Which it is. But not one for which you can be arrested.
Of course it might be entertaining to find a mystery solving team to apprehend and punish someone who is accused of being terminally boring. What sentence is appropriate for the guy at the bar nattering on about his golf score? Perhaps he should be chained to the woman who won’t stop talking about her latest diet? Or is this cruel and unusual punishment for the both of them?
The answer to that last question can be the basis of the spinoff show “Petty Crime Lawyers: justice for banal, first world problems.”
I imagine the setting could be anywhere where the over privileged exist, making it perfect for multi national franchising.