Mr. & Mrs. Murder: Series One DVD Review: Worth a Look

The Australian TV series Mr. & Mrs. Murder could have been a great show, if given a little time to be fine-tuned.
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Thanks to Acorn Media, I have discovered some great shows from outside of the U.S., and had high hopes for the first season of Mr. & Mrs. Murder. Acorn specializes in packaging mostly British programs on DVD, however Mr. & Mrs. Murder was an Australian series. I say “was” because it was cancelled after the first season, for various reasons. The good news is that with the new Mr. & Mrs. Murder Series One four-DVD set, we get to see all 13 episodes in the comfort of our own homes.

The premise is certainly intriguing. Charlie (Shaun Micallef) and Nicola Buchanan (Kat Stewart) are a married couple who run a cleaning business. Their specialty is crime scenes, particularly those involving a murder. In the process of cleaning up these grisly sites, they often find evidence and clues that the police have overlooked. Thanks to their keen abilities, the Buchanans wind up solving cases that baffled the cops.

In watching the 13 one-hour episodes, I see what could have been a great show if it had just been given a little time to be fine-tuned. Mr. & Mrs. Murder leans much more towards comedy than police procedural, but the mix is a little off. It is not all that funny, and the basic “cop stuff” is weak as well. If these elements had either been tightened, or if the show had strongly embraced one or the other, I think it would have worked better. Having said that, I still think that Mr. & Mrs. Murder was pretty good, and worth watching.

The set opens with “Early Checkout,” which involves the murder of a popular author in his hotel room. All clues point to a member of the hotel staff, but the Buchanans disagree. They show their tenacity by checking in at the hotel, ostensibly on a mini-vacation, to figure out what really happened. As we will see over the course of the remaining 12 episodes, their instincts were correct, and they do solve the case. It is a thankless task though, as the police do not like being shown up, in any country.

A few of the more intriguing episodes among the bunch are “Atlas Drugged,” “Thoroughly Dead Thoroughbred,” “Zootopia,” and “The Course Whisperer.” Over the course of the series, the Buchanans are often joined by their niece Jess (Lucy Honigman) and on the official side, the harried, overworked police detective Peter Vinetti (Jonny Pasvolsky). Another inescapable ingredient in the show are the lusty interchanges between this married couple. Actually it is mostly Nicola, who is one horny lady. That aspect is actually a little over-the-top, although it may have been tweaked had the show been picked up for another season.

But hey, it is all in fun, and it is unfortunate that Mr. & Mrs. Murder was not given the opportunity to grow. Bonus features include a behind-the-scenes featurette (seven minutes), cast interviews (three minutes), extended footage (seven minutes), and a photo gallery. Mr. & Mrs. Murder was a good show, and worth a look.

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