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Original message: Admittedly, I’ve become hooked on CH12’s European crime dramas over the past few months. Initially watching them was only for curiosity’s sake, I found myself quickly becoming addicted. Two of my favorites have been “Arne Dahl” (apparently replaced this week by “Marie's Mind for Murder “) and “The Inspector and the Sea” (although the other European crime dramas are also quite good, especially compared with series being served up by American producers in the same genre.) While I was a bit sad to see Arne Dahl being replaced by Marie’s Mind for Murder in the 7:00 p.m. Saturday time slot, I realize all good things must eventually come to an end (as only so many episodes of each series are released to PBS). Based on the quality of previous series, I was more than willing to give “Marie’s Mind” a try. (By “Quality”, I mean interesting and diverse character development, intriguing story lines, and a certain undefinable quirkiness to both the characters and the stories.) This is where “Marie’s Mind for Murder” fell flat (in my humble… but some say lovable opinion.) To begin, the character of Marie frankly just seemed dull. Further she seemed to lack any likeability whatsoever. Even the most dastardly of characters needs a bit of likeability thrown in at some level, so certainly the protagonist should be likeable at some level. I would go so far to say her character is as irritating as that annoying co-worker you dread seeing the first thing every morning in the office. Further, her relationship with her antagonist “Jürgen Simmel” just didn’t work. Yes, we all know the cliché relationship many crime dramas use between the main characters, that being the protagonist and the antagonist are polar opposites, yet eventually develop a mutual respect for each other and thus develop a team which draws from their mutual strengths. The reason for this failure was that the antagonist “Jürgen Simmel” was only slightly more irritating than Marie herself. Lastly, the story line was much more predictable than other European crime dramas. This predictability only added to an already dull storyline. So much of the story seemed to be only “filler”. In short, there was no more than one hour’s worth of material (at best) to fill almost two hours of show. How dull was it? I simply could not make it entirely through the episode. To my best estimate (because the episode does not fill the entire two hour time slot), I made it about three-quarters of the way through the show. While I generally will finish watching what I perceive to be even a poorly created story, at about the three-quarter mark, I simply didn’t care anymore “who done it.” Not all series (not even European ones) can be winners. This one is definitely in the “Not all” category.
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