New Tricks: Season Seven

New Tricks

On DVD: 
Tuesday, February 22, 2011

If you’ve never seen New Tricks before here is the basic plot: Retired coppers work as consultants with the Metropolitan Police Department in cold case files. The joke has been, and continues to be, that the detectives are fantastic at what they do, using their know how from ages ago to get the job done, but occasionally new technology and methods of policing are required which baffles them a bit. The show stars Dennis Waterman (Sweeney), Alun Armstrong (Braveheart), James Bolam (When The Boat Comes In), and Amanda Redman (Sexy Beast).

Season seven has the retired coppers up to their old tricks (no pun intended) taking on cold cases and running into some shellshocking scenario’s. I have to say that the actors are starting to show a bit of wear, and I know that’s the niche, but for me it’s just starting to take away some of the credibility. For example; when Redman and Waterman run into a suspect Redman gives an awkwardly slow chase (in high heels) that brought me out of the magic of the show for a minute or two. James Bolam is almost a non-character at this point as well giving a half decent performance but looking maybe a bit worse for wear and hardly believable as a field agent. Does this season elude to some kind of change in characters or even a possible end to the series? At times it felt like it. The series is in it’s in 9th season though, though I haven’t seen any of the new episodes so I guess it will be a surprise.

The niche of the show, that the detectives run into the new way of sleuthing, does hit home though. In one episode we meet the departments forensic scientist, a nerdy type who makes hilarious jokes about his work at the most awkward of times. The detectives just want results but the forensics man provides complicated, over their head answers, and heaping helpings of nerd moments of humor. In another episode the detectives meet a clairvoyant who claims to have clues that can help them solve a cold case they’ve reopened. Despite skepticism the group is torn between believing and not believing in this line of sleuthing. Good Morning Lemmings is a less complicated episode but it makes good use of story to match the capabilities of our aged detectives with a good use of old school cop thinking and strategy.

All in all the seventh season of New Tricks does deliver but the show is starting to show that it’s getting a bit frayed around the edges. Still, if you’ve been a fan of the show thus far chances are you’ll love this installment just the same and get a kick out of both the show and the behind the scenes bonus feature and the shows 10 minute blooper reel. So, as always, final judgment is yours. Enjoy. 

AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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