Murdoch Mysteries Season 3 DVD Review–Alternate Mystery
Ah, you’ve got to love the folks out at Acorn Media. They’ve sent us plenty of exciting pieces over the months, and we’ve reviewed them for you right here. Now they’ve sent us a new and intriguing piece for us to review, Murdoch Mysteries Season 3, and this one is a lot unlike anything we’ve seen before.
Murdoch Mysteries Season 3 takes us to the “age of invention”, Victorian era Toronto, for a shot of the old steampunk. Admittedly, it isn’t exactly steampunk, but it’s close enough for government work. Anyway, this is going to bring us back with William Murdoch, a police detective in Toronto (which is probably why they call this a “season” instead of a “series” like the Brits do) who favors science and reason in solving crimes. He’s aided and abetted by a police pathologist who favors similar methods, and he’ll be investigating murders, art forgeries, and even joining up with one of the era’s most evocative (and yet often forgotten) figures, Nikola Tesla, in the pursuit of justice.
Now that by itself is worth a nod if nothing else–for crying out loud, when’s the last time you saw anything like this, anywhere?–but a good idea isn’t enough by itself to make a truly worthwhile experience. So we turn to execution to find out just how this sucker went down, and the answer to that is: surprisingly well.
They’ve got humor mingled in with crime drama, and just a splash of science fiction to give it that edge of the unique to really light a fire under it. The plain and simple on this one is that it’s a huge surprise, in no uncertain terms. There are parts where you’ll laugh, where you’ll gasp, and parts that will leave you scratching your head just a bit, but one thing it is not, is it is not dull. At least, not very often.
Think of this as almost a Victorian version of Fringe and you won’t be terribly far off. Sure, it doesn’t quite have the jovial manic lunacy of Walter and his crew, but if you suddenly took them back in time and put them in Canada in the Victorian era, well, you’d probably get something approximately like this.
The Screenhead Ten Scale gives the Murdoch Mysteries a seven out of ten for being a unique idea reasonably well done. It’s not all it might have been, admittedly–I would’ve preferred something a bit more over the top in the style of Doctor Who, maybe a nice Arliss Loveless-style mechanical spider stomping through Winnipeg–but still, I’m reasonably pleased with this.