Inspector Lewis

LewisHome sick with the flu these days. You’ll have noticed blogging was very slow yesterday. I’ve been watching a few episodes of my wife’s dvd collection of Lewis, the fine British tv series. I confess upfront I’m not familiar with the original series based on Colin Dexter’s novels, nor the books themselves.

It’s interesting to view an entire small screen series beginning to end. One gets a sense of character development as they solve some pretty brutal cases. The veneer of civilized Oxford has a very seamy underbelly. Makes me wonder a bit about my university town.

I enjoy the twist on the standard old cop/new cop thing: Lewis is something of a hothead and his young assistant, Hathaway, is the solid, thoughtful one. I like the development of Hathaway, too: former seminarian who plays world music when he’s not prying small details out of cases.

A number of episodes have religious faith as a context for the mystery. That catches my notice, of course. Lewis is skeptical of faith, but overall the treatment of religion is largely fair.

Cinematography and musical scoring is marvelous. I can’t think of better work I’ve seen on tv. Most feature films don’t measure up to it either.

As for the overall feel of the series, I don’t recall any episode that stands out or that fails the grade. I know that I enjoy the deception and shift in the episodes–none have left me disappointed. If only science fiction television were this good.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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1 Response to Inspector Lewis

  1. John McGrath says:

    Like so much that is British the series is really a novel of manners, a way of displaying how a particular society at a particular time behaves based on shared or conflicting values and personal drives. The murders are cleverly done (It’s Oxford) and cleverly solved but the fascination is with the society and the people in it. A cousin of mine was the head at the grammar school in Oxford. he was born and raised in Ireland but was always kindly assured that he wasn’t Irish, he was English. He didn’t like that, but eventually saw himself as very much like the Warwickshire old Catholics (from the time of Elizabeth and Mary) so he made peace with his dual identity. Ironically he was married to a descendant of Queen Victoria, but from an impoverished continental branch so that didn’t count much. They kept her lineage a secret, lol.

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