New Tricks-Series 1 (2004)

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Released 31-Aug-2005

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Main Menu Audio
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2004
Running Time 436:47 (Case: 386)
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (37:24)
Multi Disc Set (3)
Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Jon East
Graham Theakston
Jamie Payne
Paul Seed
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring Amanda Redman
Alun Armstrong
James Bolam
Dennis Waterman
Chiké Okonkwo
Nicholas Day
Anthony Calf
Susan Jameson
Natalie Forbes
Heather James
Carolyn Allen
Patrick Baladi
Case ?
RPI $39.95 Music Mike Moran
Martin Phipps
Rohan Stevenson


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English for the Hearing Impaired Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Another in a long line of top quality English police shows hits the shiny disc format and it is very welcome. New Tricks first showed on the BBC in 2003 and has also been shown locally on the ABC. So far, two seasons of this series have been made and this three disc set includes the entire first season consisting of an extended pilot and 6 one hour episodes. This one is a mixture of serious policing and some offbeat and quirky comedy which makes for a very entertaining combination.

    The premise of the show is that a high flying Detective Superintendent on the way up stuffs up a major case by blowing a kidnap rescue situation. Accordingly, she is reassigned to start up a new squad to re-investigate old cases which need to be looked into for a variety of reasons. They are to be called UCOS - The Unsolved Case Squad. She takes the job before realising that the 'squad' will be made up of three old retired detectives plus a technology specialist. Their old fashioned and sometimes dubious methods do not sit well with her new policing training which of course leads to numerous tensions between them as a mutual respect slowly develops.

    The main characters are:

    The episodes are:

  1. Pilot (86:28) - Covers the formation of the squad including interviews and the re-investigation of a murder from 20 years previously for which a man, Roderick Wringer, was convicted but whose guilt now seems to be in doubt.
  2. Episode 1 (57:24) - After the gun which killed her is found, the squad re-opens the 1987 murder of a policewoman. This is a very dramatic episode which reveals significant back story about the characters.
  3. Episode 2 (59:27) - The squad is invited to Buckingham Palace to investigate a fake painting owned by the palace. This leads to an old arson/murder case from 20 years previously.
  4. Episode 3 (58:08) - They look into the case of a body found 20 years previously of a protestor at a nuclear plant. He was sharing a tent with four friends but was killed during the night.
  5. Episode 4 (57:52) - The dying father of a young man who killed himself in 1982 wants his case re-opened. It would seem he killed himself because he thought the police were fitting him up for the murder of a 10 year old boy. The case revolves around a swanky golf club.
  6. Episode 5 (59:17) - A handbag is found in a dole office being demolished. It contains a pair of blood spattered hotpants which belonged to a woman who went missing with her baby in 1971. The squad investigate. Excellent episode.
  7. Episode 6 (58:11) - Jack visits a medium to try and contact his dead wife. Instead he is contacted by a dead girl who tells him she was very thin at the end and died before her time. It seems to match the details of an old case which was unsolved.

    This is an excellent English cop show which includes a nice twist of humour to the interesting cases on offer. Recommended.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality is very good.

    The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio 16x9 enhanced which is probably the original aspect ratio.

    The picture was quite clear and sharp throughout but certainly not to the standard of new feature films. There was no evidence of low level noise. Shadow detail was reasonable without being spectacular. The pilot featured some very light grain which was slightly heavier in the other episodes.

    The colour was good although there was some mild colour bleeding, especially from light colours.

    The only noticeable artefact was aliasing which was generally mild in nature such as on a car grille at 35:06 (Pilot) and Venetians at 72:10. Nothing too much to worry about here.

    There are subtitles in English for the hearing impaired which were clear and easy to read, although somewhat changed from the spoken word.

    The set contains one DVD5 which contains the pilot and two DVD9s which contain the other episodes. The layer changes were not overly noticeable and occurred at 37:24 in Episode 2 and 26:18 in Episode 6.
    

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    The audio quality is good.

    This DVD contains an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo soundtrack encoded at 192 Kb/s.

    Dialogue was clear and easy to understand and there was no problem with audio sync.

    The music includes two songs sung by Dennis Waterman which are not too bad..

    The surround speakers and subwoofer were not used.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

    None.

Menu

    The menu was still but included music and the ability to select subtitles.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    This set is available in the same format in Region 2 and is not available in Region 1.

Summary

    An excellent English police series with a great twist of humour.

    The video quality is very good.

    The audio quality is good.

    The set has no extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, using Component output
DisplaySony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersBose 201 Direct Reflecting (Front), Phillips SB680V (Surround), Phillips MX731 (Center), Yamaha YST SW90 (Sub)

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