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CSI: Miami - Season 6, Part 1 (DVD)

Review by Lizzie Guilfoyle

SEASON 6, Part 1 of the popular crime series CSI: Miami is now available to buy on DVD and for fans of the show that’s probably not a minute too soon.

And although all the old familiar faces are back in the season premiere (Dangerous Son), Ryan Wolfe (Jonathan Togo) hasn’t yet been reinstated – he lost his job, you will no doubt remember, when his private and professional lives clashed towards the end of Season 5. But don’t despair, Natalia (Eva La Rue) discovers him working as a firing instructor so Wolfe is still very much a part of CSI.

A complex young man, Wolfe, like CSI: Crime Scene Investigation‘s ill-fated Warrick Brown, doesn’t quite fit the mould. This does, however, make him a far more interesting character and provides scope for storylines that are just that little bit different. Besides, nobody’s perfect so it’s easy to empathise with this enigmatic young man who’s portrayed so sensitively by Togo.

And somewhat surprisingly, Frank Tripp (Rex Linn), complete with shaved head, is now in uniform – not demoted as I at first suspected, but because he passed his sergeant’s exam.

But the real shock of Dangerous Son (and there’s a clue in the title) is that Caine (David Caruso) discovers he has a 16 year old son – Kyle (Evan Ellingson). But nothing’s ever that simple for Horatio – Kyle turns out to be the principal suspect in the murder of a probation officer. This is, in fact, the beginning of an on-going storyline that sees Kyle imprisoned with and ill-treated by hardened convicts and although it makes for good television, I’m inclined to think that an offender as young as Kyle would be detained in a separate institution – or maybe things are different in America.

Also back – at least for a few episodes – is another maverick of sorts, the rakish Jake Berkely (Johnny Whitworth) and it’s obvious from the outset that he and Calleigh (Emily Procter) are an item. Which doesn’t go down well with Delko (Adam Rodriguez) who obviously has a soft spot for his superior. But Delko is an honorable man and in an episode entitled Deep Freeze, he’s filled with remorse when he inadvertently alerts Rick Stetler to the relationship – one that is, of course, forbidden to colleagues. This is another story arc that will no doubt rumble on throughout the season.

And in Bang, Bang, Your Debt, Season 6 takes a welcome trip down memory lane with a special guest appearance by Rory Cochrane. Yes, he’s back for just the one episode playing CSI Tim Speedle, who was fatally wounded when his weapon misfunctioned and failed to fire during a ‘call-out’ way back in Season 3 . And it’s made possible through Delko’s transitory hallucinations caused by the head injury he sustained last season. It’s all very cleverly done and well played out by both Cochrane and Rodriguez.

Storylines, though occasionally bizarre, are fast-paced, convoluted and sometimes deeply moving – as with Permanent Vacation, in which the team investigates the death of an 18-year-old boy who was shot and fatally wounded while on holiday with his parents and younger brother. Their reactions to his death, though vastly different, have tragic and unforseen consequences.
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All that, plus exotic locations, glorious sunshine and a glamorous cast, definitely sets CSI: Miami apart from other TV crime dramas (its Vegas and New York counterparts excepting). And if it does have faults – as one website is only too eager to point out – let’s not forget that it is designed purely to entertain. And that it most certainly does.