I was surprised to see this particular set finally end up on American shelves only because it has not appeared much sooner. The BBC has found a ready market for the regional detective mysteries as evidenced by the Hettie Wainthrops (Yorks/Lancs) and the Midsommer Murders (Oxon/Bucks) and here we are with murder mysteries from the West Country. You would think that there were more murders than in Cabot Cove.
Road Rage has as it's seeming main concern the environmental opposition to a new motorway coming from the hippie-like travellers, who, as any visitor to Britain will know are the bane of the Western side of the Cotswolds with their illegal campsites, begging etc etc.
Inspector Wexford is a genial man with a disarmingly charming wife and a colleague who has a degree of impatience matched by his university education.
This plot is interwoven with mysterious disappearances and other nefarious activities which appear to be linked to a local minicab company.
In this lengthy set, the twists and turns are juxtaposed with the demands of extended family life as Wexford's dughter is about to give birth and does so as the centre of the drama unfolds.
As we follow the developments the human, erring side of the detective unfolds in sharp relief to the realtively inhuman objective side of Mike, his subordinate.
Once again a vehicle for the generous shots of the beautiful English countryside, this show, while rather sentimental and nostalgic somewhat reminiscent of Premier John Major's pechant for warm beer and cricket, demonstartes a preference for the past where good policing wins the day against well defined bad guys without any of the trappings of urban violence and tribal activity.
My only reservation is the willingness of the American audience to put up with the thicker dialects spoken so much on this show. It seems to me that this would be a significant drawback to the general acceptance of this show on US soil.
Having lived in and around this area I have a weakness for this particular show and would welcome more episodes on DVD. While the US has been very quick to mine the vaults of television shows and get the DVDs out while making this one of the fastest growing retail DVD market segments in America, the British have been backwards in coming forwards in this area.
Which reminds me when are we going to see Bergerac and the Equalizer?