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Category:    Home > Reviews > Mystery > British TV > Rosemary & Thyme - Series One (Acorn Media DVD Set)

Rosemary & Thyme – Series One


Picture: B-     Sound: B-     Extras: C     Episodes: B-



Two middle-aged women are brought together by chance and despite any problems they have, some deaths that turn out to be murders give them a new reason to rally.  Laura Thyme (Pam Ferris) is a former policewoman who just found out what a rat her husband is.  Rosemary Boxer (Felicity Kendall from Parting Shots, reviewed elsewhere on this site) has just lost her job and wants to smash her former employer.  Together, they are Rosemary & Thyme (2003), one of the more unlikely detective pairing of late.


This new Series One boxed set features the first 6 of what have been 14 episodes so far.  The inaugural episodes are as follows:



1)     And No Birds Sing – The pilot case that brings the women together.  Are some accidental deaths really accidents, and who is that old lady with the butcher knife?

2)     Arabica & The Early Spider – Murray Head guest stars in this tale of a horse and a Pop music star. 

3)     The Language Of Flowers – A fancy party turns up a dead body and the green-thumbed duo just happen to be doing a major overhaul of the spa where it takes place.  Coincidence?  They’re about to find out.

4)     Sweet Angelica – A strange foreign student shoplifting incident leads to disappearing people and possibly murder.  Good thing the school is having specialty landscaping done by you know who.

5)     A Simple Plot – Can the ladies help a blind professor hold on to his property when murder creeps in and a very rich, wealthy adversary may need to be dealt with.

6)     The Tree of Death – An archery death on a tree stump has the damsels of greenery investigating who planted the arrow.



This could have been plain old fuddy duddy television in lesser hands, but this is more plausible, yet entertaining work that deserves a wider audience.  The show began with a strong idea, then managed to develop into a good detective show with a bit more subtle comedy than you would usually find in the genre.  Producer Brian Eastman scored the first ace in his casting of the leads early on before the show knew what direction it was going in.  It is smart in the way it deals with the lives of the leads and never degenerates into Scarecrow & Mrs. King.  Rosemary & Thyme is worth your time, even when some of the mysteries run into minor problems.


The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1/16 X 9 image is nice and clean, a top-rate presentation in line with the best digital HD-intended TV productions that are thankfully on the increase.  Cinematographer Paul Englefield gives the show a nice, clear, vivid look that makes the show fun and involving.  An extra point for knowing how to shoot plants.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo has nice Pro Logic surrounds and the combination makes the show a fine watch on DVD.  The theme song is performed by John Williams, with general music performed by Christopher Gunning.   All the extras are on DVD 1 and include a Ferris/Kendal interview taped 3/12/03 and running 7:54, a stills section, cast biography text and text notes.  That should be enough until Acorn Media issues the next set.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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