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Category:    Home > Reviews > Mystery > British TV > Sergeant Cribb - The Horizontal Witness

Sergeant Cribb – The Horizontal Witness


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



Yet another solid older detective drama, Sergeant Cribb ran on British TV from 1981 – 1982 and logged 14 episodes that ran about 50 minutes each.  BFS has issued six shows in their Horizontal Witness set and they all hold up very well.  The title show (5/4/80, episode 5) and Something Old, Something New (5/19/80, episode 7) come form the first season, while The Last Trumpet (4/5/81), The Hand That Rocks The Cradle (4/12/81), Choir That Wouldn’t Sing (4/19/81) and Murder Old Boy (5/3/81) are four episodes (2 – 5) in a row from the second season.


They are all well written, well acted, well cast and even have more to do with the personal stories and drama than mystery, but not in a way that is detrimental to the show or the mysteries.  Alan Dobie is really good in the title role and the show is very leisurely in the way it takes its time to tell its story in a way that creates an atmosphere that British TV used to be capable of all the time.  Cribb has to take on the cases and the establishment to get anything done, but with a subtlety that always makes the show compelling.  Simply known as Cribb elsewhere, it is a good time to rediscover the series in this solid three DVD set.


The 1.33 X 1 image is a mix of film and PAL videotape, aging well enough and looking good here in decent transfers.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono is also not bad and the extras are all text, including trivia, cast filmographies and bio and bibliography info on author Peter Lovesey.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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