CSI: Miami
Season 3 - Part 1

Starring: David Caruso, Emily Procter and Adam Rodriguez
Momentum Pictures
RRP: 39.99
Certificate: 15
Available 05 June 2006

Chronicling the work of the Miami-Dade crime investigators, CSI: Miami is set against the sun, fun and tropics of the Florida tourist haven. Leading the team is Horatio Caine, an ex-bomb squad detective who is no stranger to confrontations with criminals and the underworld...

For some reason we seem to have missed the release of Season 2 - Part 2 and I don't know what happened there, but Season 3 is a vast improvement over earlier releases. Although, the first episode (Lost Son) seemed to suggest that everything was going to be as naff as usual. David Caruso's character takes a bit of a back seat for quite a lot of these episodes - and that is a very good thing. I never wanted to punch a man in his smug little carrot topped head - until I started watching CSI: Miami. Cain is the most patronising, sad individual that I've ever seen in a TV show. He never admits he's wrong and more often than not he can solve the crime by simply looking at some ridiculous piece of evidence.

But by far Caine's worst crime (no pun intended) is the fact that after two seconds in a room with a suspect he is practically accusing them of murder. And, when he is occasionally in the wrong, does he ever apologise? Does he 'eckers like! This is made all the more infuriating in the very first episode of this release.

Lost Son starts with a boat hitting a bridge and causing a huge hole to appear. Actually the hole in the bridge is nothing in comparison to the holes in the plot for this episode. Here's a quick run down of some of the annoying scenes. Firstly, within two seconds of interviewing a Judo instructor, Caine believes he is covering for someone. Why? Because he claims that a certain make of car was parked outside his Judo class and Caine measures the tyre treads that are there and they are not the size of that car. Firstly, why has he got an encyclopaedic knowledge of tyre spreads? And secondly, there could have been dozens of cars in that space since the kidnapping. Then there is the issue of Caine's reasoning when they find the car that is dumped in the river. He finds a blonde hair in the boot and immediately states it's the kids. And then he sees some footprints in the mud (which if he was doing a thorough job he would have spotted before) and ascertains that the kid was struggling against his kidnappers. Again, those footprints could have belonged to anyone. But no, Caine is correct.

As I mentioned before Caine never apologises for his wild accusations, but what really had me spitting teeth was the poor woman who Cain attacks wrongly in this episode. If that wasn't bad enough, she ends up apologising to Caine for his loss - something that had nothing to do with her.

Now, it could be that the writers wanted to reflect real life. Come on, hands up how many of us hate our bosses and think that we could do a better job than them? [Easy! You are on very rocky ground here Ms Leigh- Ed]. Maybe the producers are trying to create a similar idea with this show.


I'm only going to mention this the once, because I don't generally enjoy giving away major plot developments, but I think everyone knows that Tim Speedle is killed in the opening episode of Season 3, but what on earth where they thinking of? This has to be about the lamest way to write someone out of a show and to add insult to injury the moving scene towards the end, when we are supposed to have time to reflect on Speedle's character, Caine waltzes in and tries to make it all about him! I nearly punched the TV screen in anger!

Right, whinge over. To be fair, the majority of episodes in this collection are of a fairly high standard, especially when Caine is absent. Highlights include:

Pro Per - A drive-by shooting, Miami-style, leaves a ten year-old boy orphaned and puts Yelina in the line of fire when Horatio places the boy in her care. The interplay in this episode between Calleigh and Eric made me realise how the rest of the actors do work as a team. It's only when Caine walks in and does his pantomime acting that everything turns sour. This episode also has a great couple of scenes with a suspect who insists on defending himself - and quite well too.

Under the Influence - A woman is pushed under a moving bus and both her boyfriend and his stalker ex-girlfriend are suspected of her murder. Meanwhile Calleigh's father's latest bender might make him a hit-and-run killer. This episode sees the introduction to the show of Ryan Wolfe who replaces Speedle as well as the reappearance of Calleigh's alcoholic father. This episode also made me appreciate how Alexx Woods is one of the best characters in this show.

Hell Night - A jury field trip to the scene of a murder flips the legal tables when the defendant ends up dead and the twelve jurors become the prime suspects. While the main story is great, the b-plot is also pretty interesting - as it revolves around Yelina's son (who is also Caine's nephew). The boy has gotten in with the wrong crowd and ends up being involved in the accidental death of a tramp, when a joke backfires.

Crime Wave - Miami Beach is evacuated by an approaching tsunami, but the CSI team remains after discovering a bank robbery plot while investigating a seemingly random murder. This episode was written before the tsunami that swept across the Indian Ocean on 26 December 2004. The bank heist is well handled and ends up being much more than it at first appears.

Speed Kills - A "Speed Dating" night for Miami singles turns deadly for one South Beach stud who finds himself on the wrong end of a tire iron. This is another episode which is well constructed and has some great guest stars. Although I did have one question. Can CSI really chop of a corpses head and then boil it to remove the skin? I assume, because the person was murdered, that they can do whatever they need to if it will help catch the killer, but this does seem particularly grim.

Pirated - A string of dead bodies, found off the coast of Miami, turns out to be the work of modern-day pirates. This episode has everything - underwater photography, pirates, cannibalism and a group of nutters running around Miami with rocket launchers. What more could you ask for? This also contains the only laugh out loud joke of this collection. When one of the survivors of the cannibalism storyline is confronted with the fact that his stomach contents are going to be tested, to see what he has eaten, he asks if doing that will bring his dead friend back. To which Calleigh replies "Maybe a part of him".

After the Fall - An innocent man is killed when someone falls on him from a third floor balcony and finding out how leads the CSI team into the centre of a high-level sex and murder scandal. This episode is interesting as it uncovers some corrupt goings on in the legal system - something that will hopefully be explored later on. Although, I was a little surprised that when the person responsible for murdering the prostitute admit so to Caine, and then threatens him, that Caine hadn't recorded the whole conversation (as we'd already learnt in that episode that he was carrying a Dictaphone around with him).

Sci-Fi fans may be interested to learn that Emilie de Ravin (who played Tess in Roswell) appears in the episode Legal, and that J. August Richards (who played Gunn in Angel) turns up in Hell Night.

Extras include audio commentaries on five episodes; CSI: Miami: Deep Blue Sea featurette (a look at the problems that water has on filming); and CSI: Miami: Visualising Season 3 featurette (an overview of the effects for this season).

So, all in all, this collection showcases some pretty impressive episodes. It's just a shame that Caine is still wandering around with his hands on his hips spouting a load of old dribble.

Amber Leigh

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