Whoever doesn’t believe that the ’70s were the epitome of Australian Cop Dramas, cop this …

Lockdown has provided a massive opportunity to romp through the best TV ever made. Once we exhausted Vera (The modern British version of Colombo), I slept through most of Midsummer Murders (REALLY ? Every week somebody gets knocked off in some bizarre ritual killing driven usually by greed and revenge). Surely if that happened in your borough, you’d move somewhere else.

Of course, there’s the many series of Death in Paradise. Same – but on a Caribbean Island. Shetland… what is it with islands and houses in isolated places that draws the murderers ?

Nora Linde with her Cop de Jour

And on SBS On Demand, for Pete’s (or was it Olaf’s) sake Sandhamn Murders on a Swedish Island where people go to bed in broad daylight. There’s more sex and a lot of drinking, teenage misadventure, infidelity, quite a lot of bicycle riding, running and scooting about in boats, more drinking, a lot of cop procedural but with that freelance nordic style casual dress and fine dining detective work.

There is a good looking boy cop played by a series of handsome nordic blokes, whose rather attractive – not too attractive but rather available female offsider would be a good sub at a pinch but the up close work is never consummated – leaving room for some tension with the female lead who starts out being a banking lawyer, and somehow morphs into a prosecutor who frequently finds herself running alternatively into the handsome detective and her ex-husband. There’s quite a lot of teenage girls being drugged and locked up in boats, and small lighthouse towers, quite a few mysterious drownings, amazing tans, lots of Volvos and BMWs and truly lovely seaside houses. Broken and repaired marriages. Traumatised children of divorced marriages, dodgy real estate deals and fraud. This is one island rich in motives, heads banged on rocks and bodies recovered from the sea in various stages of disrepair. Did I mention the drinking ? There are many bedside hospital scenes with people clinging to life and but for one or two, pulling through (Go for it Big and Hung !)

And everyone sounds like the Swedish chef in the Muppets.

But when it all boils down, Columbo is the real deal. The daddy sleuth of them all. Peter Falk won several golden globes / emmys and millions of fans.

…Inimitable style, incredibly slow pace, relentless pressure on the murderer., inexorable logic.. and smart arse murderers who take Colombo for a fool – big mistake…- this episode has a cameo appearance by Eddie Albert. Great line “Mr Colombo,. some men don’t like to go out looking like an unmade bed.

Note Colombo started at the same time as Bluey – what contrasting styles !

ANd the late night send-up… revoiced Bargearse

Sounds a lot like Judith Lucy, Tony Martin and Rob Sitch doing the voice overs…

Story by Emmjay