Van der Valk (1972–1992)
6.7/10
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One Herring's Not Enough 

Commisaris Van der Valk has had a particularly long day when someone contacts the station to say that he has just killed his wife who he caught in bed with her lover. Mr. Boersma had been ... See full summary »

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Episode complete credited cast:
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Van der Valk
Michael Latimer ...
Insp Johnny Kroon
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Arlette van der Valk
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Boersma
...
Dr. Smeding
Alan Haines ...
Brigadier Mertens
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Brigadier Stribos
Colin McCormack ...
Sailor
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Commisaris Van der Valk has had a particularly long day when someone contacts the station to say that he has just killed his wife who he caught in bed with her lover. Mr. Boersma had been away for much of the week but came home early and caught them together. He claims that he shot them both with his pistol but when Inspector Johnny Kroon goes to investigate, he finds nothing out of place and certainly does not find the two bodies Boersma claimed would be there. When presented with the facts, Boersma says he must have had a mental breakdown of some sort and imagined the whole thing. Van der Valk suspects otherwise. Written by garykmcd

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Action | Drama

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13 September 1972 (UK)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Please Confess At Your Earliest Convenience
20 March 2015 | by See all my reviews

Cigar-chomping booze-hound Dutch cop Simon "Piet" Van der Valk (Barry Foster) and his young subordinate Johnny Kroon (Michael Latimer) receive a phone call from art professor Jan Broersma (Clifford Rose) confessing to having murdered his wife and her lover.

In a most civil manner, Broersma meets with the detectives and repeats his confession in person at the Amsterdam station. Given coffee, a newspaper and placed in a clean, unlocked cell Broersma waits whilst Kroon investigates the murder scene.

As with everything about Broersma's statement the report of murder is inaccurate. Why Broersma has given a false report is less a matter of mischief-making and more deeply psychological. The chilling conclusion is entirely unexpected which is the best thing that can be said about it.

The lack of intensity is this teleplay makes it stand out. There is no sense of urgency and instead the depiction of policing is as laid back as it gets before the 'Honor System' kicks in. It seems like more a foreign writer's imagining of police work in Amsterdam than a reflection of reality.

As for the look of the production it is about cheap as it gets. The exteriors filmed in and around Amsterdam are aesthetically pleasing but the interiors shot on video in give it a cheap look. The acting is decent enough but the dialogue & situations suggest stereotypical Dutch caricatures rather than well-written characters and thus don't much help the performers.

It is never good when a stronger impression is give by the lack of budget than the narrative.


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