A young man's murder touches off a search for his girlfriend and partner in ballroom dancing classes.



(screenplay) (as Peter J Hammond), (characters)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Rosemary Wood
Frances Kirby
Tony Kirby
Elaine Trim
Richard Budd
Nicola Redmond ...
Marissa Clarke
Ifan Huw Dafydd ...
Paul Bright
Carol Prentice
David Henry ...
Geoffrey Leesley ...
Jim Druce (as Geoff Leesley)


DCI Tom Barnaby and DS Ben Jones investigate the death of Simon Bright who is found dead inside an old World War II vintage Humber parked at an abandoned airfield. From all appearances, the death appears to be a suicide, but the pathologist determines that the man suffered a severe blow to the dead and may in fact have been unconscious when he died of carbon monoxide poisoning. Simon Bright's girlfriend, Laura Sharp, is nowhere to be found, but the death of the aging village Lothario and the attempted murder of another of her friends narrows the list of possible murderers somewhat. Barnaby is convinced that one of Laura's ex-lovers is responsible but given her rather active life, the question becomes which one? Written by garykmcd

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Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

12 November 2006 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?


Richard Budd (postmaster) states that Laura Sharp used the post office to "cash her giro." In the UK, "giro" is a nickname for the bi-weekly unemployment benefit check. See more »


When Barnaby and Jones drive to the airfield to look at the second body, the car arrives in heavy rain: there are puddles on the ground and distant rumbles of thunder can be heard. But when they get out of the car a few seconds later, the ground is dry and people in the distance are casting shadows, showing that the weather has suddenly become sunny. See more »


Cully Barnaby: Where's Dad's investigation taking place at the moment?
Joyce Barnaby: Some village or other.
Cully Barnaby: You've been conned, Mum.
Joyce Barnaby: What?
[Cully indicates Ben, then goes over to him]
DS Ben Jones: Hi, Cully.
Cully Barnaby: Don't tell me what you're doing here; I've already sussed it.
DS Ben Jones: I'm undercover.
Cully Barnaby: Yes, but your feet give you away.
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For All We Know
Music by J. Fred Coots
Lyrics by Sam Lewis
Performed by Nat 'King' Cole
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User Reviews

Decent if uneven
9 February 2017 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Not one of the best 'Midsomer Murders' episodes, but at the same time not among the worst. For a season opener though, "Dance with the Dead" was a little disappointing (especially when many of the earlier seasons had fantastic season openers).

"Dance with the Dead's" biggest problem is the pacing, which was problematic enough to detract more than one star from the rating. The pacing is rather rambling and some of the middle third does badly drag due to padding that doesn't add as much as it thought it did, with the overlong and pretty dull dance night scene being the biggest offender. That scene was also rather pointless and seemed only to be there to pad out the running time.

The World War 2 nostalgia is a little distracting and the mystery girl was not quite developed enough for my liking to make me care for her, some of what is said about her is on the slightly strained side.

However, the production values as always are top notch, with to die for scenery, the idyllic look of it contrasting very well with the story's grimness, and quaint and atmospheric photography. The music fits perfectly, with some lush jauntiness and sometimes an ominous quality, and the theme tune one of the most memorable and instantly recognisable of the genre.

Meanwhile, the script is smart and thought-provoking with some nice humour (that luckily wasn't overused or out of place in an episode with such a serious story), a grimness and with characters that are colourful and eccentric. The story is compelling enough, with an ending that's both wacky and poignant. The killer's identity and motive are both very surprising.

John Nettles and Jason Hughes are both superb, individually and together, and the supporting cast are without complaint.

All in all, a decent episode but could have been much better with tighter pacing and much less padding. 7/10 Bethany Cox

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