During the Christmas days Barnaby has to solve an explosion as well as a number of murders near a freight company while trying to cope with his acting CS who has very strong beliefs about teamwork.



(screenplay), (characters)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Jane Wymark ...
James Parkes
Penny Galsworthy
Caroline Halsey
Nick Fletcher ...
Gus Gallagher ...
Dale Mitchinson
Sidney Livingstone ...
Don Mitchinson
Tom Beard ...
Tim Galsworthy
Elspeth Rae ...
Layla Barkham
Alexandra Morris ...


In the run-up to Christmas, Barnaby and Jones find themselves, thanks to their very young 'wonder boy' chief superintendent, on a team-building exercise at the local Territorial Army Centre, run by Matt Parkes. Colonel Parkes is a highly respected man, unlike his womanizing waster of a son, Jamie, who is hated by all,even Caroline, his grand-mother, whose daughter died giving birth to him. Especially bitter is Penny Galsworthy,wife of another T.A. officer and garage owner Tim, whose daughter killed herself after being impregnated by Jamie, and she stalks him obsessively. George Barkham, another soldier, missed out on being promoted to a partnership at Matt Parkes' haulage firm, thanks to Jamie, who is also black-mailing George's daughter. The Parkes' yard is torched, causing an explosion and a watch-man almost killed. Then a criminal associate of Jamie and Jamie himself both meet their maker in quick succession. Ultimately Barnaby has the sad duty of arresting somebody who has rid the... Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

24 December 2008 (UK)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


| (dvd release)


Aspect Ratio:

16:9 widescreen
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Did You Know?


Tim Pigott-Smith and Judy Parfitt are son-in-law and mother-in-law in this entertaining episode of "Midsomer Murders." They also played son-in-law and mother-in-law in the excellent mini-series "Jewel in the Crown." See more »


WPC Stephens uses a computer to scan in the picture of the speeding car and then zooms to get details of the overalls on the back parcel shelf of the car. Speeding camera pictures do not have sufficient resolution to be able to zoom in to that level of detail (especially after being scanned). See more »


[first lines]
James Parkes: Now stay there one moment.
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We Wish You a Merry Christmas
Traditional English carol
Background score
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User Reviews

It's hard for Barnaby to get the Christmas spirit
18 June 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Poor Barnaby. It's close to Christmas, and he's saddled with a baby-faced superintendent, filled with enthusiasm, who wants to concentrate on teamwork, team-building exercises, and the filling out of forms. And where should the team-building workshops take place but at the local Army Centre, which is the site for murder and all sorts of mayhem.

The Centre is run by Colonel Parkes, who, despite being a good man himself, has a womanizing loser, Jamie, for a son. Everyone loathes him, and this includes his own grandmother, whose daughter died giving birth to him.

The list goes on. There's Penny Galsworthy, whose daughter killed herself after Jamie got her pregnant, and Penny's husband Tim. Penny stalks Jamie constantly. And George Barkham, who was supposed to be made a partner at the center until Jamie returned home from France and took the job from him.

One night the Parkes' yard is bombed; after that, two deaths occur. Barnaby discovers a crime ring and must ferret out motives and whodunit.

Very good story, complete with Christmas carols as Barnaby drags around, throwing out forms and trying to be polite to the superintendent, even after Jones tells the inspector that Barnaby considers all the team-building activities "rubbish." Recommended.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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