Midsomer Murders: Season 14, Episode 8

A Rare Bird (11 Jan. 2012)

TV Episode  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 139 users  
Reviews: 2 user | 1 critic

Barnaby and Jones investigate whether competition between ornithology enthusiasts led to murder.


(as Nick Laughland)


(screenplay), (characters)
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Episode complete credited cast:
Jason Hughes ...
Tamzin Malleson ...
Nina Morgan
Alexander Hanson ...
Patrick Morgan (as Alex Hanson)
Paul Bigley ...
Tim Whitley
Ralph Ford
Michael Hipsman
Dave Foxely
George Napier
Dr. Markham
Amanda Lawrence ...
Olivia Carter
Ella Al-Khalil Coyle ...
Aimee Whitley


When bird-watcher Ralph Ford claims to have seen a blue-crested hoopoe - thus winning him the year's list contest - other members of the Midsomer-in-the-Marsh ornithological society are angry, especially society chairman Patrick Morgan, who, later that night is lured to his death by a call on Ford's stolen phone. Morgan was generally unpopular in the society and farmer George Napier benefits by the death as Morgan intended to save wetlands he intended to drain whilst his Russian widow Nina, a former ballerina, is pregnant, and since her husband had had a vasectomy he is not the father. The real father is the next victim - will a third person meet their death at the hands of one who has killed two people as well as a rare bird? Written by don @ minifie-1

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Crime | Drama | Mystery


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Release Date:

11 January 2012 (UK)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?


[first lines]
Patrick Morgan: There we go. You're a beauty, aren't you?
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User Reviews

Fun, sit back, relax and enjoy
12 March 2012 | by See all my reviews

I thoroughly enjoyed this episode and will gladly purchase when the DVD comes out. The birdwatchers were portrayed with the crazy eccentricity that MM does so well. Two actors stole the show; Amanda Lawrence and James Dreyfus. Amanda plays the strong, headfast and lovelorn Olivia Carter carrying a torch for the protagonist. My favourite scene is her ramming her gaudy flower and bird decorated bike into the legs of the middle-aged admirers followed by the haughty pulling down of her skirt down whilst climbing on. The subsequent reaction of the two men to this …..priceless. The last time I saw James Dreyfus was in Gimme Gimme so to see him play such a different character was a joy and he brought so much to the role.

Now the bad news – I cannot stand the character John Barnaby. Sorry I have tried very hard to but he is too smug and patronizing. There is absolutely nothing endearing about him. His condescending remarks to Jones "you would be out of depth in a puddle" and his manner towards him (at one stage buying two ice-creams and then walking off leaving Jones to pay for them) are plain outright annoying. Memo to writers – it's not funny… you are just making him look like a smug prat with a stupid dopey smile. It is also very distracting that there is not one tiny bit of chemistry between John Barnaby and his wife Sarah. They are unbelievable as a couple and they don't gel; something is just not right. In this episode for the first time that I have seen, there is reference to them actually being a "physical" couple if you get my point; but it just doesn't work and seems forced and wrong. It was as if the writers threw it in to remind us that they are couple because they sure don't seem like one at the moment. Nothing against Neil Dudgeon as I've seen him in other great roles, but I just don't like him as Barnaby. At the moment the series is a great showcase for supporting actors like Amanda and James in this episode, which is wonderful. Barnaby is so annoying and Jones is now some tepid background presence so this gives a wonderful opportunity to all these wonderful guest actors to shine. I say send John and Sarah off to another posting..bye guys don't let the door slam on your heels on the way out - and bring Troy back to work alongside Jones. Now that would be perfect.

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