In German with English subtitles. Alexander Bukow is a cop who doesn't mind working at the edge of the law to get results. His straight-laced partner, Katrin Koenig, is a control freak ... See full summary »
German crime series, centering around a succession of lawyers and a private investigator and former police officer, who typically team up to clear a client of the lawyer, who is usually an innocent suspect in a murder case.
Claus Theo Gärtner,
Currently there are three seasons running on MHz identified as Tatort: Cologne (crime scene, Cologne) going from 1998 to 2007 that feature Inspectors Max Ballauf and Freddy Schenk (actors Klaus Behrendt and Dietmar Bar). The two actors work well together and it's interesting to see them adapt to new technology and changes in police procedure. Those changes aren't part of the stories but just note how quickly things change.
At times Max and Freddie's personal issues can surface in an episode to add to building of their characters, and at times as crucial story points. Max has even been known to sleep with a suspect. Several episodes deal with social problems and the stories can be very gritty and the conclusions quite depressing.
At times both my wife and I yell at the screen when obviously bad conclusions are reached by the inspectors but you do have to fill about 90 minutes per episode. At times the episodes seem more about commenting on social issues rather than being solid mystery stories. In spite of some of these commentaries, the two forge ahead but they seem to get to finding the perp more by dumb luck than solid detective work. But they do doggedly pursue their quarry and usually catch the suspect.
Like any series, there are good episodes and disappointing ones but Max and Freddy are worth a look.
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