Midsomer Murders (1997– )
7.2/10
291
5 user

A Dying Art 

The grand opening of a new Sculpture Park is marred by murder in the picturesque Midsomer village of Angel's Rise.

Director:

Matt Carter

Writers:

Jeff Povey (screenplay), Caroline Graham (based on characters by)
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Neil Dudgeon ... DCI John Barnaby
Gwilym Lee ... DS Charlie Nelson
Fiona Dolman ... Sarah Barnaby
Manjinder Virk ... Dr Kam Karimore
David Bamber ... Daniel Fargo
Charlotte Beaumont ... Helena Pitt
Jolyon Coy Jolyon Coy ... Fabian Monkford
David Gant ... Brandon Monkford
John Hollingworth ... Brin Dunne
Cara Horgan ... Rachel Monkford
Denis Lill Denis Lill ... Simeon Rowling
Cherie Lunghi ... Alexandra Monkford
Saskia Reeves ... Summer Pitt
Adrian Scarborough ... Tony Pitt
Cat Simmons ... Clemmy Staples
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Storyline

Brandon Monkford is found dead on top of a statue created by womanizing artist Lance Auden at the grand opening of Brandon's sculpture park. Suspects abound as his wife Alexandra was having an affair with art critic Daniel Fargo, the park would mean an end to his daughter Rachel's climbing centre and villagers led by Brin Dunne opposed the park on environmental grounds. The person with the most to gain, however, is Brandon's groundsman Tony Pitt, the sole beneficiary in his will, who annoys everybody - including his wife Summer - with his decision to carry on Brandon's vision and who predictably becomes the next victim. When a third corpse is found- like the others, attached to a statue in the park- Barnaby must discover who is truly practising a dying art. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 February 2016 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Saskia Reeves plays Summer Pitt in this episode. She previously played the role of Marcia Macintyre in episode 13.1, Midsomer Murders: The Sword of Guillaume (2010). See more »

Soundtracks

Main Theme
Composed by Jim Parker
Theremin played by Celia Sheen
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User Reviews

 
Season 18 at its best
14 May 2017 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

When in its prime (a vast majority of Seasons 1-9), 'Midsomer Murders' was a great show and one that is watched and re-watched frequently. Seasons 10-13 became more uneven, with three of the show's worst episodes coming from Seasons 11 and 13, but there were a few solid episodes and "Blood Wedding" and especially "Master Class" were gems.

After John Nettles retired and Neil Dudgeon and the new character of John Barnaby took over, 'Midsomer Murders' just hasn't been the same on the most part. Season 14 was a disappointment outside of "The Oblong Murders" and "A Sacred Trust", with "Echoes of the Dead" and "The Night of the Stag" being show low-points. Season 15 was inconsistent, being a case of starting promisingly and then took a three-episodes-in-a-row strange turn with "Written in the Stars" before finishing on a good note. Season 16 was mostly good, especially "Wild Harvest", with the only disappointment being "Let Us Prey". Season 17 was a mixed, with the first two episodes being watchable but uneven and the other two, particularly "A Vintage Murder", faring better.

Most of Season 18, from personal opinion, was rather unimpressive, "Breaking the Chain" and "Saints and Sinners" falling particularly flat. What a pleasant surprise to see an actual good episode in "A Dying Art", calling it Season 18 at its best is saying a lot.

Not that it's without foibles. Still not a fan of Kam at all, she has little personality and continues to be a condescending know-it-all. Nelson is likable enough but takes too much of a back-seat, and yes would have liked to have seen more of Sykes. The story is a good one, which is more than be said for most of the season, and its elements are done solidly, but have been better and with more spark elsewhere. The killer's identity is not a surprise, by 'Midsomer Murders' it's somewhat formulaic.

Production values cannot be faulted as usual however. It's beautifully and atmospherically shot with suitably picturesque scenery. The music fits perfectly, with some lush jauntiness and sometimes an ominous quality, and the haunting theme tune is one of the most memorable and instantly recognisable of the genre.

Scripting is thought-provoking and has a better balance of humour and grimness. The story is the most engaging, least ridiculous, most to the point and least padding filled of the season, with very few if any noticeable loose ends. The death toll is not too ordinary, nor outlandish, and despite the predictable identity of the killer there are far less far-fetched and convoluted motives of the show in general.

Cast is very good, Neil Dudgeon is the most enthusiastic he's been since the end of Season 17 and Gwilym Lee continues to have a likable charisma. The supporting cast is one of the strongest of the John Barnaby-era, with Ramon Tikaram fully deserving of the praise he's garnered and everybody else (with some familiar and talented names present) also being excellent.

Overall, a good episode and one of the few good ones of an unimpressive season. 7/10 Bethany Cox


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