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There are some grisly murders that need solving on this Set 6 collection, but Trial and Retribution's best years might be behind it....
Acorn Media / 361 Minutes / 2008-2009 / Unrated / Street Date: January 1, 2013
Trial and Retribution - now starring David Hayman and Victoria Smurfit - started as a short, controlled blast of murder mystery programming, using feature-length running times to really let the nuances (and, often, creepiness) of their cases at hand to truly get under your skin. But for reason probably due to network infiltration, the format of the show changed, with Trial and Retribution reverting to a more commonplace 90-minute shape (usually in two parts).
Sure, the zing of the series was still there, but we TV viewers are a fickle bunch: if we were happy with things the way they were, any major shift away from that can make us grumpy. Throwing salt in this wound, though, is this Set 6 TV-on-DVD compilation, a set of mystery episodes that is woefully undernourished dramatically. In short, this four-pack of Trial and Retribution episodes is a bust.
It's still solid British crime drama programming, though, so even though Trial and Retribution: Set 6 is not even close to being one of Acorn's recent U.K.-mystery titles, its tales of Ferris Wheel accidents and jewelry heists nevertheless provide passable intrigue. One shouldn't jump in mid-stream here - go ahead and pop Set 1 on your rental queue instead - but for those of us who have been weathering the storms of Trial and Retribution's oscillating framework for years now, this quartet of episodes is worth sifting through.