Page 1 of 3
This Welsh murder mystery series starring Philip Madoc showcases a couple excellent performances, but not too much else....
Acorn Media / 2040 Minutes / 1994-2004 / Unrated / Street Date: March 19, 2013
A Mind to Kill was originally filmed in both English and Welsh. Many of us have spent copious hours in front of talking television boxes enjoying the detective skills of British crime-solvers, but this series – which ran from 1994 to 2004 – is arguably the great Welsh drama of its age (its Welsh title is Yr Heliwr – we get a glimpse of it as a bonus feature here). This begs the question, then: how good is it?
Well, its anchor is particularly sturdy. Philip Madoc’s performance as Detective Chief Inspector Noel Bain is a steely, deeply multi-faceted turn, and the guy’s a marvel. Juggling both his occupational duties and troubles at home – the guy has recently lost his wife as the show kicks in, and relations with his daughter Hannah are tricky at best – his steady frown and piercing eyes make him an entirely engaging leader through the bloody halls of A Mind to Kill’s murder-mystery narratives.
Yet while this might be the ultimate Welsh show on the market, at the end of the day, A Mind to Kill really is just another crime drama. Once you start an episode, you’ll want to know whether Bain and his team will solve the crime or not, but with so many other detective dramas on the market, with the exception of a few excellent performances, this monstrous TV-on-DVD set doesn’t offer enough to be wholly commendable. Maybe Yr Heliwr works better….