Having solved the death of Sylvia Carter, DI Jack Frost now focuses on the murder of a prominent local surgeon, Dr. Helena Gibson who was found in a plastic bag in a truckload of medical waste. According to the pathologist, she was killed with a blow to the head from a blunt instrument. Many at the hospital didn't like the woman including the hospital administrator, Jameson and several members of her surgical team including Dr. Retnick from whom she was demanding a letter of resignation. She had also recently had a run-in with a parent whose young son inexplicably died in post-operative care. In fact, there is an investigation into an abnormally large number of post-operative deaths at Denton General but as Frost learns, everyone who dies seems to have done so while occupying bed #5. DS Terence Reid is in hospital having been beaten in a public washroom. Frost is certain it has to do with his earlier investigation of Tim Hamilton, a university student from a well-off family who could ...Written by
David Tristan Birkin, who played Tim Hamilton in this episode, appeared in two episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation as two different members of the Picard family. In the season 4 episode Family, he played Jean-Luc Picard's (Patrick Stewart) nephew René; and in the season 6 episode Rascals, he played a young version of Picard himself. See more »
So worth giving the benefit of the doubt for
As has been said by me numerous times already, 'A Touch of Frost' is a personal favourite of mine, and one of my favourite shows from the detective/mystery genre. Do have a preference perhaps for the earlier-mid-show episodes over the later ones, but none of the episodes are less than watchable and none do anything to embarrass the show.
So much appeals about 'A Touch of Frost'. Love the mix of comedy (mostly through Frost's snide comments and quips) and dark grit, the tension between rebellious Jack Frost and by-the-book Mullet which has led to some humorous moments, how he interacts with the rest of the staff, the deft mix of one or two cases and Frost's personal life, how Frost solves the cases, the production values, music and of course David Jason in one of his best roles.
There may have been people initially sceptical about whether the show would work, and with Jason (a mainly comedic actor) in a departure from usual in the lead role. Scepticism very quickly evaporated, with the first season containing three consistently great episodes, even with the darker and grittier approach with less humour, that established the tone and characterisation so brilliantly so early on with no signs of finding-their-feet. Seasons 2 and 3 continued that high standard, "Appropriate Adults" and "Stranger in House" particularly being show highlights. Season 4 was also very good, particularly "Paying the Price" and "Deep Waters", the weakest "Unknown Soldiers" still being pretty good. All four episodes of Season 5 were brilliant, especially "Penny for the Guy" and "No Other Love". Season 6 wasn't quite as consistent, but all episodes ranged from good to great, the best being "Keys to the Car".
"Benefit of the Doubt" is the second of four two parters on 'A Touch of Frost', and it is every bit as wonderful as the first two parter episode from Season 7 "Line of Fire". Can be iffy about episodes being split into half, having been done with variable execution on 'Lewis' for example, but not here. The first part of "Benefit of the Doubt" was outstanding, the second part is every bit as wonderful.
It's a very well made episode as to be expected. It matches the dark, gritty tone of the episode beautifully with atmospheric lighting and the stylish way it's shot. The music is haunting without being over-bearing.
The script is well written, with a few very amusing quips from Frost, and is thought-provoking with lots of things you don't expect. The story is absorbing with a good deal happening while not rushing through it or trying to do too much. Plenty of suspense and intrigue, with a shocking and somewhat violent end and everything tied up very neatly without being too pat.
Frost is a remarkably well-established character , and one cannot help love his interaction with the rest of the officers and his chemistry with Bruce Alexander's stern and by-the-book Mullet, who constantly despairs of Frost's unconventional approach. Frost's new partner is a good character and works well with Frost.
Jason is superb as always and everybody else is every bit as good. Bruce Alexander, Robert Glenister and Joanne Froggart being standouts.
Overall, wonderful second part to an outstanding two-parter. Any worries regarding two-parters have been proved completely wrong with 'A Touch of Frost'. 10/10 Bethany Cox
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