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DVD Review: CSI – Miami, The Ninth Season

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When the first CSI series made its way to TV, producer Jerry Bruckheimer worried about a copycat series stealing his hit show’s thunder. There was no way he was going to let somebody else profit from a concept he rightfully stole from shows like the original Hawaii Five-O. So, he turned on that ol’ proverbial green light and approved the commission of a spin-off series. Thus, CSI: Miami came into existence rather quick-like. In fact, I suppose you could even say that it was rushed into production. What’s really interesting about that is that, even nine years down the line, that feeling of hastiness is still very much in effect.

Honestly, I can’t imaging how this show has lasted as long as it has. Generally, when a show jumps the shark and turns into a parody of itself, it ceases to be. Period. End of story. In the case of Bruckheimer’s discomfiting forensic series with the outrageously over-the-top David Caruso, however, it only seems to grow stronger with each reality-bending plot, general lack of logic, and that abundance of awful acting to boot.

Frankly, I have to wonder if the show isn’t set in some weird alternate universe, and nobody ever bothered to inform us that. It’s the only explanation I can come up with to justify how Horatio Caine’s magical, omnipresent Hummer can all of the sudden appear out of nowhere to put an end to a foot chase (and deliver a corny quip) in almost every episode. Or why David Caruso takes his damn sunglasses off when he gets out of his vehicle with the tinted windows instead of removing them whilst he’s driving. It would also account for the existence of the incredibly advanced technology the men and women use here, and how they seem to go from predicting the future to possessing rudimentary intelligence in a flash. I could go on, but I won’t.

CSI: Miami – The Ninth Season opens with the less-than-exciting conclusion to the Season Eight finale, wherein we lose one cast member (Eddie Cibrian, who was only on the show for one season anyway) to a psychotic antagonist. We also lose a lot of screen time from second-billed Emily Procter, who is only shown from the shoulders up to hide the fact she was pregnant when she filmed most of this season. Boston Legal’s Christian Clemenson all but becomes a regular here, though he’s still not part of the opening credit crawl.

Frankly, Clemenson’s presence makes the show rather tolerable (and, is it me, or did the writers have him make a lot of hand jokes in this outing?), which is hard to do when that David Caruso feller is chewing up every inch of scenery around him. As always, Caruso’s hammy acting is made to stand out that much further by some truly terrible writing and unnecessary photographic/special effects that were already passé even when CSI: Miami was a new show in 2002.

Additionally, Caruso’s character has become more abusive towards his suspects here. In one episode, he locks his office door and closes the blinds before administering an offscreen beating to a bad guy. Really? In this day and age, that would throw your case right out. But no, apparently, Lt. Horatio Caine thinks he’s Jack Lord now. He even uses the classic “Book ‘em!” line. Fortunately, thought, for all the suffering to be found here, there’s one episode (“Sleepless in Miami”) that emerges as being surprisingly decent. The rest of this show is nothing more than an ode to disorganized storytelling, though.

CBS/Paramount brings us all 22 episodes of facepalm-worthy programming on six discs in an anamorphic 1.78:1 ratio and with Dolby Digital 5.1 sound. A 2-Channel Spanish dub is also available, as are optional English (SDH) subtitles. Special features include deleted scenes and audio commentaries on select episodes, and a couple of behind-the-scenes featurettes.

In short, CSI: Miami – The Ninth Season is just like the eight seasons that preceded it: laughable, cringe-worthy nonsense. You might as well just set a bobblehead down in front of the TV and save your neck muscles the anguish of shaking your noggin back and forth.

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About Luigi Bastardo

Luigi Bastardo is the disgruntled alter-ego of a thirtysomething lad from Northern California who has watched so many weird movies since the tender age of 3 that a conventional life is out of the question. He currently lives in Chico, CA with four cats named Groucho, Harpo, Chico, and Margaret. Seriously.