It seems at the end of season 7 I proclaimed that I wouldn’t be returning to CSI:NY, that I’d grown too tired of the flip-flopping character development, the gratuitous ratings grabbing stunt casting, the financially obvious product placement and the utterly unremarkable storylines. Apparently I forgot all that and watched season 8 regardless.
The good news for you is that I’m not going to bother writing yet another version of the rant that I’ve produced reviewing the last two seasons. The bad news is that’s not because anything’s improved in CSI:NY, it’s just because I seem to care less and can’t really be bothered.
CSI:NY sits alongside NCIS as my choice of watching to accompany other tasks that only require half a brain – ironing, tidying, filing, accounting… I just watched the last episode of the season while kneading some bread dough. Both shows are good for this because not only do they not need concentration, but they actively discourage it. If you focus on the plot too much you might spot that it’s dumb. Instead if you just dial up your attention for the witty banter and dial it back down again for the exposition, you’re sufficiently amused and not too irritated.
CSI:NY ranks above its naval colleague simply because in comparison its characters are an exercise in careful development and subtle traits and emotions. I actually like most of the CSIs when they’re just chatting and doing their jobs, they all of course become epically irritating when they go off on some sort of self-righteous rant about justice or honour or professionalism or whatever, but most of the time they’re a fun bunch who have interesting (and consistent) relationships and who I would actually trust to investigate a crime without running the risk of screwing it up.
The plots remain dubious in the extreme, always relying on extraordinarily unlikely connections and minute traces of stuff . “I found this tiny flake of soil in the carpet, it’s possible it came in on the boots of the 15 police officers, but as it happens it’s found at only 1 specific place in the city where the person who appeared to be only tangentially connected to the case, but is coincidentally played by a big name guest star happened to mention visiting last month.”
Beyond all expectations, CSI:NY will be back for season 9, with 18 episodes to take it up to 200 episodes in total. I don’t think anyone anticipates it being renewed for season 10, but you never know. I’ll continue to watch it as long as I have ironing that needs doing.