CSI New York was a show that I’ve spent the last 4 years watching “just one more season” because it seemed certain to be cancelled at the end of the year. Neither the ratings nor critical praise lived up to its older sibling, and in the case of the praise, that really wouldn’t be a tough competition to beat. How it managed to get to nine seasons is one of the great questions for our time. Heaven only knows there was nowhere near enough character development, plot or creativity to fill 197 episodes. But it’s finally really been cancelled this time, and I can now finally stop watching.
Season 9 went by exactly the same way the others did, a roller-coaster of characters and plots swerving from unremarkable to annoying with just enough charm and humour scattered through to make it just about worth watching. The combination that frustrated me most was the sloppy police work and forensics in the field but a reliance on the tiniest scraps of evidence and scientific anomalies in the lab. Each case would come down the the perpetrator leaving microscopic traces of some sort of dirt that was only found in one place, or a hair that indicated a rare genetic condition. All found after 17 thousand police officers and CSI’s had clomped through the crime scene. OK the British forensics teams in their white jumpsuits and hair nets look pretty silly, but at least they give some degree of confidence they’re not contaminating everything left right and centre.
The characters suffer their usual mixture of blandness and sanctimony. Everyone getting nicely caught up in their own fiascos as girlfriends get abducted and goodness knows what else. After 9 years I should feel some sense of connection to the characters, but with the exception of the gloriously weird Sid the Coroner and Adam the Tech guy, I really couldn’t give a hoot about any of them. Flack can at least be relied on to provide good banter, but the rest of them never seemed to develop between 2 sentence clichés.
For all that, clearly the show did something right because I actually stuck it out for 9 years! Admittedly a lot of the was accompanying ironing, but I can’t deny that I seem to have passed 6 full days of my life with it on in the background. That really does tell you far more about me, than it does about the show though.