TV Detective World Series Round 1 – Grissom vs Doo

The excitement of the TV Detective World Series continues apace, with this week’s contest between two stalwarts of the genre:

Here we see two long serving pillars of justice and the law. Whether it’s a grisly murder or some kind of scary-costume-themed caper, between the two of them they would get the job done. But how will they do(o) when pitted head to head? You decide…

Round One – Car

Grissom eschews the over the top madness of his Miami counterpart’s vehicle choice. Rather than over-compensating with a General Motors Hummer, Grissom prefers to compensate just enough with a Chevrolet Tahoe, or a GMC Yukon, depending on what year it is. These no nonsense all-American 4x4s get him from A to B, whether B is a grisly desert crime scene or a grisly city-centre crime scene.

Doo travels from encounter to encounter in a bright blue van. Choosing style over subtlety, the van is painted in bright blue and green with orange lettering declaring it to be not simply ‘a’ but The Mystery Machine. Driven by Alpha-Male Fred, The Mystery Machine ferries Doo and his team wherever they are needed – whether that be a deserted fairground, a deserted mine or a deserted mansion on a hill.

Round Two – Being Based On The Famous Five

Grissom was the original televised Crime Scene Investigator. Focussed and determined, his analytical mind has been likened to Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes. It has also been said that he looks “a bit like one of the Baldwin’s. Not sure which”. But he has never been accused of being based upon children’s author Enid Blyton’s Famous Five books.

Doo on the other hand plays a sterling job here, because he and his colleagues were indeed based on the best-selling children’s novels of the 40s, 50s and 60s. Some of the details were lost in translation – the dog Timothy, for example, was going to have a larger role; there would also be more criminals pretending to be monsters in order to affect the price of real estate – but on the whole Scooby Doo was a re-imagining of a tale of four friends and their dog becoming embroiled in mysteries.

Round Three – Catchphrase

“The evidence never lies” – Grissom

Brooding and steely, Grissom must work in an environment where people quickly forget even the most fundamental lesson about what kind of things can and cannot lie as he is compelled to remind those around him that the evidence never lies at least four times each episode. The phrase is his mantra, his very sword and shield and keeps his work grounded in science and fact.

“Scooby Dooby Doo” – Doo

Doo’s catchphrase involves saying his full name. It is used as a victory salute, and often turns into a howl at the sky. It should be remembered that as Doo is a dog, the fact that he is able to enunciate even his own name is a truly remarkable feat that should hopefully see him pick up points in this round.

But what’s this? Closer inspection from the judges reveals that Doo’s nephew, a puppy that is perhaps six months old, has a perfect grasp of the English language – this casts Doo in a completely different light, and his language skills seem rudimentary by comparison.

Round Four – Legacy

Grissom was one of the pioneers of the Forensic Procedural Cop Show. He stood on the shoulders of the likes of Quincy, and proved that it was fine to have a TV Cop show that was just some scientists investigating stuff: CSI:NY/Miami, NCIS, Bones, Criminal Minds, Numb3rs, all followed in their wake. Grissom must take some responsibility for opening a door that brought CSI:Miami’s Horatio Caine into the world and looks to take a points hit in this round for the crime.

Doo on the other hand hasn’t been far from our screen since 1969. He has been revamped and re-imagined, had the stage stolen from him by his own nephew and seen some truly risable (one would imagine) motion pictures made in his honour. Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated premièred on Cartoon Network in 2010 and has been repeated around the world ever since. A strong, albeit stained legacy from everyone’s favourite van-based-crime-solving-cartoon-dog’s-uncle.

So there you have it. Voting closes in once month, and in the meantime visit our main website for all your murder mystery needs.

Next Time…

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