Was it too clever for its own good?
Originally a staple of BBC1s Saturday night line-up in March and April 1997, "Crime Traveller" was one of the corporations few attempts at mainstream sci-fi since "Doctor Who". Recently they've returned to the genre with a vengeance with shows like "Life on Mars", but a decade ago, this show didn't last more than one season and eight episodes. It was headlined by former "Eastenders" star Michael French, and future "Red Dwarf" actress Chloe Annett. Annett plays Holly Turner, a police forensic scientist who keeps a time machine in her apartment. French is Jeff Slade, a maverick detective, who is the only other person who knows about this secret. Between them, they use the time machine to try and solve crimes. There are however a number of "Laws of Time" that don't make things so easy for the duo. For one thing, the machine can only send them back in time a few hours or a few days at most, and secondly, they have to be back at the machine at the exact moment they left or they will get caught in the "Loop of Infinity". Veteran actress Sue Johnston plays Turner and Slade's irritable boss, somewhat purplexed by how Slade continues to solve the most baffling of cases. A lot of the time the show is played for laughs, but alas, the viewing public at large never really had the chance to get into this show. Repeats are rare, but all eight episodes are now on DVD. It is actually almost as good as I remember it. Sometimes the memory can play tricks on you, and after spending years hunting down an old childhood favourite, you suddenly start thinking to yourself how it wasn't really that good after all. Sometimes I think that series creator and writer Anthony Horowitz was simply too clever for his own good. Time Travel can give viewers headaches, and some people don't like to THINK about what they are watching, they just like to be entertained. When you start playing with time travel, plots start to get rather complicated and some people just switch off. I'm a sci-fi fan and I liked this first time around, and now eleven years later in 2008, I'm still finding things to enjoy about this show. It finished before its time (no pun intended!).Read full review