Tuesday, 13 January 2015

In Praise of Mayo.

I made a humungous discovery last night. I discovered that YouTube has episodes of Mayo available for me to watch again, about ten years after they were first shown on the TV.

Mayo is one of my all time favourite cop shows (or ‘detective dramas’ as we prefer to call them in the Old Country. It’s just that more Americans than Brits read the blog these days, so sometimes I like to pay homage to the fact by talking their language. I’m grateful. I am. Note, however, that the preferred Brit term is alliterative and therefore more sophisticated. But still…)

Strictly speaking, Mayo isn’t actually a drama. It’s more of an intelligent spoof masquerading as a drama. It’s quirky and stylishly presented, with slightly oddball main characters and a wealth of subtle humour. I’m convinced it’s why only one series was ever made. It was simply too good for a mainstream audience.

And the leading character – Mayo himself – is my kind of detective. In the first episode, a murder has been committed in the grounds of an expensive private clinic and he’s interviewing the Principal. The Principal is a wealth-obsessed psychotherapist dressed all in white and smooth as chocolate of the same colour. He’s cocky, evasive, possessed of a phony mid-Atlantic accent, much given to hip mannerisms and street-speak, and utterly vomit-inducing. He points Mayo to a large sign in his office which says:

NO Special Relationship’s

‘Why the apostrophe?’ asks the detective.

‘I’m sorry.’

‘It’s a plural not a possessive. There shouldn’t be an apostrophe.’

‘I have more important things to worry about than the sign writing.’

‘OK, but you’re the one who looks stupid.’

Or something like that. As I said, Mayo is my kind of detective. If you can tear yourself away from all things Hallmark for an hour, you can watch him here:

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