Continuing this year's season finale guide, today I'm going to be looking at the final US episodes of the latest seasons of the CSI shows: CSI, CSI: Miami and CSI: New York.
Despite the promised tension of the potential death of a much-loved character, the finale lacked any real kind of tension. Instead, it was business as usual as the team investigated various crimes while Character X languished on his or her death bed, flat-lining every time an advert break was due. However, the ending lacked life-and-death tension, but had an emotional tension instead that makes you wonder what direction the show will go in next year. Still the best of the CSI shows, but they really don't know how to open or close a season well, I'll tell you that much.
With the promised conclusion of the “mole” storyline, the death of two 'regulars' and much more promised for this episode, it comes as no surprise to learn that it was all a bit of a letdown and astonishingly stupid at the same time. That's CSI: Miami for you. Everything's wrapped up nicely at the end with the traditional Miami message - the legal system is stacked against the victims and if only David Caruso was in charge and allowed to kill all the bad people, the world would be fine. A foreign trip and a reunion is promised for the start of next season, so long-time viewers are going to be all a tizzy; everyone else will be vaguely bored.
Tension factor: 3/10 (irregular viewers); 5/10 (regular viewers)
CSI: New York
On paper, this should have been quite exciting. But then so should the previous episode have been, in which a former favourite gets burnt alive. But it wasn't. This suggests there's something wrong in the whole New York set-up (maybe the direction; maybe the cast) that needs some fixing. It's also becoming clear that what the producers and cast would really like is a show about Mac (Gary Sinise), the ex-marine, and the skills he brings to everyday New York from the army. Sinise, whose band goes around playing gigs to support the US armed forces, would clearly like that too, and the show would certainly be more interesting than the cast-off forensics plots that CSI proper didn't want and anything involving the other 'characters'. So quite dull as a finale. But unlike Miami and regular CSI, which both had life-threatening scenarios for regulars, this don't cop out (ooh, what a pun) and someone is still in the poorly bed at the end. If you're a CSI:NY fan, it'll be a tense summer. Otherwise, you'll find it very easy to resist its pull.
Tension factor: 1/10 (irregular viewers); 7/10 (regular viewers)