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Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Death in Paradise Casting News

I can't be the only one to be disappointed by the announcement that Ben Miller's leaving his role as DI Richard Poole sometime during the third series of Death in Paradise. He'll be replaced by Kris Marshall of My Family fame. While the article doesn't make clear whether the decision to leave was Miller's, I suspect it was from things I've read in the past. However, I can't say with certainty that I'll still watch the show after he leaves.

For starters, what is Kris Marshall's character going to be? If he's a carbon copy of Poole then what's the point? Poole works as a character simply because of Miller. I don't think he would be as amusing in the hands of other actors. And if the new character isn't a carbon copy of Poole then the fish-out-of-water scenario disintegrates completely. There may be a middle ground in there somewhere but I'm struggling to see it.

Another irritating aspect of this decision is the fact that the slow-burning love story between Poole and DS Camille Bordey (Sara Martins) hasn't been resolved and now, if it is, it'll only be as a precursor to Miller's leaving. I feel a bit cheated actually - as a viewer I wanted the pay-off of awkward romance. This is television, not film. You don't have to end with the 'happy' ending, you should run with it sometimes.

I would've preferred that if Miller wanted to leave them to end the show completely instead. As things stand, this announcement makes it sound like they're clinging onto something that got a hefty chunk of the viewing figures but disregarding a couple of the vital components that got it those figures. I'm not saying the gorgeous location and escapism didn't add to the appeal, but the hackneyed Agatha Christie style of detection wouldn't have worked for anyone but Miller.

I'll probably watch up until Miller leaves then cross it off my list. I may, of course, be proven wrong.

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