My Life is Murder: Series 2 (2022)
5th October 2022
Starring as PI Alexa Crowe, a former investigator of Melbourne PD with an uncanny ability to peer deeply into the darker quirks of human nature, screen favourite Lucy Lawless returns for another series of one of Australia's most popular crime dramas.
Fearless and unapologetic, Alexa leans into her unique set of skills to unlock the secrets behind the most baffling crimes and series two sees her return to her native New Zealand hometown after years living in Australia where she's called upon to investigate some puzzling murders by the charismatic DI Harry Henare.
Alexa is soon joined in Auckland by data analyst and partner-in-crime-solving, Madison Feliciano, who's closer than ever to her mentor - quite literally, as she winds up living in Alexa's apartment. But to truly make a fresh start, Alexa must deal with the family troubles she's avoided for decades, starting with her wayward brother Will.
This series finds Alexa investigating the death of a drag queen, a museum curator's murder, the mysterious demise of an ambitious young winemaker and a very cold case of a chef found dead in his walk-in freezer. Can she endure a survival expert murder case and help in the death of a self-help guru?
- Episode 1: Call of the Wild - When a woman shoots a stranger at point-blank range by Auckland Harbor, it looks like an open-and-shut case. But the inquiry becomes anything but simple when investigator Alexa Crowe takes on the case
- Episode 2: Oceans Apart - Alexa's investigation into the death of a surfing champion takes her back to an old childhood haunt. But what is the victim's influencer girlfriend trying to hide? And why is Alexa so reluctant to spend time at one of the world's best beaches?
- Episode 3: All That Glitters - Alexa's personal and professional lives collide when she investigates the death of a drag queen whose star was on the rise
- Episode 4: Look, Don't Touch - Alexa is confronted by her own history when she investigates the death of a museum curator
- Episode 5: Crushed Dreams - Alexa will need all five senses to solve the mysterious death of an ambitious young winemaker
- Episode 6: Sleep No More - A frosty reception awaits Alexa when she investigates how the chef at a resort died in his own walk-in freezer
- Episode 7: All the Better to See You - All the world's a stage when Alexa investigates the murder of an actor in the middle of a live performance
- Episode 8: Hidden Gems - Alexa must sort fact from fiction when a compulsive liar confesses to a murder at a high-end jeweler
- Episode 9: Wild Life - Harry asks Alexa to look into the case of his friend, who is accused of murdering a survival expert
- Episode 10: Pleasure and Pain - Alexa investigates the death of a self-help guru and finds herself in a cat-and-mouse game with the victim's mysterious wife
For a terrestially broadcasted and streamed programme the picture is reasonable enough with a decent amount of detail. However, use a DVD player to up-scale the image and view on a large screen and you'll soon find images turning grainy and suffering from a fair amount of pixelisation from the rather average bit-rate.
All in all, it's pretty standard stuff for a lengthy television production which requires some good compression - and low bitrates - to allow it to fit the entire series onto two DVDs. Obviously, by ensuring the release is covered over two instead of three discs saves money, but that saving can come at a cost - and that cost is the ultimate quality of the transfer.
It is hardly surprising to also discover that the sound is presented as a simple 192 Kbps Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack. It's more than capable for what the production requires, with the dialogue clear enough throughout, along with a well balanced musical score not drowning everything out.
It goes without saying that there's no need for your surround system here - your soundbar or television speakers will be more than adequate enough here.
Spread out over two discs, the ten episodes are presented via a static and silent menu system. The episodes can be selected individually, or if you're in the mood for a binge watch, they can also be played in one go. The extras are presented on the second disc, with a gallery and an interview with Lucy Lawless.
Whilst the Gallery isn't really that much to write home about, running at over 30 minutes, the Conversation with Lucy Lawless should be a conversation with Lucy Lawless, not the interviewer - which is Jameela Jamil. Unfortunately, Jameela spends most of the time talking about herself and women's empowerment. Whilst it's a worthy cause to talk about, and something she actively supports, it's not something I want to hear about here, and I soon got bored and gave up watching. It was a pity really as I was hoping to find out more about the series and the scenic locations used in the programme.
Never the less, for what could have been a simple vanilla release, it's always good to see DVDs still getting bonus material which fans may not usually get to see from their usual television broadcasts and/or streaming.
If you can get past the fact the main character's name is Alexa, and that your smart speaker is in danger of being rather active throughout any viewing, My Life is Murder is very easy watching, both in the writing, the light-hearted tone of the series and, rather surprisingly, the performances too - along with an interesting array of guest stars. There's some stunning backdrops too - which will certainly help the tourist industry.
Whilst I'd heard of the series I'd not seen any of the episodes, so I'm a bit late to the party with watching and reviewing season two. Nevertheless, I managed to pick up enough of the character backgrounds to understand their places in the series - handy for any series late comers. It's all very afternoon television - albeit one which is 15 rated - and it reminds me of a good old fashioned weekly murder mystery with a twist at the end. It's all very much like an episode of Columbo, and it's no surprise to discover that its popularity has resulted in it being renewed for a third season.
Even though Acorn also have released their own streaming service, it's still wonderful to see them continuing with physical releases such as the recent release of Rules of the Game and The Cane Field Killings. Fortunately, if you don't subscribe to Acorn TV, you can now enjoy this entertaining series on DVD.
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