The CSI Trilogy: Miami

The show opens with a woman trying desperately to escape from… something? It’s not clear just what, but it’s bad enough that she’s driving on four flat tires. Her mother turns up at the police station, looking for help, and finds Horatio, the person in which the concept of ‘help’ lives. They quickly find the abandoned bar, but no sign of the girl. Looks like a mystery’s afoot, right after the credits!

Oh, and in a weird note – the car is found by an army guy.

For no clear reason. Weird, right?

At the crime scene they find some blood, proof that she was kidnapped by a guy, and that she’d recently driven over a set of extreme tire damage spikes. We immediately cut back to the lab, where Jesse is hitting a dummy head with various blunt instruments, trying to find out just how the blood spatter on the ground was created.

Because that’s the best way to be spending your time when there’s a kidnapping going on.

Hilariously, the first thing he tries out is a baseball bat, which caves the dummy head right in. Um… of course it does. It’s a baseball bat. Was there brain all over the road, Jesse? No? Well then the kidnapper didn’t use a baseball bat, did he?

Also, and I’m not sure why this is, Jesse does all this while wearing a lab coat-

Which he’s going to have to launder, rather than a plastic smock that he can just rinse off. I’m aware that fake blood stains on white cloth is more visually interesting than drips of fake blood running down yellow plastic, but should that really be the lab’s highest priority?

Following a lead from a parking stub found in the kidnappee’s car, the black lab tech badgers some information out of a valet-

Wait, hold on a minute. Why is the black lab tech asking questions of witnesses? I know there’s a ridiculous amount of crossover between technicians and cops on this show, what with the same people who run DNA tests frequently interviewing suspects and all, but black guy doesn’t have a gun, or a badge, and we’ve never had the slightest suggestion that he’s in any way a cop.

The ‘real’ police head inside, in the form of Smuggy and and girl whose name I don’t know. They find out that the kidnappee’s room was paid for by Jimmy, a small-time ‘modelling agent’. They all go to search the kidnappee’s room together, because it makes sense to bring a suspect to a possible crime scene. Sexual deviancy rears its ugly head, as it turns out that the kidnappee was into voluntary suffocation with plastic bags, or at least that’s what Jimmy claims… Of course, Jimmy isn’t accused of murder, so who knows?

Just seconds later they find DNA evidence proving that a businessman was in the kidnappee’s hotel room, but since they instantly accuse him of murder, we can ignore him, except for insofar as he confirms that the kidnappee was working as a prostitute for Jimmy. A more promising lead turns up when petty criminals use the kidnappee’s credit card in a local bar. This leads the team to the place the purse was dropped, and the severed arm that lays nearby!

Okay, first off, ick… and secondly, do severed limbs turn grey in one day? Because I profoundly did not know that if it’s true. A birthmark on the arm seems to match the photo, but then they find a severed leg from a week earlier! That means there are two dead girls! Nooooooo!

Of course, this leads to one of those amazing grief-porn sequences of Horatio nobly comforting the victim’s family, so it’s not all bad.

Socrates Poole confirms that not only is that the kidnappee’s arm, but that it was severed while she was alive! And that she was beaten with a tire iron. While Jimmy’s tire iron is clean, a second tire iron left at the valet’s station is covered with blood! The attendant confesses that he flattened the tires on the car, but claims that he didn’t kill her. Apparently the team really believes him, because they bring in Jimmy, but not the attendant.

Wait, if her tires were all shredded when she got into the car, why did she drive out to the everglades? If she was frantically running away from someone who sabotaged her car (but left it in otherwise working order…) why not just drive to a police station to report them, or a garage to get it fixed? Who drives ten miles on rims, out into the middle of nowhere, for no reason?

Hey, look, British Guy is back! And he lets us know that, according to science, one of the corpses was in radioactive salt flats… like the ones they have out in Vegas!

They get on the phone with Lawrence Fishburne in the hopes of identifying the victim. It turns out he’s already on the case! The victim’s name is Samantha, and she matches the kidnappee’s profile identically! One victim’s arm was removed and dumped, and the other victim lost a leg… looks like someone’s building a reverse Frankenstein!

Larry arrives at the crime scene, and he and Horatio do a little establishing dialogue to confirm that all the people in the CSI world know each other, then it’s back to science! It seems that animal tracks suggest that bears dragged the pieces of the corpse away! Which is profoundly disgusting!

Everyone keeps talking to Larry like he’s famous for having written an important book. This is something I’d know about if I watched CSI, right?

In addition to the book, Larry is also an expert in knives, and is able to state that the limbs were definitely severed with a clever… so the killer must be a butcher! Or restaurant owner with experience butchering meat!

Of course, that’s too huge a net to cast, and he’s got to work in both Miami and Vegas. Really, this is going to be an impossible case, unless of course there’s a high profile butcher/chef, who has a series of meat locker-themed restaurants where the hacks sides of beef into pieces in front of crowds, then cooks them while you wait.

But what are the odds of such a preposterously disgusting thing…

Right. CSI. I forgot.

The Butcher, Prison Break’s Sucre, claims to no know the victims, but then gets really freaked out when they want to touch his knives, making him look incredibly guilty. Which is confirmed when there turns out to be human blood on his cleaver! A montage fails to confirm the origin of the blood, making its existence fairly pointless. It looks like they’ll have to go elsewhere for proof, like the band-aid on the butcher’s hand, for example.

They test his blood in another montage (that’s two in three minutes, if you’re counting) and confirm that the butcher has the exact same rare strain of Hep C as one of the victims – it seems his butchering wasn’t as sanitary or safe as you might hope. The butcher confesses right away – he doesn’t kill people, but he owes favors to a gang, and when they ask him to dispose of a body, he does it.

Um, you know, you could have just claimed that you had sex with her. From your gang connections you assumed she was working as a prostitute. That wouldn’t have left them with much proof. He also claims not to have been involved with the kidnappee’s dismemberment, which they believe. For no reason other than that there’s nine minutes left in the episode.

Out in the ‘glades’ Smuggy and Black Guy run into a bear, who’s quickly tranqed by Jesse, who was the only one of them who thought to bring a dart gun. Of course, Smuggy had a real gun, which he didn’t immediately draw, so that’s a little stupid. Even stupider is the fact that they’re not all accompanied by rangers, since they were specifically looking for bear that dragged body parts away. What did they plan on doing when they found it?

They come across a severed foot, which proves to have been crudely torn off the body. It contains all the evidence they need to convict Larry, since he’d sweat onto her open wounds while he was cutting her up.

Again. Ick.

Larry confesses that he was working for the same vicious gang as the butcher, and that it’s their policy to murder any prostitute who wants to stop working for them. He’s also too afraid to speak out against the gang, leaving the identity of the person who disposed of the body an enduring mystery.

What’s that? They story’s not over yet? That’s right, even though a young woman and her creepy boyfriend were at the dump site, and using the dead girl’s credit cards, it doesn’t occur to anyone that they might have been involved in this whole body-dumping thing? Seriously?

Apparently it doesn’t, allowing the two to escape to another city. Which one?

I guess that means I’ve got to watch another one of these today, doesn’t it?

Aw, hell.

And, just for the record, they never even attempted to explain why someone would go driving off into the everglades with four flat tires rather than just drive to a police station or garage.

Just saying, this is a terrible show.

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