Pot­ter’s name­sake a wizard for hire

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Tv -

HE’S called Harry, he’s a wizard and the sim­i­lar­i­ties with a cer­tain school­boy pretty much end there. Harry Dres­den ( Paul Black­thorne) is a mag­i­cal gumshoe, a Chicago- based wizard for hire who gets called in to in­ves­ti­gate things that go bump in the night. He lives in a dingy ground- floor apart­ment with what could loosely be de­scribed as his part­ner, a cur­mud­geonly 1000- year- old ghost called Bob who sounds re­mark­ably like a North Amer­i­can do­ing a Bri­tish ac­cent badly and dwells in a rune- cov­ered skull.

Harry is not one of those flashy wizards but a low- key prac­ti­tioner of the dark arts whose main pro­tec­tion is a bracelet given to him by his mother. Un­for­tu­nately, this did not prove strong enough to pro­tect him from the cut­throat world of rat­ings- driven tele­vi­sion. Tonight’s episode is the sec­ond of only 11 made be­fore the se­ries was axed.

Which is a bit of a pity, given it showed po­ten­tial. De­spite its sup­posed lo­ca­tion, The Dres­den Files is ac­tu­ally Cana­dian made — there is no short­age of peo­ple both ‘‘ owt’’ and ‘‘ abowt’’ — and this means a cer­tain amount of wry hu­mour.

The re­sult is that Harry is nei­ther a know- all Fox Mul­der nor a vam­pires­lay­ing Buffy. He’s more a Colombo who knows a few tricks and is linked to the world of the su­per­nat­u­ral through his mother’s fam­ily. His re­mark­able tal­ent for get­ting beaten up ap­pears to be matched only by the long queue of peo­ple lin­ing up to bat­ter him sense­less.

Like all good PIs, Harry has an ex­cel­lent con­tact in the po­lice depart­ment: the feisty and not unattrac­tive lieu­tenant Con­nie Mur­phy. And, like all cops who have deal­ings with peo­ple who dab­ble in oc­cult, she thinks he’s crazy. This doesn’t stop

Wizard of odd: Paul Black­thorne stars in

Bob sounds like a North Amer­i­can do­ing a Bri­tish ac­cent badly

her from hand­ing over the oc­ca­sional sen­si­tive doc­u­ment and it cer­tainly doesn’t pre­vent Harry from us­ing her name to get what he needs.

In tonight’s episode we’re looking at an an­tique dealer haunted by the ghost of a daugh­ter mur­dered dur­ing the theft of an an­cient Egyp­tian tablet. Harry, who is not fond of jobs in­volv­ing ghosts, soon finds him­self in hot wa­ter af­ter his at­tempts to di­vine the ghost’s prob­lems lead him to the home of a mil­lion­aire busi­ness­man.

But it quickly tran­spires that all is not what it seems. There’s been a bit of body swap­ping go­ing on and the girl’s mur­derer has trans­ferred his con­scious­ness into the mil­lion­aire’s body. The sit­u­a­tion de­te­ri­o­rates when the mur­derer leaps into Mur­phy’s body and Harry has to find a way to get him out.

This is no Mil­len­nium or Su­per­nat­u­ral and it isn’t a great sur­prise that it was axed. How­ever, it has enough re­deem­ing fea­tures to lament its pass­ing to the other side of the veil.

Steve Creedy

The Dres­den Files

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.