It’s time to return to the fictional Caribbean island of Saint-Marie for another series of Death in Paradise mysteries. I was late in discovering the show and have been binge-watching it, writing these posts as I go.
In my previous post about the show I covered the third series which brought about the first changes to the show’s regular cast. This fourth series features some further changes with two departures and two additions.
Sergeant Best is the first to depart but, to my frustration, this has happened off screen in the gap between series three and four. Having invested in and liked the character it is a shame that he didn’t get a proper farewell.
I was a little better prepared for the second departure of the series as Camille is written out. While it is still pretty abrupt given that earlier episodes in the season were still playing with the possibility of a romance with Goodman, this is at least handled throughout the course of the story and the moment of departure feels satisfying, providing some closure.
Happily I liked both of the additions a lot, feeling that they both brought something new to the show. Joséphine Jobert is charming as DS Florence Cassell, establishing quite a different relationship with DI Goodman than her predecessor that focuses more on her professional skills than their interpersonal relationship. That being said, there are some nice moments between the pair that suggest strong mutual respect developing by the end of this series.
Officer J. P. Hooper is youthful and enthusiastic while adding a serious streak that makes him a solid foil for Dwayne. He gets quite a lot to do here and does grow a little over the series.
In terms of the cases I think that this raised the standard from the previous series. Several cases presenting interesting problems to solve, Swimming in Murder defeating me completely. Even the weaker cases possess interesting subplots and guest performances making for a consistently entertaining run of episodes.