Crime drama series El C.I.D. channelled into the world of the Costa Del Crime which in the late 1980’s and 90’s was never out of the papers thanks to Spain’s extradition treaty (or lack of it) with the UK which allowed many a Brit villain to flee to sunnier climbs.
The series began with police clerk Douglas Bromley being forced into early retirement and using the proceeds of his pay out to make a snap decision to buy a yacht and move to Spain – tagging along with him is best friend Bernard Blake, a C.I.D. officer who has had enough of the bureaucracy surrounding his job. Settling into life on the Costa Del Sol near Marbella the pair soon find themselves working as privarte detectives helping out local P.I. Delgado and his daughter Mercedes. After two seasons Blake departed and Bromley was joined by his daughter Rose for the third and final season.
Other regulars included the laid back restaurant owner Frank and the far from laid back Metcalf who was in charge of the Marina where Douglas moored his boat (which was called El C.I.D.) and bad guy Gus who had it in for Blake owing to the fact that he was responsible for the arm that Gus lost whilst trying to retrieve stolen diamonds from a crocodile enclosure at a zoo.
Reasonably popular and well remembered El C.I.D. benefited from great playing from John Bird and Alfred Molina as Bromley and Blake as well as top supporting players that included the fab Tony Haysgarth, Donald Churchill and Kenneth Cranham. The theme tune tune, performed by Georgie Fame, was very reminiscent of In The Midnight Hour by Wilson Pickett.
Jimmy McGovern contributed scripts to the first two seasons.
UK / ITV – Granada / 19×60 minute episodes / Broadcast 7 February 1990 – 2 March 1992
Creators: Chris Kelly, Iain Roy / Theme Music: Georgie Fame / Producer: Matthew Bird / Executive Producer: Sally Head
John Bird as Douglas Bromley
Donald Churchill as Metcalf
Alfred Molina as Blake (seasons 1 and 2)
Kenneth Cranham as Gus Mercer
Tony Haygarth as Frank
Gabrielle Cowburn as Trish
Niven Boyd as Graham
Amanda Redman as Rosie Bromley (season 3)
Simon Andreu as Delgado
Maria Isbert as Senora Sanchez
SEASON ONE 7 Feb – 14 Mar 1990
1. COPPING OUT
2. SPANISH EYES
3. DOG DAYS
4. THE PRICE OF LOVE
5. A PROPER COPPER
6. GETTING EVEN
SEASON TWO 1 Jan – 12 Feb 1991
1. CHRISTMAS SPIRIT
2. PIECE OF CAKE
3. IN THE ROUGH
4. PARADISE MISLAID
5. THURSDAY’S CHILD
6. ALL GROWN UP AND NOWHERE TO GO
7. TICKET TO RIDE
SEASON THREE 27 Jan – 2 Mar 1992
1. MAKING AMENDS
2. NOTHING IS FOREVER
3. MY BROTHER’S KEEPER
4. WHO NEEDS ENEMIES?
5. DAY OF THE GATO
6. THE LONE STRANGER
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