After the disappointing fifth season, the show's sixth year splutters into life with this reasonable feature-length / two-parter. And it stands as a very special story to me, as it is set in England, where I live, and a lot of it takes place in London â€" only a few miles from me (though I seldom venture into the City).
The story features a number of faces familiar to Brits â€" including fifth 'Doctor Who' Peter Davison as Ian Mackerras, the owner of Robinâ€™s new estate, and Arthur English, a stalwart of many British comedies, such as 'Are You Being Served'.
Although the story is special to me for obvious reasons, the plot itself is a mixed bag; it has its interesting elements, but at the same time it is a bit slow and indecisive in places. It continues the fifth season feel for going very much for more straight drama, with little of the action of earlier seasons.
And personally, I actually find the b-plot of Higgins and Mackerras trying to organise the new estate ("Robin's Keep") more interesting than the main plot involving Magnum's strange visions and his friend killed in suspicious circumstances.
I also wasn't sure of Francesca Annis playing Penelope â€" I found her acting a bit hammy in places, especially when Magnum tells her that husband Geoffrey has been killed.
Magnum's strange dreams are interesting, but I canâ€™t help but feel, set in England, that a plot involving MI5 or MI6 would have been just as good.
But there are a number of things that save this story. The location work around London, and some good scripting elsewhere in the story.
Review continued in Part II.