Acorn TV’s great last-minute gifts for TV crime drama fans

Midsomer Murders XVllThe Dagger Club
Midsomer Murders XVllThe Dagger Club /

Need a last-minute Christmas gift for the TV crime drama fan in your life? Check out Acorn TV’s newest Midsomer Murders and Line of Duty releases.

Christmas is less than a week away, so if you’re still trying to solve the mystery of a last-minute gift, Acorn TV is here with brand-new releases of two excellent TV crime dramas.

Midsomer Murders has always done excellent Christmas episodes, and none better than season 16’s “The Christmas Haunting,” which is getting a stand-alone release in the Midsomer Murders: Holiday Pop-Up Collectible set.

“The Christmas Haunting” is the first appearance of Detective Sergeant Charlie Nelson, portrayed wonderfully by Gwilym Lee (now famous for playing Brian May in Bohemian Rhapsody). Nelson is newly assigned to assist Detective Chief Inspector John Barnaby (Neil Dudgeon), and the two have their hands full when someone is stabbed by an antique sword.

So how exactly do you solve a murder when everyone thinks that the prime suspect is a ghost?

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This is a great episode, both festive and mysterious at the same time, and the DVD release has a behind-the-scenes interview with Gwilym Lee, where he discusses joining the cast of Midsomer Murders and filming this episode. At nine minutes, it’s a good, solid bonus feature.

The company has also given the episode some festive Christmas packaging! The case folds out into a holiday pop-up card featuring Barnaby and his adorable dog Sykes, for fans to display on their mantel above the fireplace or beside their Christmas tree.

You can combine that with the cards included in holiday releases of Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries and The Brokenwood Mysteries to form a crossover Christmas scene, but that’s not necessary—Barnaby and Sykes look great all on their own!

Midsomer Murders: Holiday Pop-Up Edition retails for $24.99 and can be ordered here.

Line of Duty
From left: Martin Compston, Adrian Dunbar, Vicky McClure from Line of Duty. Photo Credit: Des Willie/Courtesy of Acorn TV. /

If you’re looking for something a bit bigger, Acorn TV has just released Line of Duty: Series 1-5 Collection, which brings together every episode of the hit crime drama to date including the fifth season that exclusively streamed in the U.S. on Acorn TV.

Recently named one of our 25 Days of Crime-mas picks, the series hails from Jed Mercurio, who also wrote Netflix‘s smash hit Bodyguard. Each season details a different investigation into police corruption, with a different A-list guest star in the frame.

Martin Compston, Vicky McClure and Adrian Dunbar make up the regular cast, with guest leads including Lennie James (The Walking Dead, Low WInter Sun), Keeley Hawes (Bodyguard, Ashes to Ashes) and Thandie Newton (Rogue).

Fans who don’t own any of the show yet now have it collected in one convenient box set. But it’s not just the episodes; Acorn have packed it with a lengthy 20-minute behind the scenes “making of” documentary, another 20 minutes of cast interviews, and a full half-hour of deleted footage that didn’t make it into the show. It’s as thorough a release as we’re going to get, and the perfect catch-up before series 6 arrives, hopefully sometime in 2020.

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Line of Duty: Series 1-5 Collection retails for $124.99 and can be ordered here. Either one would be a great gift for any TV crime drama viewer this Christmas. Of course, you can also get them an Acorn TV streaming subscription here to see more British TV crime dramas!