There are not many black or brown faces in English villages. But even in the Chilterns, Chinese restaurants and Asian newsagents tend to be staffed by Chinese waiters and Asian shopkeepers. You do not need to move on through Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire, where Midsomer Murders is filmed, to visibly more multi-ethnic towns, to feel the creepiness and the falsity behind its creator’s boast that his production company could impose a colour bar on black and Asian actors because “it wouldn’t be an English village with them” on screen.
I probably don’t need to add that the killing sprees that afflict Midsomer so are no more realistic than the all-white cast list. Until Aylesbury police helped them out by announcing a suspicious death on Friday, the big story for my local newspaper colleagues who cover DCI Barnaby’s beat was the trial of a couple from Warborough. The court convicted them of mistreating a rabbit.
Carry on reading