A WELSH language version of US forensics drama CSI is to be axed – as its storylines were too humdrum.
Ymchwiliad Lleoliadau Trosedd: Aberystwyth – or Crime Scene Investigation: Aberystwyth, in English – was intended as a big budget Welsh TV crime drama based on the hit US series that follows the efforts of police forensic teams to track down murderers, sex offenders, terrorists and international drug lords through fanciful scientific methods.
The original Las Vegas based show has inspired spin offs set in Miami and New York.
But S4C has been forced to rethink its plans to develop a Welsh language version, YLT: Aber as the mundane nature of crime fighting in the seaside student town has proved a turn off for viewers.
Its pilot episode, which aired immediately after the Pobol y Cwm omnibus during the channel’s prime Sunday evening slot, featured the YLT – or Ymchwillydd Lleoliadau Trosedd to you or me – painstakingly combing a hotel room for the slightest trace of two suspects who’d fled the B&B without paying.
However internet critics have panned the show on Welsh TV discussion forum ‘I hate S4C.com’. Steve, from Wales, posted: “The police in Aberystwyth are bored as there is very little crime here. They usually investigate crimes such as ‘stolen scaffold planks’ when they are not trying to pick up young student girls.”
Another unimpressed viewer posted: “Sledgehammer and nut spring to mind.” while another questioned whether the storyline was believable: “How do you stay at a hotel these days without paying up front with a credit card or the like?”
However one forum member did praise the show. Ian Arundale, of Carmarthen, wrote: “I love Dyfed-Powys Police – they always go above and beyond. 10 years ago a lady’s purse was stolen in an Aberystwyth bar (stolen or dropped – who knows) and the police, God love ’em, went to the bar and fingerprinted the table. My local neighbourhood bobby also dug me out of a snow drift. Best police force in the world. Congratulations on a police show that captures the real excitement of bringing criminals to justice.”
Last night an S4C spokesman was attempting to put a positive spin on the show: “Police will use all available scientific means, including DNA testing, to support investigations and to identify offenders, so it is believable.
“And unfortunately people occasionally do runners, it’s a major problem in the Aberystwyth hotel trade, these offences take place, and they are not victim-less. Are you interested yet?
“When first introduced in the 1980s, DNA profiling was considered expensive, and was initially reserved for what you might call the most serious crimes but solving relatively minor offences is sexy nowadays.”