As summer slowed to the torpid stillness of heat and humidity, I felt less and less inclined to move. I gave in to lying on the couch in the hottest part of the day, watching movies and series on Netflix. The best was watching the entire “Touch of Frost” series as blowtorch summer brought the real world outside almost to a complete standstill.
D.I. Frost is an English detective whose droll sense of humour and cleverness at solving murder mysteries is most engaging. Set in England in the fictitious town of Denton, the shows ran the gamut of weather seasons, and most were set in the cold and rain. Perfect for offsetting the hideous heat outside.
Frost is played by English actor David Jason, and the series is based on books by R.D. Wingfield who penned the Frost series. Jason’s interpretation of the detective is cleaner, cleverer, and more empathetic than the book character, and it enhances the stories. Every story was interesting and most of the time the viewer couldn’t guess the outcome until almost the very end.
I found myself missing the characters in the drama when I was gone on vacation, and thinking of them as if they were real people. There were George Toolan, faithful and long-suffering co-worker and friend; Ernie Trigg, blustering but highly-competent police archivist; pompous, but conscientious, boss Norman Mullett; and of course, William “Jack” Frost himself. There were several partners that drifted in and out of the series, and many other characters that I started to feel as if I knew each of them well.
I found myself absorbing some of the English slang used, such as “suss,” which means to figure something out, “skiving,” which means slacking at work, and once even told someone I “was skint,” meaning I didn’t have any cash on me. And then there were all the meanings of “nicked,” most commonly, busted for breaking the law.
There were 42 episodes, and sometimes we lounged around so long in the afternoon that we watched two of the two-hour shows. I thought we’d take all summer to watch them, but they were over by mid-July, much to my disappointment. I wanted more. What I was really disappointed with was how the whole series ended. I was very shocked and saddened by the last show, but I saw how it was a conclusion that would explain Frost’s feelings at the end. Life seemed a bit empty after that, but after a couple of weeks, I didn’t feel quite as bereft.
So, as usual, all good things had to come to an end, and my summer vacation time came to an end as well. But, I will always remember my “summer of Frost.”