Intriguing French Crime Drama Hit on Brilliant Yet Unconventional Forensic Doctor Lands in NZ

Wednesday 27 January 2021, 3:39PM
By Undertow Media NZ

One of the 10 highest-rated dramas in France in 2018 – four of its episodes were seen by at least six million viewers each on TF1 – BALTHAZAR series 1 will stream in New Zealand, on Acorn TV on Monday, February 1, in a binge premiere of all six episodes.


Compared favourably to such shows as Castle, The Mentalist and Bones —this acclaimed series stars popular actor, director and comic Tomer Sisley (Messiah, The Heir Apparent: Largo Winch) as Raphaël Balthazar. A handsome, intelligent and quick-witted forensic pathologist in Paris, Balthazar can make the dead speak like no one else, a skill that means his victims help him to solve their own violent murders. Balthazar is suave and savvy but also irreverent, mischievous and lives his life in firm defiance of norms and conventions. A way of life that presents a major challenge for new, no-nonsense police commander Hélène Bach (Hélène de Fougerolles, Le Secret d’Elise, VA Savoir), who must collaborate with him on these complicated cases.


On the job, Balthazar is very confident; his conclusions are often pinpoint accurate, filling gaps surrounding the victims, their lifestyles and their deaths, drawing from his top-notch skills and latest technology to help uncover evidence that police have missed on the crime scene. He becomes so personally invested in the victims’ back stories that he speaks with them while conducting their autopsies at the morgue and they interact in return. He’s openly flirtatious with Bach. Yet he is vulnerable at home where he still mourns his late wife Lise (Pauline Cheviller, Le Secret d’Elise) in the place she was murdered 13 years ago. He draws comfort from intimate imagined conversations with her --whether he’s admiring her aunt’s courgette jam, she is poking fun at him for scaring away a one-night stand by leaving graphic crime scene photos on the coffee table or they are watching the Miss France competition show, which was a favourite pastime of theirs. Balthazar is now greatly conflicted over whether the man locked up for Lise’s murder was actually the perpetrator. Thanks to new clues, Balthazar is in hot pursuit to learn the true identity of her killer.


In the series premiere, Balthazar and Bach work together to solve the double homicide of a public prosecutor and his wife gunned down in their home, leaving behind their traumatized six-year-old daughter. In episode two, Balthazar arrives to a gruesome scene of a beaten man with his face partially missing: everyone claims the victim was well-liked, so why was he dumped miles from his home, and why didn’t he ever mention his


years-old injuries to his wife? Also, Balthazar helps a woman in a movie theatre who appears to have been stabbed, but after realizing the blood she’s covered in belongs to someone else, he races to find the other injured person. Learning that the two victims were engaged, Bach interviews their families, who claim the pair were very much in love, but evidence shows the woman was deeply depressed. Co-starring in the series is Yanig Samot (The French Kissers) as policeman Jerome Delgado.


BALTHAZAR premiered on December 6, 2018 in France and is a production of BEAUBOURG STORIES in co-production with France’s TF1 and international distributor ITV Studios Global Entertainment. BALTHAZAR Series 2 is scheduled to stream on Acorn TV in March 2021.


New Zealand Premiere: Monday, February 1, 2021 Episodes: 6 (one-hour each, English subtitles)





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About Acorn TV

For those after a Brit-fix, AMC Networks’ Acorn TV carefully curates a world-class library of captivating crime thrillers, addictive dramas and intriguing mysteries to offer Kiwi audiences instant access to their favourite British and international shows all in the one place.


As North America’s most popular streaming service for a largely British slate of television, the service includes longstanding favourites including Midsomer Murders, Cold Feet, Doc Martin and Father Ted with new shows, such as the recent BBC1 hit Anthony, released every week.


Acorn TV offers a free trial and thereafter monthly and annual subscriptions cost just $7.99 and $79.99 respectively. Website: Acorn.TV