Post image for DVD Review: THE UNDERTAKER / DER BESTATTER (MHz Releasing)

by Dale Reynolds on November 18, 2017

in CD-DVD,Film


This ongoing Swiss-German series, The Undertaker (Der Bestatter), is something of a rarity for the adventurous distributor, MHz Releasing: a serio-comic series about a former cop, Luc Conrad (Mike Müeller), who has quit the force to take over his family’s funeral business, after his father has died, alongside his step-mother and other workers.

Of course, being in the business of The Dead, his police training and background leads him into co-solving these murders as much as readying the deceased for funeral-viewing. It’s a smart show, educating viewers as to how to recognize murder as well as natural passings (“Bestatter” translates loosely as “one who cares for the dead”).

In the four released seasons (three on DVD, all four streaming) attended to by MHz (well-known for the quality police-procedure and drama series they import from Europe and elsewhere), Luc has romance in mind with his ex-wife, detective Anna-Maria Giovanoli (Barbara Terpoorten), and the training of a very strange young man new to the field, Fabio Testi (Reto Stalder, whose good looks are made to look “punk/gothic”—bizarre at best, but character-reflecting).

Screenwriters Dave Tucker, Dominik Bernet and Claudia Pütz have written solid stories about all the adventures Conrad, Anna-Maria, and Fabio get to endure for this series. The writing is as charming as it is seemingly accurate in the way Swiss police work is conducted,  and the directors (four of them in these three seasons) know their business as well.

It is great fun and all done in serious mode, with comic overtones, and nicely photographed.  Very entertaining, indeed.

photos courtesy of MHz Releasing

The Undertaker (Der Bestatter)
MHz Releasing
Seasons 1 & 2
2013/2014 | 4 DVD set | 571 minutes
Season 3
2015 | 3 DVD set | 349 minutes
in German with English subtitles
available at Amazon
Seasons 1-4 now streaming at MHz Choice

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