Reading Csi (Paperback)

Crime TV Under the Microscope (Reading Contemporary Television)

By Allen Michael

I. B. Tauris & Company, 9781845114282, 304pp.

Publication Date: August 1, 2007

List Price: 18.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


This is what we know, this is the truth: CSI is a global television phenomenon. It began in 2000 with "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation", a dark procedural drama about forensic science set within the neon escapism of Las Vegas, in which Grissom and his team search within the very vitals of the murder victims they investigate. Nearly 17 million viewers tuned in each week and "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" fast became America's number one show. The success of the series moved it into franchise territory, continuing in 2002 with the body beautifuls and dismembereds of "CSI: Miami" (now the world's biggest television show) and again in 2004 extending the francise to the melancholic noir of post-9/11 New York with "CSI: NY". "Reading 'CSI'" pieces together the evidence in order to understand what the CSI shows mean to contemporary television culture, both in America and beyond.
The varied, intellectually curious and often polemic responses to CSI from critics, journalists and industry professionals focus on a range of issues from the pornographic quality of the CGI effects, the relationship of characters to their narratives, and the reaction of the fans, to the semiotics of Horatio Caine's sunglasses. This in depth, compulsive read also includes a full episode guide.

About the Author

Mike Allen is Lecturer in Film and Electronic Media, Birkbeck College, University of London. His books include 'Family Secrets', a study of D.W. Griffith's feature films, and 'Contemporary U.S. Cinema'. His new book, 'Live from the Moon: Film, Television and the Space Race will be published by I.B. Tauris in 2007.