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Commissario Brunetti. This terrific German series with the titular Italian lead character is being re-aired on American telly starting this weekend. Fantastisch!

Commissario Brunetti
Commissario Brunetti Mysteries

Adapted from the novels by American author Donna Leon, the Commissario Brunetti Mysteries follow the police commissioner — an intelligent and savvy detective with a wife, two children, and happy family life — as he investigates crimes in and around his hometown of the historic city of Venice. Not a bad gig, you might say, since Venice is so beautiful. But the stunning setting belies the morally bankrupt and murderous amongst its denizens.

MHz Networks begins re-airing Donna Leon’s Commissario Brunetti Mysteries starting tomorrow, Saturday, 19 April 2015, at 3 PM ET, terrestrially on MHz Worldview and online at MHz Live. (The first seven episodes are scheduled through the end of May.)

The first four feature-length episodes star Joachim Król (Tatort) as Commissario Guido Brunetti and Barbara Auer (The Book Thief) as his wife Paola.

Commissario Brunetti Fatal Remedies
Commissario Brunetti: Joachim Król as Commissario Guido Brunetti, Karl Fischer as Sergente Lorenzo Vianello, courtesy of MHz Networks

In “Vendetta” (adapted from the novel Death and Judgment), payback is a… well, you know, and Brunetti has his hands full. A high-powered attorney and respected accountant are murdered in the span of a few days, and a drug and human trafficking ring is causing the deaths of others. Certain intimates of the victims aren’t forthcoming with information, so Brunetti gets help from other sources, some close to home.

Who is “The Anonymous Venetian” (adapted from Dressed for Death)? That’s what Brunetti wants to know after a transvestite found dead turns out to be an influential businessman. Suspecting blackmail, Brunetti goes in search of answers and discovers that more Venetian men lead double lives than he imagined.

“Fatal Remedies” finds a member of Brunetti’s family vandalizing the office of a local business, casting a shadow inside their happy home overlooking the Grand Canal. Worse yet, the business owner is later found dead with an anonymous letter denouncing a heinous crime, and Brunetti’s investigation pits him against a powerful Venetian family.

And in “A Noble Radiance” a grave is discovered in a field outside Venice, and the ring on the skeleton’s finger is a clue to a cold case involving a wealthy Venetian family.

Starting with the fifth episode, Uwe Kockisch (The Eagle) has the lead role, with Julia Jäger (Bukow and König) costarring as Paola Brunetti.

Commissario Brunetti
Commissario Brunetti: Karl Fischer as Sergente Lorenzo Vianello, Uwe Kockisch as Commissario Guido Brunetti, courtesy of MHz Networks

Adapted from Leon’s first “Brunetti” novel, “Death at La Fenice” revolves around the cyanide poisoning of a famed conductor. As Brunetti delves into the maestro’s past, he uncovers a shocking picture of immorality and ruthlessness… and a legion of bitter enemies.

With “Friends In High Places,” who needs enemies? Following the supposed accidental death of a municipal clerk, Brunetti suspects foul play and discovers that the victim’s boss has friends in high places… and illegal dealings with them, too.

And “Quietly In Their Sleep” centers on the mysterious deaths in a Venice retirement home, brought to Brunetti’s attention by a young nun who is nearly killed herself. His investigation reveals connections to a secret church organization and one of its charismatic members: the home’s resident confessor.

Commissario Brunetti cast members that appear in all 20 episodes produced to date include Karl Fischer (Janus) as Sergente Lorenzo Vianello, Michael Degen (Tatort) as Vice-Questore Giuseppe Patta, Laura Syniawa (Bukow and König) as Guido and Paola’s daughter Chiara, Patrick Diemling (Tatort) as their son Raffi, and Annett Renneberg (Stolberg) as Signorina Elettra Zorzi, Patta’s secretary.

Ueli Jäggi (Tatort) plays Dr. Stefano Aurino and Dietmar Mössmer (Bukow and König) plays Sergente Alvise in 19 episodes, while Christel Peters (Bukow and König) has a recurring role as Signora Amelia Brunetti, Guido’s mother, as does Peter Fitz (Au Revoir Les Enfants) as Conte Orazio Falier, Paola’s father.

For Euro TV viewers who would rather watch Commissario Brunetti in the evenings, episodes will screen on MHz Worldview and MHz Live starting Friday, 15 May, at 9 PM ET. All episodes are shown in German with English subtitles.


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Commissario Brunetti: German Mystery Drama Back on Telly