Caïn, the popular French mystery-crime drama series starring Bruno Debrandt as the eponymous flic, returns to the US with its third season and a new streaming home.
Truth be told, after watching the very first episode of Caïn when it premiered in the US a few years ago, I thought the lead character was a complete jerk and wasn’t sure if I wanted to see any more of this guy.
But I gave it another shot, then another, etc, etc… and said jerk — Captain Frédéric ‘Fred’ Caïn of the Marseille Police (Bruno Debrandt, Spiral, Mystère à la Tour Eiffel) — grew on me, as did the series itself. This is not to say that Caïn was any less boorish from episode to episode, but I came to like the flawed and wheelchair-bound cop whose dark sense of humor, habit of throwing caution (and police protocols) to the wind, and deep and abiding sense of justice serve him well in catching killers.
Season 3 opens with the episode “Coupables” (“Guilty”), in which Caïn and his partner, Lieutenant Lucie Delambre (Julie Delarme, 1788… et demi), are causing a stir amongst their colleagues because the two are flirting. (Ben, dis donc!)
Crime-wise, a corpse has been deliberately placed in the morgue for medical examiner Dr. Stunia (Smadi Wolfman, Spin) to find. The manner of the murder is exactly the same as another case — one that the legendary Captain Allard (Pascal Légitimus, Scènes de ménages), now dying of cancer, failed to solve 15 years ago. Given Allard’s knowledge of the cold case, Commander Jacques Moretti (Frédéric Pellegeay, Meurtres à la Rochelle) accepts his offer of assistance, and Allard joins Caïn, Delambre, and criminal researcher-analyst Lieutenant Borel (Mourad Boudaoud, Bonne pomme) on the investigation.
Soon thereafter, Stunia finds another dead body on the examination table in the morgue, and Borel discovers the link between the two murders. Now Caïn and his team must determine who the next target is and get to her or him before s/he becomes the killer’s third victim.
In “Réalités” (“Facts”), the executive assistant of Daniel Leroy (Didier Cauchy, Plus belle la vie) is murdered while she and Leroy, the factory accountant-turned-manager, are on video with each other. Caïn and Delambre learn that the victim was engaged to another factory employee who, like his coworkers, see Leroy as the factory’s savior — succeeding where the former manager, who has since scarpered, had failed. Only things aren’t as they appear and Caïn realizes certain people are lying through their teeth, so he and Delarme set a trap.
Meanwhile, Ben Caïn (Davy Sanna, Duo), the detective’s son, is still dating Amandine (Juliet Lemonnier, Hôtel de la plage), the daughter of wealthy businessman Valentin Zuycker (Jean-Yves Berteloot, La vie devant elles), and Fred does not approve in the least. With Ben being like a son to Moretti, the police chief does some unofficial investigating and what he learns isn’t good. To prevent matters from getting worse for Ben and Fred, Moretti asks Delarme for help with someone he isn’t supposed to know about.
In the remaining six episodes of this season, Caïn and co. investigate the murders of a suspected pedophile, a user of a dating website, a computer executive, a jewelry store robber, and the mother of someone close to Caïn’s son.
Guest stars include Anne Suarez (Black Spot) as Fred’s ex-wife and Ben’s mum, François-Dominique Blin (In Tandem), Guillaume Marquet (Three Times Manon), Agathe de La Boulaye (Riviera), Emmanuel Patron (Duval and Moretti), Lionnel Astier (No Second Chance), and Cécile Pallas (Lost Signs).
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