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The hit French series Balthazar returns to the upper two-thirds of North America with its third season, which features an ongoing mystery and new, darker crimes.

Balthazar S3
Balthazar: Tomer Sisley as Raphaël Balthazar — Photo by Nicolas Roucou, courtesy of Acorn TV

Fans of Balthazar, it’s happy dance time, because the third season arrives in the US and Canada in a matter of hours.

Note: If you have not yet seen Series 1 and Series 2, go watch them first, then come back here for details about Series 3, to avoid spoilers.

The new season opener finds former forensic pathologist Raphaël Balthazar (Tomer Sisley, Messiah, The Heir Apparent: Largo Winch) far from Paris. Sailing on the Atlantic Ocean, actually. After going ashore on l’Île d’Edan for a few supplies, he returns to his boat and later is awoken by thumping — and discovers a dead body in the water. But it’s something else that brings him back to the island and back to the work he knows best.

It’s been six months since Balthazar left Paris, so when Chief Inspector Hélène Bach (Hélène de Fougerolles, Le Secret d’Elise, Va Savoir) arrives on the island, she is both thrilled to know that he is alive and well, and upset as all get-out that he had been incommunicado, leaving her deeply worried about him, that entire time. Be that as it may, the two have work to do. What they don’t realize is the danger that awaits…

Back in Paris at his old job and with a sporty new banana-yellow car, Balthazar is called to the scene of a death: a young man died from being impaled after falling several stories from his apartment. Leave it to Raphaël to determine on the spot that the death was no accident. What he doesn’t get is why Hélène is being a bit frosty toward him. Then something he didn’t think would happen happens…

Their next case together finds the crime-solving duo in serious hot water — after they are captured by the military and found with a bloody body. They can justify what they did to the interrogators, but Balthazar’s recollection doesn’t necessarily jibe with Hélène’s version of who said what. Soon after they solve the mystery of the multiple deaths that brought them to the military base to begin with, they are called to the scene of a murder with striking similarities to several others. This time, though, Hélène believes she has a major break in the ongoing investigation…

But then she and Raphaël work on a case that indicates a(nother) (possible) serial murderer…

And in the second half of Series 3, Balthazar, Bach, and their respective teams investigate cases involving a medium, a young boy, a clown, and a actual serial killer…

Like the first two seasons, the third season of Balthazar was a ratings success in France, so it’s no surprise that the show has been renewed for a fourth season. I binge-watched the screeners for the first five episodes of Series 3 and found its murder mystery stories as cleverly crafted, intricate, and intriguing as the ones in the previous two seasons, and the continuing mystery of who killed Lise to be compelling as well. And I appreciate the writers’ use of a new storytelling “setting” and locations beyond Paris in the new season, as they add freshness and serve illustrative purposes. Once I’m finished here, I’m going right back to the show to finish the third season, then wait for the fourth one to arrive.

Reprising their roles for Series 3 are Yannig Samot (La Mante) as Jérôme Delgado, Philypa Phoenix (Osmosis) as Fatim, and Côme Levin (Missions) as Eddy, Pauline Cheviller (Captain Marleau) as Lise, and Leslie Medina (No Second Chance) as Maya.

Balthazar: Series 3 premieres in the US and Canada with all eight episodes tomorrow, Monday, February 8, exclusively on Acorn TV and its digital channels, including Acorn TV on Amazon.

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Euro TV to Watch: Series 3 Premiere of Fabulous French Forensic Crime Drama ‘Balthazar’
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