A show set in Las Vegas was never going to project the most grounded of storylines, but some episodes of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation are more mind-boggling than others. We picked nine of our favourite (and possibly the most inconceivable) storylines from the CSI archive and threw in one we made up. Bet you can’t guess which one it is. (answer over the page).
Season 2, episode 5
A plotline based on an urban myth from 1998 was never going to be the makings of classic TV. This episode investigates the curious case of a scuba diver found dead. Up a tree. After a forest fire. Urban myths are fun in the playground, but when it comes to finding inspiration for TV dramas, scriptwriters would do best to leave them there.
Cats in the Cradle
Season 2, episode 20
The body of an old lady is found being used as a smorgasbord by her pet cats. However, a stab wound in her chest leaves the felines out of the dock. The real cat among the pigeons is the girl next door – a bad case of cat envy led her to murder the old dear with a pen.
Let The Seller Beware
Season 3, episode 3
High School Musical it most certainly isn’t. A twisted sub-plot leads the CSI team to investigate some drugged-up teenagers who satisfy their munchie cravings with their own classmate’s organs. Cut to thriller-style bloodied mouths and bite marks in rib cages.
Fur and Loathing
Season 4, episode 5
If you’re the kind of person that likes having their photo taken with Mickey Mouse, you’d think twice after watching this episode. The discovery of a dead man in a raccoon costume leads to an investigation within the fur fetish community, and after flashbacks to people in animal suits behaving in a rather unsavoury manner, Disney just got a whole lot creepier.
Season 5, episode 8
CSI hit its 100th episode, and as little effort as ever is put into conserving realism. Things get complicated when we discover that murdered Wendy used to be Walter, and her old doctor also lived as both Arthur and Martha… Far too much chopping and changing (literally) for anyone to follow.
Season 5, episode 15
Voted the worst TV episode of its airing week by the Parents’ Television Council of America, this features the mysterious death of casino boss Bruce Eiger and his penchant for wearing nappies. Throw in an LSD enema (two words you never want to hear in the same sentence) and you have the perfect recipe for an improbable plot.
Season 6, episode 11
Die-hard Twilight fans may cut this episode a bit of slack, but for most of us, real-life werewolf murders just don’t cut the mustard. A man with a rare genetic disorder that causes extreme hair growth is found shot dead and his twin sister, who is equally hirsute, has gone AWOL. A total howler.
Pirates of the Third Reich
Season 6, episode 15
Pirates of the Caribbean meets Schindler’s List. A women injected with flesh-eating bacteria and a homeless guy called Captain Jack are linked to a neo-Nazi killer hoping to follow in the footsteps of infamous concentration camp doctor Josef Mengele. The woman apparently chewed off her own arm. So did we. From sheer boredom.
Murder Most Fowl
Season 7, episode 3
Foie gras will never taste the same. A rural farmer is force-fed chicken feed until his insides explode, and it’s left to the intrepid CSI team to deduce whether the culprit is of human or avian extraction. Chickens or no chickens, we made like ostriches and buried our heads in the sand.
Deep Fried and Minty Fresh
Season 9, episode 13
This instalment is a veritable Pandora’s Box of far-fetched fatalities. The title doesn’t help. Chicken statues come crashing through windows, bodies are found in vats of grease (topically being processed into biofuel), a fast-food worker gets bludgeoned with a wet floor sign, and a young woman is horribly murdered by… a toothpaste overdose? Oh dear.
CSI season 10 airs on Saturdays at 7pm on Showseries