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Silent Witness

 (506)
7.91996X-Ray16+
Forensic pathologist Dr Sam Ryan believes every dead body deserves nothing but the truth.
Genres
Drama
Subtitles
None Available
Audio Languages
English
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  1. 1. Buried Lies 1
    21 February 1996
    49min
    15
    Audio Languages
    English
    Dr Sam Ryan investigates her first case as a police consultant.
  2. 2. Buried Lies 2
    21 February 1996
    44min
    15
    Audio Languages
    English
    The murder investigation continues and someone breaks into Sam's house.
  3. 3. Long Days Short Nights 1
    28 February 1996
    48min
    15
    Audio Languages
    English
    A badly decomposed body sends Sam into the world of the occult.
  4. 4. Long Days Short Nights 2
    28 February 1996
    49min
    15
    Audio Languages
    English
    The police grow frustrated with the lack of a forensic link in the case.
  5. 5. Darkness Visible 1
    13 March 1996
    48min
    15
    Audio Languages
    English
    A man's death while in police custody is not the open and shut case it first appears.
  6. 6. Darkness Visible 2
    14 March 1996
    50min
    15
    Audio Languages
    English
    Someone is harassing Sam as evidence of a cover-up mounts.
  7. 7. Sins Of The Fathers 1
    27 March 1996
    49min
    15
    Audio Languages
    English
    An arranged marriage leads to a murder and an arson attack.
  8. 8. Sins Of The Fathers 2
    3 April 1996
    52min
    15
    Audio Languages
    English
    Sam tries to persuade her student to reveal where her father is hiding.

More details

Directors
Ben Bolt
Producers
BBC
Season year
1996
Network
BBC1
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Format
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Devices
Available to watch on supported devices

Other formats

Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

506 global ratings

  1. 73% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 14% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 7% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 3% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 3% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United Kingdom

AshesReviewed in the United Kingdom on 24 April 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
Forensic Pathology with occasional violent scenes incorporating good script and intense acting
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The very first series of the popular BBC Crime Drama was made way back in 1996, although watching it, with the good script and acting you wouldn't really care. Amanda Burton plays the lead in this and this series having established her credentials as an actress in earlier dramas of the 1990's such as Brookside and Peak Practice. Unlike some of the more recent onesthis series is set in Cambridgeshire ( my neck of the woods ) so I enjoyed location spotting. Right from the get go my wife and I was hooked, the opening story was particularly gripping and if the rest are anything else to go by the first series will be very strong indeed. It always fascinates but also repulses me as to what drives a person to do the wicked things they do particularly when they use there behavior to control and manipulate people for there own means. When you watch the first story you will see what I mean.

This two disc edition features all four stories from series one. These in turn are divided into two parts so you get eight episodes in total. Later series apparently expand the format to five stories per series or ten episodes.
4 people found this helpful
a view from the trenchesReviewed in the United Kingdom on 05 January 2017
3.0 out of 5 stars
FIRST EPISODES TO A WINNING FORMULA , TEETHING TROUBLES ET AL
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I have avoided this series for all 20 years , so decided to give it a try , as something must be right after such longevity .
I actually enjoyed the first two part episode , it raced along , so why only 3 stars ?
SPOILERS
This pilot was clearly made on a very thin budget . ok. so the police cars have no regional crests , or the vans , just a 50p transfer strip . The script writers had to adjust the characters as the programme went along , clearly finding their feet . Miss Burtons mother and family clearly were of N.I.
extraction , but the mother had a very pronounced Scottish Dialect .
The biggest , costing two stars , gaff , was that it was clearly defined in part one , that the victim died in a stream , but not of drowning , as their was no water in her lungs . The story concluded with the murderer , watching her drown , under three times and out . A defence lawyer would have him off in seconds .
All considered , I look forward to further episodes .
2 people found this helpful
jasonhadReviewed in the United Kingdom on 27 August 2013
5.0 out of 5 stars
Well-written, acted and filmed Debut series
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While the pathology is a bit graphic and the writers' license all too obvious (what pathologist is allowed or even tolerated in a murder investigation?), Amanda Burton's performance is flawless, and the combination of good casting, directing, cinematography and editing overcomes any niggles or doubts. The nice part is the character development, methodical and precise.

Burton's character, Sam Ryan, is a woman haunted by the violent death of her father in Northern Ireland, the family home. She has clawed her way to the top of her profession, but in England, and is wed to her job. She of course solves the crimes in each episode, but along the way garners respect and affection of both her detractors and the audience.

A satisfying start to what appears to have become a long run, judging from the available sets, all reasonably priced.

The music is haunting . . .
2 people found this helpful
S. Graham DavidReviewed in the United Kingdom on 21 March 2014
5.0 out of 5 stars
A serious and very well crafted product
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I discovered the series by chance, and then came to wonder why it hadn't received all the acclaim it deserves. The protagonist hits a happy balance between scientific detachment and human compassion, and there's no attempt to step up the tension with extraneous effects (pulsing music, flashes, etc.); in fact, the tension is entirely intrinsic to the plot and action. Extremely delicate issues are addressed (sexual deviation, euthanasia, etc) without over-dramatization or moralistic attitudes. It seems to me far better than most other efforts in the genre (on a par with 'Waking the Dead').
One person found this helpful
JCCReviewed in the United Kingdom on 21 September 2014
4.0 out of 5 stars
Good but now looks dated
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I only recently got in to Silent Witness, so decided to go and start from the beginning by purchasing series one...
I think the show must've been just finding its feet here; there is some rather cringeworthy wooden acting and stilted scripts, and it hasnt aged well at all: it's a very mid-nineties production, which looks very outdated compared with how tv shows now look a lot more 'filmised'. That said, it's still quite entertaining, although a couple of episodes are not quite as engaging as later series would be...
One person found this helpful
BwlvychReviewed in the United Kingdom on 26 January 2014
5.0 out of 5 stars
Classic BBC crime drama.
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Silent Witness is a programme that I dipped in and out of over the years, never watching diligently but enjoying what I saw. I caught the start of the 2014 series and decided that, my wife never having watched it before, I'd get the first series so we could watch them all together and we were not disappointed. Yes there is the initial (but not unexpected) 'OMG look at the hair/clothes/technology!' but that is soon forgotten due to the gripping and well acted story lines.

I've just ordered series 2, what better review can you have?
3 people found this helpful
Michael DobeyReviewed in the United Kingdom on 12 March 2016
5.0 out of 5 stars
a great show starts here.
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this show is still on tv , and it's a good one. These early seasons take you back to the early nineties or so. The stories are good and it's a csi type of show before there was a csi. Perhaps it's more like quincy m.e. from ten years earlier. Anyways The show proved bigger than the star here who moved on after five seasons or so. The dvd looks good and thankfully the bbc was using film during this period/
One person found this helpful
John ConnellyReviewed in the United Kingdom on 31 May 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
Great purchase
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The product arrived on time and in great condition
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