It’s Il Dottore’s birthday, but no day off for Montalbano. After a quick chat with his missus and the offer of a live octopus from a fisherman, he gets into a beef with an irate driver.
This turns into something rather bigger when said motorist – the son of the province’s president – has his girlfriend bumped off. Then a supermarket is robbed and an apparent suicide follows – could there be a link? With Catarella and Galluzzo in monumentally imbecilic form (how are they still in jobs?), Montalbano has to do the intellectual heavy-lifting himself, scrabbling around two cases with deep roots.
The plotting is so mechanical that you can hear the gears squeal and the treatment quaintly old-fashioned. But no one watches ‘Inspector Montalbano’ in the hope of a transcendental viewing experience. It’s another lavishly appointed time-passer which – with the final series of ‘Borgen’ now tantalisingly close – we’re prepared to indulge for a little longer.