|Genre||crime, black comedy|
|Created by||Carlo Lucarelli|
|Country of origin||Italy|
|No. of seasons||4|
|No. of episodes||14|
|Running time||100 minutes (per episode)|
|Production company(s)||Rai Fiction|
|Original channel||RAI 2|
|Original airing||August 24, 2006|
L'ispettore Coliandro is a series of Italian tongue-in-cheek television movies directed by Marco Manetti and Antonio Manetti (collectively Manetti Bros.), and written by the crime writer Carlo Lucarelli and starring Giampaolo Morelli in the title role of the Inspector Coliandro. According to the actors and the directors, Coliandro is an Italian crime television series aimed "at young audiences." In fact this is probably so.
The policemen in Italian fiction and shows like Il commissario Montalbano are stalwart servants of the law, and usually save the day.
Inspector Coliandro saves the day also, but mostly by a combination (according to one of the actors) "of luck and [his younger partner's] intuition." He is ignorant, crude, and despised by all his colleagues except this partner, who is the only one who view him the way he views himself: as a hero worthy of the good guys in American cop movies.
The humor of the series is manifest in the difference between the way Coliandro sees himself and the way the rest of the world sees him. Coliandro's very name is a play on the Italian word coglione - a word literally meaning "ball", but most usually used with the meaning of "asshole" - and he must continually correct its pronunciation.
One notably characteristic of the "Coliandro" series is that all its episodes are shot in the city of Bologna, or its immediate surroundings. This has led to some criticisms in Italy as, although it's a quite important city in the country - mostly due to its university and its role as a cultural center, it is too much a reduced stage to be credibly involved in some of the events depicted in the show.
The series has hitherto consisted of three seasons of four episodes each, plus a fourth series whose production was stopped in its run after the second episode. The first season was aired in 2006, the second in 2009, the third in 2010. Giampaolo Morelli (Coliandro), Alessandro Rossi (commissioner De Zan), Veronica Logan (prosecutor Longhi), and Giuseppe Soleri (agent Gargiulo, Coliandro's partner) reprised their roles in the second season; the rest of the cast was rotated.
Second season (2009)
- La pistola (The Gun): Jelena from Montenegro (Xhilda Lapardhaja) escapes with her brother from the clutches of Darko Tomić, a "Balkan mafioso" established in Bologna, after her brother, Tomić's truck driver, falls ill. In the course of her escape she runs into Coliandro, who tries to arrest her, but by dint of his ineptness loses her—together with the gun she snatches off his belt. He spends two days looking for her, fruitlessly; he is about to despair when she suddenly appears in front of his apartment, points his gun in his face, and tells him that Tomić is in league with the Neapolitan Camorra and about to conclude an immense deal with the same. She promises to lead him to Tomić—if he agrees to kill him. Coliandro proudly tells her she's lost her mind and is locked in the bathroom for it—that is to say, put at square one. Angry and even spiteful at having lost not only his target but also the other pistol she stole from him, Coliandro enlists the help of trusty Gargiulo, and together they dig through the records and discover that Jelena's cousin is living on the outskirts of the city. They find her there, thanks to Gargiulo's sharp eye, hiding in a niche in the floor made by her cousin's husband, who was a Partisan during World War II. Coliandro agrees to kill Tomić, though with his fingers crossed, and Jelena leads him and Gargiulo to the meeting-place. There everything that can go wrong does, and a car chase ensues, at the end of which Jelena kills Tomić herself. The story ends, as always, with Coliandro lamenting to the stars that he cracked the case and no one will remember him for it.
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