Well, call me the Indiana Jones spelunker of cracking television procedurals.
I've developed a formula for these shows so you don't have to watch 'em. Trust me, this is good for you. I can save you valuable time. It's not highly scientific, but we'll take that approach to lend me some credence amongst the high-falutin' scientific community. We'll call it the "Da Stinky Code."
Murder + initial discovery + totally non-assuming character tossed in + at least 30 minutes of red herrings - 30 minutes of red herrings - three false arrests x "name" guest stars = THE CULPRIT.
Case example: We watched an episode of "Castle" last night. Man dies. The heroes discover the crime. A very "nice guy" shows up for two minutes, then vanishes. Attractive women show up under suspicion, only to be discarded after thirty minutes. False arrests made. Surprise! It's the "nice guy" who had two minutes face-time in the beginning.
Okay, no "name actor" this time. But the rest is true. Always.
Oh! And there's ALWAYS a secondary detective character who walks in while the main characters are positing a theory, waving necessary expository evidence in his hand. Set to "plinkity-plonkity" music. Man, I hate that. Once you guys hear it, you'll never let it go. Or forgive me.
I'm looking to extend y'all's lives. Just go do something else during the middle half of the show.
Professor of Television, Dr. Stuart R. West