This show has seen quite a few changes over the past couple of volumes, the biggest being John Nettles leaving the show and a younger Barnaby taking Tomís place. Another change happens in this volume as well: Dr. Bullard (Barry Jackson) leaves the show and is replaced by the much younger (and prettier) Kate Wilding (Tamzin Malleson).
In the setís first episode, "The Sleeper Under the HIll," a farmer is found disemboweled on the bloodstone of a ritual druidic ring (picture a smaller version of Stonehenge). Of course, the local druids are the first people suspected given the nature of the murder, but not everything is as it seems and the the truth is much more sinister than nature-based religious ceremonies.
In "The Night of the Stag," a tax collector goes missing, but shows up in a giant vat of apple cider during an annual festival shared by a pair of close villages. It seems that the revenue man was investigating a local moonshine operation. Both villages take their drinks seriously, especially when it comes to the drinks made from their apple orchards. So much so in fact, that the aldermen of the villages are also the owners of their respective villagesí pub. Long-time followers of Midsomer Murders will know that the show loves the crooked politician angle, but could these two pub owners be involved in the murder?
The setís third episode, "A Sacred Trust," centers around Midsomer Priory when a report of vandalism turns into a murder investigation because one of the conventís four nuns turns up dead. As the investigation deepens, the remaining nuns realize that they are missing some ancient treasures, but no one is sure if the robbery is tied to the murder, or if there are two separate crimes to investigate.
In the last episode in the collection, "A Rare Bird," a death among a local group of bird-watchers has Barnaby and Jones digging into yet another odd subculture. As they interview the various members of the local twitchers group, they learn that a row broke out between the recently deceased and a member who claims to have spotted a very rare bird for the area. Meanwhile, the murderered man's wife, a Russian ballerina, has just found out she is pregnant and while she claims it is her husbandís, the evidence says otherwise. Could the killer be a jealous cuckolder or someone related to the birding group? As is common with this show, the guilty party isnít the obvious person and the reasons behind the killing even less expected.
Unlike most Midsomer volumes in the past, Midsomer Murders: Set 22 comes with an actual special feature. This short featurette is a collection of interviews with the showís cast about everything from the opening theme music to how the actors got their start in show business. This combined with the higher quality of Blu-ray means that Midsomer Murders: Set 22 is a good buy for any fan of the show.