In "Written in the Stars," a dead body is found just after a solar eclipse. Between an apparent fight involving local astronomers and a horoscopist claiming to have predicted the first death, Barnaby and Jones have a few suspects to consider. As is usual with this series, this episode has three deaths, and each one has an oddly different murder weapon, but there appears to be a common thread relating to the constellations.
"The Sicilian Defence" takes place in a village whose claim to fame was a chess champion many years ago. When a coma patient wakes up a year after her attack coincides with a death in the village, what starts off as trying to figure out what happened to the girl ends up becoming an attempt to connect that year-old attack with the current murders. To add to the confusion, the deaths are accompanied by a series of chess moves, but when the suspects are chess masters, who can the police trust to decipher the message the killer is leaving?
John's wife, Sarah (Fiona Dolman), becomes a source of school-district knowledge in "Schooled in Murder" when Jones and Barnaby investigate a death tied to a local all-girls prep school. While the prep school is a major point of the investigation, there is also the victim's place of work, a local farm known for making a world-famous cheese. This farm is still doing much of its labor by hand, and that's the primary reason for its financial difficulties. The new owners, who inherited the farm, are trying to turn the business around, but to do so, they will have to modernize. So, are the murders in this mystery tied to the farm or the school?
Midsomer Murders releases don't often have special features, but Set 24 does. Included in this collection is a written biography and short filmography of the dog-actor playing Sykes, John and Sarah's pet. While this adds an interesting bit of background information, it seems like a poor substitute for an episode. Then again, while Set 24 doesn’t contain the usual four mysteries, what it has is pretty good and interesting.