The 200th Birthday Spectacular Review

Happy 200th Birthday CSI, and what better way to celebrate than a spot of Mexican Wrestling Lucha Libre, well why not? Honestly when I first heard the title and basic plot of the 200th episode special Mascara, I had strong images of Jack Black in tights and a mask, trying to explain to Brass how his DNA arrived at the crime scene, this was then followed swiftly by him jumping a shark. But, as we all know well enough by now, we can't count on our first blush; if the evidence changes, so must the theory.

It wasn't a raging gun battle down the Las Vegas strip, with the team chasing a whole gang of serial killers, who can only be stopped when they discover a new way to manipulate DNA or retrieve fingerprints from a dog's mouth. No, it was back to basics, with believable science and a good solid plot, with some memorable performances from our happy regulars and guest stars, especially when Lawrence Fishbourne lets Ray loose and pins a suspect to the table, followed by some LVPD window smashing.

The story was expertly handcrafted by two of the head poncho's down at CSI headquarters, screenwriters Naren Shanker (A Bullet Runs Through it Part 2, Lab Rats) and Dustin Lee Abraham (For Gedda, Fannysmackin). The script was brought to the screen in a gritty but fresh and stinging style, with a strong focus on the characters insights. A gift we graciously receive from the award-winning director, William Freidkin.

Who? William Freidkin. Come on! Billy Peterson's best bud who brought us The Exorcist, the film where the girls head goes all the way around - you with me? Good! Friedkin was also a guest director for the Season 8 episode Cockroaches, where for Brown it was the beginning of the end.

It was nice to see Brass leading the charge, Paul Guilfoyle is a stand up actor and lately I thought they had him on to much of a shorter leash. Alongside was Langston, who I've quite happily accepted into the Crime Lab Gang. Trainee Langston has been forced in our faces by taking majority of the screen time in the last few episodes. I believe their attitude towards us is, like it, or lump because Dr Ray is here to stay, and for $14 million would you be going anywhere?

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