Try CC'ing 'CSI'

Cary Ashby
Mar 29, 2010


Have you ever watched a TV show or movie using closed captions?

I find it very helpful – I understand what the characters are saying (especially when they’re speaking in low tones or hurriedly, to make it more realistic) and it helps make sure I don’t miss any lines. I started using it 11 years ago when a good buddy introduced it to me at graduate school when we got together each week to watch “NYPD Blue.”

What’s also great bout CC is you don’t miss any of the show when there’s a lot of background noise (theoretically).

For parents, it’s wonderful to (literally) watch a show you don’t want your kid seeing with the “mute” button activated if you have the kid in the bed next to you in a hotel room.

That’s what my wife and I did Thursday night. We watched a little more than half of “CSI” on a CBS channel where the captions were at least four lines of dialogue behind. It took a little bit of adjustment knowing you were watching the next scene, but reading the last few lines from the previous scene.

My only complaint is the captions didn’t say who was talking much; mostly it was the standard placement of the attributing captions on the screen where the character is/was onscreen. (Almost identical to comic strips and comics and their wood and thought balloons.)

When my wife told me there was another CBS affiliate, we traded channels. This time the closed captioning was at real time. Once, the CC was two seconds ahead of the actor delivering the line because we could read Lt. Brass’ lips.

Try it sometime - you might like it.

* * *

Not much to say about the episode, except three things: 1) Adams must have been developing a good relationship with the coroner because obviously they had been doing the ongoing verbal Scrabble game for quite some time. (That takes a lot of brains to keep track of the next and last moves in your head for long enough to see the other player.) I’m glad to see Adams is not as much of a snot was she was in her first episode.

2) I LOVED seeing Nick and Hodges having fun “investigating” the hands-on ramifications of hitting the mailboxes in the CSI building garage. Especially great was Nick saying he was going to drive faster during the next run-through than Hodges did the first time.

3) Finally, it looks like the writers are trying to give a lot of closure to Grissom’s previous storylines. (Did you notice one of the commercials late in the show announced Laurence Fishbourne is coming Dec. 11?) It was an interesting psychological approach to have Natalie Davis’ job in the psychiatric ward require the use of bleach, which was instrumental in her Miniature Killings.

Grissom’s testimony where he questioned – or what I saw as him to be hoping – that criminals, “even damaged ones” can change was fitting for him. That optimism has been the humanity Grissom has brought to the series.

It was creepy to see Natalie have created and left one last miniature scene – sadly, it was a prediction of her suicide in prison. Maybe we optimists should see it as a cry for help.

OK, one last thing, I promise: If the writers are clearing up Grissom’s unresolved storylines, doesn’t it seem like Lady Heather’s is still dangling out there? I hate to say it (again), but we might see her once more, this time riding off into the sunset with Grissom.



I have not watched the episode yet but I think it is on my agenda for tonight. But I wanted to comment on the CC. I have not done that for as long as you have but I have for a long time. I guess it started when I watched shows with some actors with foreign actors and couldn't quite get what they were saying. Also, in th days of rewinding tapes, I would have to do it two or three times to catch what they were saying. Drove me crazy. But now I can watch it with CC and not have to rewind. (Is that what you call it with DVR? :)

I brought this up to a friend of mine a few weeks ago and they thought I was brillant for thinking of it.... hhahah. I guess great minds think alike!

Back at ya when it I see the show. I read about the miniature killer coming around, why was I not surprised?