Alles Klar Herr Kommisar?

I don’t watch much television.

I start each morning on the treadmill, pinging back and forth between CNN’s Early Start and our local news.

That’s about it.

But I must admit that one of my favorite pastimes of late is to watch German television shows on my iPad via the magic of the ZDF app.

It’s interesting to watch the German news and get a different perspective on world events.

Among my favorite shows to watch, though, is “Soko Koeln” – a CSI-style drama. This one is set in Cologne, Germany, a city I lived in for a year while working for Radio Deutsche Welle.

The pattern for each episode goes something like this:

A dead body is found.

The special commission (Soko) sets about to solve the crime.

43 minutes later (in TV-time), they have ferreted out the guilty party or parties.

Cue the credits.

If only things were wrapped up so neatly in real life.

But of course they are not.

The police detectives on this show seem to always know just the right people to question, just the right questions to ask, and just the right object to dust for the incriminating fingerprints.

Everything somehow becomes clear – “Alles klar.”

Black and white. Suspect nabbed. Case closed.

This evening I watched one of my other favorites – “Die Rosenheim Cops.”

They got their man. (Believe it or not, the butler did it.)

As I watched the show, the day’s news stories continued to play across my mind – terrorists attacking innocent people at a shopping mall in Kenya; Christians being murdered during worship in Pakistan; and civil war continuing in Syria.

Unlike on TV, we don’t always have closure or understanding as to “why” these things occur. We don’t always see the guilty parties punished and brought to justice. We don’t always get closure.

“Alles Klar, Herr Kommisar?”



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