As Seen on

The Best Film and TV Detectives – What Did They Get Right?

There’s nothing better than curling up on the sofa and watching an entertaining film or TV series. But, in our profession as UK private investigators, sometimes the screen is closer to fact than fiction. 

We admit some depictions of private detectives are stronger than others, as certain facts may get lost due to entertainment reasons. But, it’s always great to see them get it right! So, let’s have a look at some of the most famous film and TV detectives and which ones are the most accurate.   

Who Are The Best TV Detectives?

Listed below are some of the best TV detectives.

Jake Gittes – Chinatown

Forget it, Jake… It’s Chinatown. One of the most popular film private investigators, Jake Gittes (played by Jack Nicholson) delved too far into the dark underworld of Los Angeles and was caught in the crossfires of a high-profile individual after being assigned a simple case of covert surveillance. 

But, unlike other private detectives in films, it’s nice to see actual private investigation services taking place. Jake is hired as a private investigator by a woman to follow her husband, who she suspects of having an affair. Performing covert surveillance, Jake keeps his distance, without detection and even goes incognito with a partner on a row boat, in order to take incriminating photographic evidence. At Verity Henton, we have taken on various cases surrounding relationships. Depending on the circumstances, our team of male and female detectives offer discreet services of surveillance to confirm or resolve any suspicions. Find out more about our services here.     

Velma Dinkley – Scooby Doo

Would the Mystery Gang have actually solved any mysteries without Velma? Of course, all of the gang had their own quirks, but it was typically Velma who first solved the case. Much like other fictional private investigators, she always kept her conclusions for the end.

It’s hard to say how realistic the private investigation is in the series, due to the talking dog. But, as the most logical out of the gang, Velma dives into clues surrounding the case, utilising the internet and in more recent depictions, social media. More often than not, our UK private investigators are behind a screen. We use various resources and databases to perform background checks and gather all the evidence we can, before heading out for any surveillance. 

Jessica Fletcher – Murder, She Wrote

With 12 seasons and various nominations and accolades, Murder She Wrote was one of the most successful and longest-running television series of all time. Played by the late Angela Lansbury, Jessica Fletcher was the best amateur sleuth, using her own experience as a crime author in real life. Without using violence or illegal activity, Jessica used a combination of covert surveillance and interviewing suspects to determine the outcome. 

Much like Jessica Fletcher, our UK private investigators utilise their own experiences in their investigations. However, instead of writers of fiction, we are ex-police detectives from a secret anti-corruption unit. We use the skills and resources that we developed in the police force but translated for various cases, including protective surveillance and physical penetration testing. 

Thomas Magnum – Magnum PI

Thomas Magnum has had two depictions; Jay Hernandez in the reboot and the more iconic Tom Selleck in the 80s. Though “P.I.” is in the title, we seldom find similarities between our work and this TV series.

One of the biggest misconceptions is that private investigators are always gunfights and huge explosions. Whereas, this is not the case. Our UK private investigators conduct various background checks and spend most of our time covertly watching certain subjects to gauge their daily routines. 

Verity Henton

Verity Henton is a team of UK private investigators. We have a team of male and female detectives that operate across the country in a variety of roles. Our services offer a full range of discreet and comprehensive investigations, including background checks, tracing people and detailed surveillance. 

For more information on our investigation services, get in touch today! Just fill in our form or give us a call at 01277 564007 (Essex) or 020 3916 5917 (London) to speak to our team today. 

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