The End of an Era? 15 Years of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and Forensic TV

This event has now finished. Please see our events website for details of upcoming events at Brookes.

The End of an Era? 15 Years of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and Forensic TV

Who this event is for

  • Everyone


JHB Lecture Theatre, John Henry Brookes Building, Headington Campus, Gipsy Lane site



The End of an Era? 15 Years of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and Forensic TV 16-17 October, 2015. Oxford Brookes University, Oxford, UK.

In late September 2015, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (CBS, 2000-2015) finally wrapped its 15-season run with a two-hour finale, promised to feature the return of some of the series' original cast. The programme has been understood as re-defining the TV landscape of the new millennium in terms of its popularity and the resulting reversal of fortunes for its original broadcaster CBS, and its distributors and producers - including Alliance Atlantis and Jerry Bruckheimer, for whom the series presented a first – and very successful – foray into television production.

It popularised the focus on forensic science as investigative methodology and, as a result, helped to redefine narrative structure and verisimilitude in the crime genre. It also brought a focus on visual and aural display – of the crime scene but more importantly of the corpse – which created a specific visual aesthetic that has since been much emulated. Its popularity has sparked not just a number of spin-offs, extensions, exhibits, and merchandise but also a significant body of scholarly work that examines the variety of pleasures, displeasures and interests drawing audiences to the series. This includes the representation of the abject body but also its style, its quality, its merchandise, etc.

To mark the end of one of the most pivotal television shows of the 2000s, and perhaps also the wider forensic turn that has characterised crime television of the last two decades, we are organizing a two-day screening (Friday 16th October) and workshop (Saturday 17th October) at Oxford Brookes University (hosted by the Film Studies Research Unit), gathering scholars who have all contributed to the study of the crime genre and forensics in popular culture.

The event starts on Friday October 16th at 5pm, with a screening of the two-hour finale of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, followed by drinks and dinner.

On Saturday October 17th we will organize a number of round-table discussions, focused on pre-determined topics.

These might include:

• The impacts of CSI (on the crime genre, television and culture)

• Post-forensic crime television

• Forensic aesthetics

• The CSI Franchise

• Discourses on science and the body

• Issues of representation: gender, race and sexuality in CSI

• Transnational distribution and reception

• Mainstream or Exceptional? CSI, quality television and complex TV

• The history of forensic television

• Teaching CSI

• The future of research on forensic TV

Register by sending your Name, Affiliation, Contact Details and workshop interest to: before October 9th 2015. Please note that registration is free, as is a light lunch and refreshments on the Saturday, but participants have to pay for their own travel expenses, accommodation and additional meals. A detailed workshop schedule will be sent out to registered participants.