Forensic Files: Real Reality TV
I’m a big fan of Forensic Files, one of the most successful true crime shows ever. It pioneered the use of dramatic re-enacted crimes interspersed with interviews with the detectives, families, and witnesses from the cases, along with scientific explanations of forensic tools. Some of the episodes have to be seen to be believed, like the Canadian doctor that fooled three different “unbeatable” DNA tests, or the mad scientist neighbor who manufactured poisoned soda (in sealed bottles) because the teenagers were too loud.
The series ended in 2011 after fourteen seasons, yet in 2016 it was still on its home cable channel (HLN) practically all of the time in massive marathons, accounting for more than half of their entire programming lineup. In 2019 it remains on for hours back-to-back nightly, replaying the 400 episodes that were produced.
But are we really seeing all of the episodes?
If Forensic Files is new to you and you’d like to check it out, good news: it’s available almost everywhere, at least in the United States. Netflix and Amazon Video both have “collections”, which feature a partial selection of episodes per season. Filmrise, a small privately-held film distribution company, acquired the digital distribution rights and streams a much wider selection on their Roku channel.
For the die-hard fans, who want to make sure they’ve seen them all, I noticed the Filmrise lineup – the most comprehensive of all the streaming sources – contains holes. For whatever reason, possibly due to licensing, there are missing episode numbers here and there. By comparing the official list at Wikipedia against the Filmrise listings, I’ve located 26 missing episodes among the 400, spread out across the seasons.
List of Missing Episodes
Many of these missing episodes can be found on YouTube. I was surprised to see how much of Season 7 wasn’t available, although Seasons 4, 9, 12, and 13 are fully complete. Please note that if you’ve only watched on Amazon or Netflix, those collections are missing quite a few more than what’s shown here. If you really want to ensure you’ve seen them all, work your way through Filmrise’s library and use this list to search through YouTube by title.