Choose Your Investigate Team

You know what? I’m bloody sick of men getting all the credit for solving crimes. So my challenge to you: If there was a difficult crime that needed solving, who would you pick as your investigative team?

The rules: They have to be employed in a professional capacity in some kind of investigative/crime-fighting position. I will allow PIs and such so long as that is their job.

My picks:

Catherine Willows from CSI. I only ever watch the show on-and-off but I was always impressed by her cool professionalism and the way she always got the bad guy. (I always missed the eps that promised ‘Catherine gets emotional’, or to that effect.)

Dr. Temperence ‘Bones’ Brennan from, you guessed it, Bones. She’s absoluetly awesome at understanding how someone died, and often why, by looking at their, well, bones.

Val McDermid’s Kate Brannigan. A PI by trade, she often solves the crime before the police do. And on a shoestring budget.

Your picks?


  1. says

    Renee Montoya The Question, and former detective with the Gotham City PD. Renee’s going to do the legwork – ask the right questions of the right people, face the bad guy, make the arrest, and be awesome while doing it.

    Maura Isles (Rizzoli and Isles) Walking Google. A bit of a fan of the woo, but she’s never wrong and she’s a top notch medical examiner

    Jane Tennison (Prime Suspect) Got to go with the best. And Helen Mirren!

  2. says

    October “Toby” Daye from Rosemary and Rue, etc. Half-human/half-fairy PI who can use magic to track the bad guys, etc. She’s not really sure where she fits but this just makes her more intensely loyal to those whom she has claimed.

    Agent Dana Scully from The X-Files. Willing to believe in the extraordinary, but constantly challenging her partner to rule out the ordinary first, which makes the case for the extraordinary even stronger. Bonus points because she’s both an FBI agent and a medical doctor: generally we see female doctors as “healing” types but Scully’s much more likely to use her medical degree to perform an autopsy or identify the monster of the week.

    Detective Inspector Mina Wentworth from The Iron Duke, etc. Not at all intimidated by nobility or social mores – in fact rather annoyed at people who think wealth/power or standards of normality ought to slow her down – so she’s able to investigate crimes with a clear eye. Also groundbreaking (in-universe) in terms of discrimination: she’s one of few women in the Victorian-era police force and the only person of color, which hampers her to the point of needing a bodyguard.

    Pretty sure I’ve used her for a different challenge, so I’m going to make her a bonus fourth: Lieutenant Karen Murphy from Storm Front, etc. She’s assigned to the “weird crimes” division and she’s one of the few cops able to keep an open mind and realize their perpetrators are vampires and wizards, which makes her success rate significantly higher than her predecessors’.

  3. Jenny says

    Since I’ve been watching NCIS this evening, Ziva David and, come to think of it, Abby Sciuto come top of my list.

    Now imagine introducing them to Jane Marple …

  4. Nina says

    Detective Kate Beckett from Castle – Right now I’ve got Castle on the brain since it’s the only one of my tv shows running new episodes right now, but also she is smart, tenacious, and gets the job done, even when the odds are against her.

    Kate Daniels from Ilona Andrews’ “Magic Bites” books – worked as a mercenary, then for the sort of magic cops, then opened her own PI business, she has valuable underworld contacts, she’s tough and tenacious, and she has some magic of her own to help with investigations.

    Guardswoman Beka Cooper from Tamora Pierce’s Tortall – she also has good contacts, including among the recently dead, plus she is smart and tenacious (I really like investigators that stick to the crime, I guess!), and she comes with a scent hound!

  5. goshawk says

    Oooh, I was going to call Beka, but I’ll try to pick three others.

    Emily Prentiss, from Criminal Minds. She’s experienced at stalking bad guys and has the profiling skills to get inside their heads, and she was once an undercover CIA agent. Anything they can dish, she can take, and make sure they wind up behind bars or dead.

    Jennifer “JJ” Jareau, also from CM. I can’t break up the team! Also, she has a perfect bullet-to-kill ratio, and she lies with the innocence of a tiny cherubic angel. They never see her coming.

    Sergeant Angua from Pratchett’s Discworld books, because who doesn’t want a werewolf’s nose on the case? Also, she’s smart and tough, never traits to be passed up lightly, and I think she’d get along with Emily and JJ.

  6. Em says

    Eames from Law & Order: Criminal Intent, who manages to hold her own as a highly competent detective despite being partnered with the Designated Genius Detective. She even manages to rescue herself from a serial killer in a realistic way (ie she doesn’t suddenly become a ninja with super strength), and is traumatized by it but doesn’t turn into a ball of helpless angst who just needs a male shoulder to cry on. (Goren is there for her. But like any good friend/coworker would be.)

  7. Em says

    Oh, and also Lilly Rush from Cold Case, the first female homicide detective in Philadelphia, who is determined that murder victims will not be forgotten and murderers won’t get away with it – no matter how long ago it happened. A lot of her cases revolve around crimes that didn’t get solved the first time around because no one cared enough (it was “only” a poor black kid/welfare mom/former drug addict/etc., or they locked up some guy who okay, didn’t have actual solid evidence pointing to him, but he totally looked guilty and it would be such a hassle to admit they were wrong and start over). She makes sure this time, someone cares.

    I’d also recommend Penelope Garcia from Criminal Minds for all your computer-based sleuthing. If she can’t find it, it probably doesn’t exist.

  8. Anna M says

    Myka Bering from Warehouse 13. For supernatural crimes. I’m sure she’s handy with other stuff too.
    Claudia Donovan-also Warehouse 13. Computer whizz.
    Barbara Gordon as either Batgirl or Oracle. Has detective skills as both.

  9. SunlessNick says

    1. I need a forensic specialist, so I’m going to go with Jill Faciane from Diana Rowland’s Kara Gillian books. As well as the skills of her job, she’s got the grit to handle both the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and discovering that the world is full of demons and summoners (including her long-time friend).

    2. And actually, the aforementioned Kara Gillian is my second pick, to handle the detective stuff, with searches, interviews, and kicking in doors where necessary – she can also summon demons to help with that.

    3. And finally a profiler – another of Val McDermid’s characters, this time Fiona Cameron – she works via geographical rather than psychological data, which I think would spark less cynicism from Jill and Kara.

  10. says


    Damn straight I’d pick SGT Angua. Have you seen the film adaptation of ‘Going Postal’? They did a very good job depicting her there, even if her screen time was limited.

    Other than SGT Angua, I’d take DI Liz Kavanaugh from Charles Stross’ ‘Rule 34′, and Persephone Hazard, Ramona Random, and Dominique O’Brien from Stross’ ‘Laundry Files’ novels.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *