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S11E05 – Dear Deadly

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Welcome back to San Francisco Fletcherfans, where JB has popped in to discuss the serialization of one of her books in the local paper with editor and inexplicable Australian Harry Mordecai. Harry Mordecai is being played by John Rhys Davies who is very much not Australian but is doing a pretty good job of pretending to be one.

It is teetering on cockney but overall very well played. 8 Rupert Murdoch’s out of 10

Paper editor, John Galloway, has decided to resign in the face of Harry’s constant meddling but has been convinced to stay a month. Harry is sorry to tell Jessica he has to move his meeting with her until the next day, but he has lots of ideas for editing her story – making the victim a sexy career woman in the space industry instead of an old man, and she dies in a jacuzzi instead.

(Trust me, don’t say this to an Australian if you ever want them to make sense again. Also, sorry to all the people who asked me if Australians spoke English when I was backpacking. They do, and what I was speaking to you was a combination of throat noises and Indonesian)

There’s plenty of other shenanigans transpiring at the paper. Journalist Alexis Hill is up for a prize, finance reporter Max Charles is into some shady dealings and Loretta, the paper’s gossip columnist is swamped with mail, including a death threat from a creepy looking guy we see at the start of the episode. The mail boy Troy also delivers an old copy of the paper Loretta was looking for – specifically an article about the death of a homeless activist. Loretta is being played by Eileen Brennan and there is a 100% chance I’m going to smash through writing this so I can watch Clue this afternoon. Loretta gets a call from security – there’s a homeless lady called Nell who would like a word. Loretta asks him to send her up. Alexis, who is in the middle of thanking her colleague Emma Kemp for voting for her for the prize, is puzzled to see Nell in the newsroom as Nell was one of the sources for her story about homeless people. Nell isn’t there for her though, she wants to chat to Loretta. Nell saw something that belonged to the dead homeless guy but it’s missing. Loretta tells her to keep looking.  Later, while Harry decides to offer his opinion to Alexis about her article, Loretta has a quiet word to Max Charles about his obvious shady tactics in his articles – she knows he’s making a fortune writing pieces that cause stocks to tank and she warns him to be very careful.

Jessica wanders into Loretta’s office for lunch but instead of ordering in they go eat in the park, where Nell pops up again to tell Loretta she still hasn’t found what she’s looking for. Everyone else adjourns to the local bar where Troy the mail guy tries to pick up Emma and Harry has an idea to throw Alexis a party to celebrate her imminent prize win. Later, Loretta informs Harry that if John leaves she’ll quit too. As night falls, the staff make their way out of the lobby when creepy old mate from the start of the episode shoots Loretta and hightails it out of there.

Phew. There’s a lot going on you guys.

Loretta is fine, just a bullet graze on her arm and a broken hearing aid, and checks herself out of the hospital the next morning. She returns to work, where she has a phone message from Nell saying she’s at the usual place. Loretta calls her back and assures Nell she’s fine and to keep looking for the thing. John wanders in and tells her she shouldn’t be at work. He arranges to have her stay at a hotel room and promises to have her hearing aid delivered as soon as it’s fixed. Meanwhile, Jessica refuses to make the editorial changes Harry requests.

SHE IS THE ONE WHO KNOCKS

Harry is impressed with Jessica and says they’ll do it her way. Jess celebrates by bumping into the detective investigating Loretta’s shooting but he has no news. Harry and Alexis put their heads together and come up with a suitably hysterical story about the shooting. Later, John sends Troy over to pick up Loretta’s hearing aid and drop it at the hotel.

Jess and John head to the pub for lunch. Alexis wanders past, having just filed her story about Loretta. John asks her if Loretta’s hearing aid worked okay and Alexis tells him Loretta seemed to be fine. She goes over to tell Harry about her story, as a call comes in from Lieutenant Evans to say they’ve arrested the shooter – they tried to get hold of Loretta but the line was busy. John and JB are in the neighbourhood and say they will go tell her the good news – making sure to tell Harry and Alexis as they walk past their table.

Unfortunately, when they get to the hotel they find Loretta dead on the floor. The police arrive a short time later and quickly discover that Loretta’s real name is Claire Hogan and that she took over the Loretta column when the original retired. They also find the words John Kill Me etched into the glass of the coffee table, which is news to John but enough for Lieutenant Evans. Jessica isn’t so convinced and demonstrates it would have been impossible for Loretta/Claire to have written on the desk with her ring, but Evans is done.

Down at the newspaper office Alexis is grateful for Max’s congratulations about her Loretta story, but also she knows that he was up to no good with his stock reporting and that she’ll keep her mouth shut if he suggests to Harry that she’d make a great acting editor. Jessica does a bit of sleuthing and works out Max’s side hustle and confronts him at the bar where he’s interviewing a martini. He confesses to the scam, swears he didn’t kill Loretta/Claire but he did go to the suite, as he has a key, but bailed when he saw her dead at about 5pm.

Jess learns that John has been charged with murder and heads straight to the police station, where she outs John as the real writer of Loretta Lee’s column – he took over when the previous writer left, and Loretta/Claire agreed to be the public Loretta. Evans is stumped, but a chance sentence about the time gives Jess an idea. She rushes back to the newsroom where she gets Troy to confess to lying about what time he dropped the hearing aid off – he took himself off to watch All The Presidents Men for the afternoon before picking up and dropping off the hearing aid.

Jess then goes to see Nell the homeless woman, who gives Jessica the thing she was looking for on behalf of Loretta. Back at the newsroom, Harry announces he’s sold the paper and brought a satellite news network, and Jess confronts the killer.

I’ve got nothing.

Nell, it turns out, had discovered that Alexis stole her friend who died’s journal and was publishing it as her story. Nell told Loretta, who confronted Alexis and received a water jug to the head for her trouble.

This was a good episode, you guys. I am a raging nerd for movies and TV shows set in newspapers and I always will be, despite what certain world leaders say. Anyway, I’m off for a couple of weeks to lie on a beach in Queensland with no social media and help Mum turn a Significant Birthday But I Can’t Tell You Which Or She Will Come After Me.

Later gang!

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S11E04 – Death in Hawaii

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Aloha Fletcherfans!

JB is in Hawaii for some much-needed R&R after an exhausting book tour. Of course, that’s not going to happen – there’s an election on and wouldn’t you know it, Jess’s friend Rebecca’s grandson Jeff Kincaid is running for senator against his brother Danny’s boss, Randall Thompson who, as it turns out is being photographed kissing a woman who isn’t his wife. Kissing is a strong word for it though.

Man, I wish I was in Hawaii right now, it’s freezing.

Never let it be said that I’m above a lei joke.

Jess bumps into Rebecca’s son Matt (who happens to own the hotel) when she checks in and gets a sweet sweet upgrade to the penthouse. They don’t have long to chat before a call comes in for JB, someone wanting her on their talk show. JB politely declines, and Matt swears he didn’t tell anyone she was coming.

Over at the campaign office, the tape of Randall Thompson has arrived, much to the delight of campaign financier Brett Reynolds and horror of Danny. Campaign manager Liz Dougherty suggests they wait and see what the afternoon poll results are before they decide. Danny says he’s offered his opinion, and that if they use the tape he is gone. Danny pays a visit to his fiance, Sharon Matsumoto, to get his dive gauge back so he can go diving, but she hasn’t finished testing it – apparently, it got tampered with, someone is out to get Danny. Sharon’s phone rings and Danny tells her he’ll see her later.

JB is about to head out and about when another request for an interview arrives, as does Liz Dougherty. She confesses she was the one who alerted the media when she knew JB was coming in the thought it might lead to more votes, but swears she will stop.

Over at his office, Danny meets with his boss Randall, who gives him photos of Brett Reynolds meeting with renowned money launderer Martin Osborn. Danny says he still doesn’t have enough to charge either of them and Randall flips his lid, accusing Danny of dragging his feet to make sure Jeff continues to receive funds from Brett. Danny tells Randall that far from it, he, in fact, has a man undercover in Brett’s office to get the final proof they need.

The man himself, Joe Yoshanaga, has impressed Brett Reynolds with his recent work, to the point where he has been promoted to another branch over on Hilo. Joe, stalling, says he’d like another day and a half an hour meeting with Reynolds to straighten out one more account before he goes. Brett decides that’s fine and Joe departs just as Martin Osborn wanders in.

Sorry guys this is all terribly fact-based and accurate. I’m full of a cold (plus the stupid chronic fatigue). Also, GC is asleep after a long night patrolling my windowsill against a brushtail possum she saw loitering outside about four nights ago and I’m trying to get this done before she starts exercising editorial control.

ANYWAY. Martin Osborn is not in Hong Kong as Reynolds thought, and instead would like to know how the election he purchased is coming. (Clearly, Osborn is short for Osbornovich, I mean what?) Reynolds tells him everything is under control, but the biggest threat to Jeff Kincaid losing the election is Danny. He’s the problem they need to take care of.

But who cares, because LUAU TIME.

While the hula is being hula-ed and the drums are being drummed, Kincaid matriarch Rebecca Kincaid speaks to a gaggle of reporters with her grandson Jeff.

THIS IS AN OUTRAGE.

Liz takes Jeff off for a quiet word and suggests it might be the perfect time to announce their engagement but Jeff won’t have a bar of it. Jeff runs into Brett, who suggests he just gives him more money, and then Danny, who narrates the hula dance to the point where I stopped listening because the hukilau was way more interesting.

The poll gets released and Jeff has dropped another point. It is decided to release the tape and Danny refuses to have any part of it. Brett Reynolds accuses him of siding with his boss, there’s a scuffle, but it breaks up quickly.  That night, Danny meets with Joe who tells him his plan to get the incriminating file from Brett Reynolds’s computer. He just needs to send it via modem to a secure line, and Danny has just the computer in mind.

The next day JB lusts after the orchids that head gardener Ben Kamaka is transporting to the botanical gardens before heading up to the old sugar mill. As he leaves, Ben warns Danny to be careful, and JB’s ears prick up. Rebecca explains that someone is trying to kill Danny, as much as he wants to laugh it off. Danny declares it’s time for a swim and heads down to the beach while JB continues her in-depth investigation of Rebecca’s garden.

Danny deposits his things on the beach and starts swimming out. He’s soon joined by a figure in a dinghy who starts throwing chum into the water. (Side note, I genuinely think there was an opportunity for Danny to try and climb into the boat and attack his attacker, but that might be the cold and flu drugs talking). The boat departs, and fins start to appear in the water around Danny.

Cut to Jeff and Liz standing on the cliff looking worried. It would appear Danny has not returned from the swim and the coast guard are out in force looking for him. Liz asks if she should put out a statement, but Jeff thinks it might be weird coming right after the release of the video. Liz tells him she hasn’t released it yet, what with what’s happened. Jeff loses it and thinks this will cost him the election. Cold, bro.

Unaware of all the drama, Joe Yoshanaga sneaks into Brett Reynolds’ office and transmits the incriminating file to what turns out to be Danny’s computer at the old sugar mill. Meanwhile, Reynolds is at the campaign office on the phone to someone bragging about a recording he’s acquired of a conversation Danny Kincaid had at his office. Jess decides to do a little detecting down at Danny’s office but is thrown out pretty quickly by Randall Thompson.

The Thompson video goes to air, and JB watches on along with Sharon at the police station. Lab report comes back on Danny’s shirt and shoes but there are no clues. Jess wonders about Danny’s phone she saw he had on him but it’s missing. This gives Jess an idea, and they head over to the sugar mill. Jess and Sharon storm in to find a figure holding a gun, standing over the body of poor Ben the gardener. Sharon draws her gun and orders the figure to turn around – it’s Danny. He just got there too, found the gun outside and picked it up without thinking before coming inside and finding Ben’s body. Sharon is pissed. Jessica notices the destroyed computer and a missing floppy disk. Naww.

Back at the house, Danny explains the last few hours – how he narrowly avoided becoming shark food, swam back to shore and grabbed his bike and headed up to the sugar mill to retrieve the file Joe sent him. He can’t identify the boat driver, apart from they had a silver stripe on one shoulder. Down at the campaign office, Jeff is relieved to hear Danny is okay but devastated about Ben. Brett says it was probably vagrants but good news, he’s up by four points!

Yay politics. /sarcasm

Side note, JB is rocking the fuschia in this episode.

FAHSHUN DARLINK FAHSHUN

JB goes to Danny’s office for a spot of sleuthing and finds a bug in a pot plant. You know what I mean. Randall Thompson bursts in demanding answers and JB suggests the woman in the video is not his lover but his daughter that he brought over from Vietnam along with her ailing mother. Randall confirms this is indeed the case and confesses he never told his wife or children because reasons.

Down at the police station, there are no updates on the bug or the wetsuits with silver stripes but a hot tip has placed Matt Kincaid’s car in the area of the sugar mill at the time of the murder, and a search has found red dust and a floppy disk full of evidence incriminating Brett Reynolds. Matt swears he was at the hotel at the time and had no reason to kill Ben. Sharon suggests he doesn’t leave Honolulu.

A wake is held for Ben while his ashes are scattered at sea. Sharon tells JB they finally found the boat, but can’t track it to an owner. They did find a tube of antibiotics next to it. Jess gazes at a guitar case and works the whole thing out.

Nothing good comes from politics, I’m telling you now.

Yeah, she did the whole thing to make sure that Jeff would win the election. Reynolds used her to make sure he got his way too. Ben was wrong place wrong time.

Now if you’ll excuse me I’m just going to google flights to Hawaii and take all the cold and flu drugs. K bye.

Later gang!

S11E03 – To Kill A Legend

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Some dude is being bumped off in a burning antiques shop/factory in London, but never mind that because it’s Joshua Peabody Day in Cabot Cove.

The Fletchmobile is out, you know it’s serious.

For reasons known only to themselves, a documentary film crew have decided to make a film about Joshua Peabody, and they’ve brought out the big guns

It’s a crack cast of filmmakers to be sure

As Cabot Cove’s most famous and always correct resident, JB is narrating the documentary and delivering it flawlessly. The director, Richard Hawkes (aka Jeffrey Nordling) wants to include a music box as part of a transition sequence, but it’s not working. Jessica suggests the Godfreys antique shop in town as a place that could get it fixed.

Thomas Godfrey gets to work on repairing the music box while his wife Nancy (aka April O’Neil from the original Ninja Turtles) tells Seth that his costume 100% absolutely was shrunk after a flood and that’s why it doesn’t fit properly. She also tells JB that her drawers have arrived – JB is delighted but notices with her keen powers of observation that the handles don’t match. Nancy apologises profusely and swears she will get that fixed post haste.

Thomas declares he’s found the reason for the faulty music box – it’s a piece of paper jammed in the mechanism. Jess unfolds the page and discovers it’s a letter to Joshua Peabody (who died in Cabot Cove possibly) from George Washington accusing him of treason and ordering him to stand trial.

Seth is unsurprised and says the way the world is going these days it doesn’t surprise him that another hero has been shot down in flames.

Never dedicate a day to your heroes. Except for Tom Hanks. There should be a Tom Hanks Day.

Armed with this Startling Revelation, Jessica goes to see the last descendants of Joshua Peabody, Edith Peabody and her daughter Louise. Louise doesn’t seem too shaken either, but Edith is having none of it.

Edith is not going to stand for this outrage.

Edith insists the letter is a hoax and must be destroyed, but Jessica insists that either way it needs to be examined at the university lab.

Edith is becoming my favourite person in this episode

Over at the Godfrey’s antique store, it’s clear that there’s trouble in paradise – Thomas is pissed at Nancy for stuffing up their best client’s order when they are so close to losing everything, and Nancy is pissed that Thomas blew what money they had on advertising for Joshua Peabody Day. Nancy storms off, just as a creepy British dude (who watched the burning building in London, spoilers) wanders in to ask about Dutch colonial pieces of which the Godfrey’s have none.

Dutch colonial pieces is almost definitely code for meth.

Early results are in on the incriminating letter, and Dr Roy Blakely informs Jess, Mort and Seth that at the moment the document looks real but tests will confirm it. Mort worries about what this will do to local tourism, but Jess finds it odd that the letter was even kept, considering the home team won the Battle of Cabot Cove, where Joshua Peabody died.  Word of the letter has reached the film crew office too, and while the producer Frederick Chiltern Bob Kendall and the director of photography Amelia Farnum are adamant the documentary needs to be about the discovery, Richard Hawkes is not interested until the letter is proven real or fake and ends the discussion by taking Louise Peabody out to dinner.

Back at the Sheriff’s office, Edith has turned up demanding to know why no one has been arrested for planting the letter. Mort tells her there’s no evidence of a break-in at Peabody House.

Edith is going rogue in 3…2…1…

 

The news doesn’t get any better for Edith, as JB and Seth wander in to inform them that according to the lab the paper and ink are a match for two hundred years old. They can’t prove it’s a fake, even if it’s a good one. Edith blames Jessica entirely for everything ever.

The next morning Edith yells at everyone while removing a noose and a traitor sign from the statue of Joshua Peabody. Tourism might be down in the Cove but every journalist within radius has turned up to talk about the letter. Louise wants to talk to Nancy Godfrey about the uniforms but Nancy declares she will speak to Richard Hawke herself and would prefer Nancy didn’t get in the way.

Apparently, he was in an episode of Press Gang, which is a sign from the universe I need to rewatch Press Gang for the eleven billionth time.

The reenactment begins and goes off without a hitch, except for a rearing horse nearly trampling Scott the sound guy, and Richard having a tantrum and calling a wrap on the day when the soldiers start lecturing him on musket assembly. That night, a smug Bob Kendall tells Richard he’s out and Amelia will direct the documentary.

The next day Jessica receives a Massive Plot Point from Scott the sound guy to do with how they record sound for the documentary.

(Me being mansplained).

Later, Edith pops around House Fletcher to apologise for blaming Jess for everything, but immediately takes it all back when Mort shows up to announce that the paper used in the letter was also 200 years old. That night, CBG watches Edith come out of the production office and disappear into the shadows.

Back at house Fletcher Mort and Seth have dropped in for a cup of coffee and to complain about the new director, when Seth suddenly gives JB an idea about the letter and Mort gets a phone call from Deputy Andy. The production office is on fire and Amelia Farnum is dead. Scott the sound guy is the only member of the production crew on the scene, and he hasn’t seen Louise, Bob or Richard for a while. He mentions to Mort that there’s a missing prop gun, which might well be the thing used to clock Amelia over the head.

The next day CBG bumps into Richard Hawkes and tells him he’s worked out the whole deal – how a small-time director is about to make it big with a historical detective story when he’s bumped from the project, only to be reinstated when the new director turns up dead. Meanwhile, the Godfreys deliver JB’s drawers to her and she gets a phone call from the Prof down at the lab.

Over at the production office, Richard is announcing that the focus of the documentary is going to change to the Washington Letter when JB rolls in to announce the letter is a very clever forgery. Everyone is stunned, Bob is quick to blame the whole thing on Richard but Mort says they just don’t know enough yet. Mort gets a call from Andy who has tracked down CBG and is bringing him to the sheriff’s office. The CBG turns out to be an infamous forger according to Interpol, and Mort would like to hear what he’s doing in town.  CBG turns out to be the actual author of the fake letter, hired by a guy in London called Alexander Sandsby (the aforementioned dude who got bumped off at the beginning). When he saw Alexander had been murdered, CBG thought there might be some money in it for him so did some digging and ended up in Cabot Cove. He still doesn’t know who hired Sandsby, but does know who he saw the night of the murder – Edith Peabody. Edith later confirms she went to see Amelia to beg her not to use the letter but didn’t get anywhere and left in a huff. Deputy Andy finds the missing gun in her car and Mort has no choice but to hold her on suspicion.

Mort and Seth seem to be content that Edith is guilty, but the end of a roll of paper towel gives Jess an idea, and they go back to the production office for a look. Scott confirms there’s some missing audio that he can’t find anywhere.

A short sting operation later and all is revealed…

That is not cowabunga.

It’s the same old story. Nancy fell in love with Richard somewhere, they started having a Thing, they hatched the plot together, their conversation about it got recorded, Amelia found out and so it goes.

Later Fletcherfans

S11E02 – Amsterdam Kill

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Amsterdam! Home of tulips, windmills and pretty fantastic coffee shops. Also, it turns out home of diamond merchants and publishing conferences at which Our Heroine has been asked to attend.

Jessica bumps into her old pal Nigel in reception, who informs her the hotel has given her the best room at his request. They also bump into Philip De Koenig, local diamond merchant, grouch, and owner of what can only be described as sloth face.

For real though.

Philip invites them up to his suite for some bubbles and a chat but the arrival of his pilot Nick Halsey gives JB and Nigel the chance to escape and go about their business. Nigel has a call in his room but will meet JB downstairs later. JB pops a carnation in his buttonhole as he goes.

Nigel gets to his room as the phone rings, picks it up and says “Yes, it’s happening, when can you get here?” There’s a knock on the door from room service, which is weird you guys because Nigel didn’t order room service. The waiter whips out a tranquillizer gun and pops a dart into Nigel’s neck. Jessica leaves her room a short time later and nods to the waiter, not realising that Nigel is crammed into the food trolley.

Meanwhile, Philip is strolling the streets of Amsterdam arguing with his wife Lydia, who wants to spend money that Philip needs to fix his plane. Lydia departs for some window shopping as Harry Tigner rolls up, informing Philip that he needs the cash up front or there’s no sale. It would appear that Philip is into some weapons dealing as well as diamond sales.  Back at the hotel, Jess arrives downstairs for her panel, but Nigel has mysteriously pulled out due to food poisoning. The panel host assures Jess that according to his secretary he’s resting in his room. (Actually, he’s drugged in a tulip field next to a windmill, did I mention this was The Netherlands?)

Lydia decides to skip the window shopping and sell some of her jewellery and is horrified to discover that her necklace is a fake. It would seem that Philip had the same idea she did and replaced all her jewellery with fakes. Back at the hotel Jessica bathes in the glory of another successful public speaking gig and runs into journalist Monika Vidal who would like to interview her but Jess has other plans right now, i,e checking in on Nigel. She calls his room but is informed he has checked out. Monika walks past a man and takes a piece of paper. Jess checks in with the front desk but they didn’t see Nigel leave, he used the express checkout service in his room and was gone.

Jess decides to take matters into her own hands and goes to see Inspector Van Horn but he seems to think there’s nothing to worry about and he has his hands full. Jess recognises some mug shots on his desk as being from the paper that morning and Van Horn tells her they are of Hendrik Kuyper, a victim of a hit and run. Van Horn is interested to hear that Philip De Koenig agrees with Jess but insists Nigel has probably gone home to England.

Cut to Lydia and Nick, in which we discover they are having an affair and Lydia wants Philip dead.

Back at the hotel Jess is still looking for word on Nigel but is getting nowhere. A passing man introduces himself as Colin Biddle and tells her he just saw Nigel at the airport. He heads off to his room and Jess asks the front desk if they returned Nigel’s passport to him, which of course they did not. Later, Biddle pops into the nearest telephone box and calls the kidnappers, who want their money now.

Shenanigans a-plenty. Also, the kidnapper is totes a woman, I’m calling it now. I haven’t actually seen the second half of this episode yet because every time I try and watch it the cat jumps on the keyboard because she needs to be what I’m looking at at all times except when she doesn’t want to be looked at.

Biddle returns to his room but is hijacked at the door by a suspicious JB who wants to know how Nigel was boarding a plane to London without a passport.

Not for nothing but Angie Lans rocks a cream suit like nobody’s business.

Biddle tries to deny it but Jessica has it all worked out – Biddle and Nigel are British intelligence. Biddle tells her to stay out of it and is annoyed that she’s already gone to the police. Jess tells him she did but that Van Horn didn’t seem too perturbed by it all. Jess wants to help in any way, but Biddle says she should leave it to the experts.

Sidebar: ages ago I had a discussion with my friend Owen about what Hogwarts House Jessica Fletcher would belong to (you know, the sort of conversation everybody has), and this illustrates my point. She is 100% Slytherin. There’s no justice unless she’s delivering it and there’s no one who can possibly deliver it except her. That my friends is boss mode.

Anyway, doing the complete opposite of what she’s told, Jess cons a passing housekeeper to let her into Nigel’s room where she finds the tranq dart. She hears someone come in and hides in the bathroom. As the footsteps draw close, she rummages around in her bag to find a weapon.

(Quietly judging myself for this one, this is terrible and I 100% should not be laughing right now)

The intruder turns out to be Inspector Van Horn, who is just taking a casual look over things. Van Horn is investigating Philip De Koenig, who he thinks is responsible for the death of Hendrik Kuyper the criminal turned police informant (as it happens). Jess thinks it’s all terribly interesting but she must dash.

Over in De Koenig’s room Nick tells Philip that the plane is going to be fixed in 24 hours, but Philip has other cash flow problems. He is summoned to the bedroom by Lydia who wants help getting a necklace done up. Looking at the necklace Philip remembers his friend who sold it to him, and wonders if he might advance him the five hundred grand he needs to give Harry Tigner. He picks up the phone and discovers Nick is already on the line hatching a scheme with someone. Philip says nothing, but after Nick leaves he gets on the phone and asks the operator to redial his last call.

Jess continues her investigation down in the kitchens where she establishes the room service waiter she saw was not a staff member. She examines the trolleys, finds the squeaky one she saw earlier, and finds the red carnation she put in Nigel’s buttonhole. She goes straight to Biddle to tell him what she’s discovered, and he’s less than enthusiastic to learn she’s still involving herself. A call comes in from his bosses…

Biddle needs to learn his place, frankly.

…and then from the kidnapper demanding payment. Biddle manages to stall them but they haven’t bought themselves much time.

Downstairs Jessica runs into the journalist again, who really wants to be able to tell people she interviewed Nigel and JB in the same day. Jessica is interested to hear she had spoken to Nigel and she tells her she interviewed him at breakfast – suntan, sparkly eye and a carnation in his buttonhole. Jess excuses herself and goes to the front desk, where she receives a message from Philip De Koenig asking to meet her that night. When she arrives at his suite, however, he is super dead.

Jessica is summoned to Van Horn’s office, but before too much discussion can take place Biddle appears, announcing himself as a rep from JB’s publisher in England and warning her not to say anything further. Van Horn has already figured out that he’s dealing with British intelligence, and he’s not happy that he wasn’t previously informed. A colleague wanders in and says something Dutch and Van Horn tells them they are free to go, but he needs their passports.

Back at the hotel, Jess bumps into a hysterical Lydia De Koenig who has no money and has only just learned that the plane they were waiting on getting repaired was fixed the previous day and that Nick Halsey had already planned to leave at noon without telling her. This gives JB an idea and she gets on the phone to the Amsterdam News, which is obviously the name of the local newspaper.

Back at the police station Van Horn is interrogating Harry Teiger, who admits to swapping guns for diamonds but nothing else. Before long another cop wanders in with the lab report showing the fingerprints from the knife and the note from De Koenig.

At the hotel, the ransom money has arrived, and Jessica explains to Biddle that she thinks Halsey and Monika the journalist are in it together – there’s no one working at the newspaper with Monika’s name. Biddle is intrigued but is focussed on delivering the ransom and getting Nigel back. He tells Jessica to go back to her room but she says nope, she’s coming too. She’s packed sandwiches and water and everything. (WTF?)

Biddle thanks her but he’s going alone. There’s a knock on the door – it’s Van Horn, and he’s there to arrest JB for the murder of De Koenig.

Because sure she did.

The arrest turns out to be a ruse, to get JB to come clean on what she knows. Van Horn is convinced everything is connected but just can’t work out how. Jess looks at a vase of tulips and has an idea.

A short phone call later, they tail their man to a windmill (guys this is in The Netherlands, have I mentioned that?) and BAM.

Well I’m not sure I saw that coming.

If I’ve got this right (and I’m hungry so I might not), Biddle was in cahoots with Monika and Nick Halsey to kidnap Nigel, De Koenig found out so Biddle killed him. He lifted the prints from the water glass JB had and set her up.

So wait – Biddle wasn’t secret service? He was just some guy? Nigel’s not either? Well, they got me. And now I’m getting breakfast. Please enjoy this painting Van Horn did of Our Heroine while I feed my face.

COME AT ME PANCAKES

 

 

 

S11E01 – A Nest of Vipers

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Welcome to the second last season of Murder She Wrote oh god.

Welcome to Season 11 Fletcherfans and more specifically welcome to the jungle.

Richmond are doing very well, thank you for asking. #YellowAndBackToBack #Hopefully

And by jungle I mean the Los Angeles Animal Park, home of the greatest game of all – shadowy figures ratting out their employers to reporters.

Is this the first time I’ve made this joke? No. Will it be the last? No.

The shadowy figure is keen to take down park director Norman Gilford and wants to enlist the moustachioed Jimmy Russell into the fight. Apparently, Gilford is corrupt up the wazoo and there is a petition to have him removed. Russell returns a key to the figure and says this better be real.

More importantly than all that, Our Heroine is in town researching for her new book in which someone gets bumped off and the killer tries to make it look like an animal did it. She’s getting a lift from Kelly Michaels, golf cart driver and park operations assistant manager according to IMDB (there are like eleven million people in this episode and I’m s-to-the-leepy so bear with me on this one guys ok?) Kelly is pulled over by another angry moustache, this time it’s City Councilman Joe Gandolph who isn’t happy about something in the paper that apparently Norman  said. Kelly shrugs and floors it – she promised Norman she’d take JB straight to see him.

They arrive at the park HQ as Norman’s assistant Bea Huffington eavesdrops on Norman’s interview/argument with Jimmy Russell about corruption in the park and Joe Gandolph’s investigation of it. Norman throws him out of his office and immediately apologises to JB for all this unsightly yelling. JB tries to explain she’s on a tight deadline but he won’t have a bar of it, he orders Bea to get coffee and he wants to hear all about Jessica’s book.

Down at the vet clinic, Jessica bumps into veterinarian Dr Ray Stinson and animal caretaker Ted Fraley gossiping about Norman and his latest attempts to not pay for things (this is set after the 1994 earthquake and there’s a whole thing about trying to rebuild). Bea tells Ray that he’s wanted in the boss’s office but Ray has an elephant situation happening (don’t we all) and promises Jess he’ll see her later. Ted has some ideas for Jess’s book but also some ideas about asking Bea out, but she tells him she has to cancel on their date, something came up.

All living creatures adore her.

Meanwhile, Ray meets Norman and Kelly and is told in no uncertain terms (by Norman) have nothing to do with the petition or anything involving Norman’s departure. Ray tells him he has no interest in Norman’s job but that he should be more concerned about Mark Attwater and the Earthspeak mob who want the park to close. Kelly thinks that’s not true but Norman thinks she’s biased on account of she’s having a thing with Mark.

Jess continues her tour of the animal kingdom.

It’s a fierce-off

Ted then introduces her to a black mamba who might feature in JB’s book as a murder suspect.

SHAKESPEARE SNAKE IS BACK YOU GUYS OR AS HE SHOULD HAVE BEEN CALLED ALL ALONG, SNAKESPEARE

Someone calls out to Ted, who leaves JB reciting sonnets with Snakespeare. It’s Mark Attwater, who wants his money in 24 hours or else past transgressions will become public knowledge.

That night Norman watches a news story with Gandolph calling for his departure and makes plans to meet someone the next day. Kelly gets met at the office by Mark who escorts her out for the night but not before making snide remarks at Dr Ray who seems to have a thing for Kelly maybe? I don’t really know, this episode has a love octagon in it.

If I had to choose between people talking about their love lives and a snake quoting Shakespeare, I mean…

Later that night JB is invited to a party at TV reporter Joyce Hacker’s house. Joyce explains she’s passionate about zoology, doubly so as her late husband liked to thinking hunting endangered species was doing the world a favour. Ugh. Mark declares he’d like to offer an unpopular opinion (a white man offering an unpopular opinion? I don’t believe it) but Joyce shoots that down and asks Ray for a quiet word. She wants him to take over the park management and she will take over the park board. Ray tells her he doesn’t want it but he’s flattered and disappears. Joyce is soon joined by Mark and in the 3 seconds before they start making out it is established that she has arranged for Mark to be working for the Earthspeak crew. Downstairs Kelly spots them making out and runs out of the house crying past JB.

(Things I think at weddings)

The next day Bea is showing JB the leopards when Ted pops up looking to impart more Black Mamba wisdom. Jess says she’ll come see him later and he leaves, but not before sulking at Bea about her not going to the movies with him the night before. (Bea went to the party thing with Ray. As friends. Just FYI)

I think I have it straight now. Ted loves Bea. Bea loves Ray. Ray loves Kelly. Kelly is engaged to Mark Atwater. Mark Atwater is making out with Joyce.

Mortals. What can you do?

Kelly runs into Mark who tells her it’s not what she thinks it is. Gee Gaslight was a good movie. Across the park, Norman begs Gandolph into finding someone else to take the fall for the park’s demise and offers 150K to sweeten the pot. Gandolph tells him he’ll think about it and wanders off, past Bea who heard the whole thing. Later, Norman meets mark and offers him money to throw Joyce under the bus and disavow the whole campaign.

I WANT TO HEAR MORE FROM SNAKESPEARE.

That night…

#Bossmode

Mark Atwater comes in looking for Kelly but JB hasn’t seen her all day. Mark assumes Kelly told Jessica about what happened the previous night and Jessica tells him she didn’t need to be told, she was there. Mark gets a phone call and departs but not before telling JB she doesn’t have all the facts.

Cut to Jimmy Russell slinking around in the vet room and bumping into Snakespeare…

Snakespeare’s got nothing but love

Also Mark Atwater is slowing dying and clutching his neck but whatever.

The next day Lieutenant Gabriel Caceras wanders in to take charge of the investigation while a bear cub gets ready for the Grammys.

There are literally too many bear puns for me to make right now.

Caceras takes down JB’s and Jimmy’s statements but it’s case closed, the black mamba did it. Jess finds it a curious set of circumstances that led to Mark being in the same place as a loose black mamba but Carceras won’t buy into it. Ray wanders past and asks where the esteemed Norman Gilford is while this crisis is happening.

Jess and Ray go for a drive and run into Joyce and Gandolph. Gandolph wants to shut the park down but they beg him for more time. Joyce thinks the whole situation with the snake and the shady lady would make wonderful fodder for a book and Jess quite agrees. She shoots off in the golf cart with Ray while Gandolph tells Joyce about Norman’s big fat bribe.

Jessica continues her research into deadly snakes and proves that Snakespeare was not the murderer, obviously. Joyce confronts Norman about the bribe and gives him the option to fess up or flee.

Back at the animal hospital…

I don’t actually know what that animal is

Jess discovers that there is black mamba poison missing from the fridge. Caceras and Bea wander in and announce Ted’s been arrested for the murder after his prints were found at Atwaters’ ransacked house. It turns out Ted was being blackmailed by Mark and after he heard Mark was dead he tried to get the proof back. Jess believes him, and after a eureka moment gets Caceras to find out who owns the vacant land next to the park. Caceras calls her later that night and tells her that it’s owned by the CH foundantion but he doesn’t know more than that.

A sign on the wall gives Jessica another eureka moment and she goes to confront Bea Huffington who confesses to being the source of Jimmy Russell’s info. Russell wasn’t the only recipient of Bea’s info, and JB gets her to call the other person and set up a meeting.

To conclude…

I mean why not.

Joyce’s husband owned the land, Joyce wanted the park’s land, Gandolph was in on it and Atwater tried to blackmail her.

But never mind all that. My chronic fatigue might have come back, but a bunch of lions killed some rhino poachers in South Africa and in the omnishambles that is life on Earth in 2018 let’s just take the wins where we find them.

#SnakespeareLives

 

 

 

S10E21 – Wheel of Death

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Disclaimer: normally I watch the episode once before I do this, but not this time! Will it make more or less sense than usual? Who knows!

 

We’re back in the Cove Fletcherfans and the carnival is in town! Nothing says Scooby Doo murder like a carnival! Especially a carnival in financial difficulty, which apparently this one is. The show manager Joanna Simms begs help from the co-owner Carl Dormer but he’s too busy being a magician to go get the permits.

Meanwhile, Seth is grumping Jessica into hurrying up so they can get to the carnival but Jess has just discovered she’s been burgled. While she’s sad about the loss of her jewellery, she thinks it’s ironic that she comes home from the crime capital of the universe to discover she’s been broken into.

It turns out Cabot Cove is having its own crime wave (again) as Jean O’Neill is down at the Sheriff’s office reporting the theft of her good crystal and her mother’s silver tea set while she was out walking the dog. Mort is taking it all down when Joanna walks into the office to get the permits for the carnival and he nearly passes out. It would appear that they had a Thing twenty years ago. Jean is somewhat miffed the focus has been taken off her good crystal but Deputy Andy is there to save the day and goes to investigate the case of the missing crystal.

Mort offers Joanna a cup of coffee and it is revealed that they were at college together before Joanna ran off with star footballer Don Sims, who was picked up by the LA Rams, blew a knee and was never heard from again. Until right now when he bursts into the office, demands Joanna hurry up, laughs at Mort and suggests he lead them all in the college song.

“Don’t hate me.” Says Joanna as she follows Don out of the office. Fun fact, people who say that almost always deserve hatred.

EVERY EMOTION SIMULTANEOUSLY ON MORT’S FACE. All that’s missing is the dramatic finger bite. You know what I mean.

Over at the carnival, a shady character is keeping an eye on Carl as he gets the receipts from the previous day’s takings at the ticket booth. He goes to follow Carl as he leaves but then makes himself scarce when JB and Seth turn up wanting to discuss the previous day’s takings. Carl shows them but warns it’s not good news. Jess and Seth are surprised, the crowds the previous night indicated that they were rolling in the money but Carl just shrugs and says the crowd might have been there but they weren’t spending. He departs to get ready for his show, and Jess goes to look around while Seth ensconces himself in one of the sideshows and starts drumming up business. The shady character sidles up to a juggler and says he lost Carl. The juggler tells him Carl will be in his trailer. The shady guy tells him to get the books if the juggler is still in.

Back at the ticket office one of the girls goes on break, leaving the other, Lisa, to flirt with Toby the carnival roustabout who departs just as JB sidles up.

Yeah she does

Some dude called Richard cuts JB off to announce that the carnival called him to order more hotdogs, they’d underestimated the supply, and to show his gratitude he wants to buy a hundred bucks worth of tickets. He’ll come back and pick them up when he picks Lisa up to see the magic show (which appears to be news to Lisa). JB is astounded and asks Lisa if she has a copy of the previous day’s takings for her. Lisa tells her Carl said it wasn’t necessary to make a copy but she spilt soda on the first copy and she still has it. Jess reads it over and is not happy with what she sees.

If this was the Mystery Gang obviously JB would be Velma but I think it gets harder after that. Except Grady is Scrappy Doo, obviously.

Mort runs into Joanna again, who asks him if he ever thinks about college, and he tells her not really. She does, and she thinks she really screwed up. Mort thinks everyone makes choices but is then called to a kerfuffle at one of the sideshows where Don Simms is trying to confiscate the prizes from a group of kids because they didn’t knock the bottles off the table, they only knocked them over. Seth wants him arrested for being shady but Mort just tells the kids to take their prizes and play somewhere else. Joanna tells him to close the stand down, his shenanigans aren’t going to play in Cabot Cove. Don thinks she clearly should have married Mort.

Dramarama

Lisa goes on break and finds Toby flexing his muscles on the strength tester. Apparently, he hates his job but is taking a year off between high school and college to save money for school.

He must be from Beverly Hills, everyone who lives there ages really quickly according to television

Unfortunately for Hot Toby, he has set the strength tester up outside Carl’s trailer and the noise drives him to come out and start abusing him. Toby swears he set it up as per his instructions but Carl drags him away, leaving the juggler to sneak into his trailer while Joanna looks on.

Back at House Fletcher Mort is investigating the break-in. There’s been a few of them and they’ve all been well timed. Townsfolk are blaming the carnival but it’s only been in town for two days.

Mort asks JB if she has a torch and a magnifying glass.

(Everyone knows this is a Holmes/Lestrade situation. Seth is Watson with a hangover)

Mort spots some scratches on the kitchen door that weren’t made with a key. He promises to put the word out about the stolen items, to go with the other antiques that have been pinched, and offers JB a lift back to the carnival.

Speaking of which, Joanna confronts the juggler (whose name is apparently Nicky) when she finds him going through the desk drawers. He swears it’s not what it looks like, and is backed up his fiancee/assistant Carmen who bursts in to see if he’s found her engagement ring that very specifically fell off in one of the drawers when she was meeting with Carl. She spots it under the desk and the pair of them leave. Joanna isn’t buying Carmen’s stunt for a minute but Carmen swears she knows nothing.

JB drags Seth to the magic show under great protest – he’d rather just get Mort to arrest Carl for skimming the take but JB doesn’t want to disappoint the people who want to see his show. As Joanna is about to enter the tent Don grabs her and tells her to convince Carl to retire so they can take over. She thinks he should quit drinking, he thinks she should be more supportive. You know, that old chestnut.

As the show starts Carl requires two volunteers from the audience. Joanna drags Richard the supermarket guy up on stage and eventually gets Seth up when Jess convinces the audience to buy another ticket to see Seth do it. The show begins and Carl cheerfully nicks things out of their pockets while the crowd laughs. “Are you giving your girlfriend a sausage necklace?” Carl asks Richard as I spray tea out my nose.

Seth’s audition for the Full Monty did not go according to plan.

After the show, Richard storms out fuming. Lisa bumps into Toby and arranges to meet him after the carnival closes that night. When she arrives, she sees Carl fighting with a shadowy figure who stabs him. Lisa runs away, then Carmen appears and starts screaming as the rides start to come on and Carl’s body takes a cruise in the Whirlwind.

Say it with me. ALL CARNIVALS ARE HAUNTED. Also abandoned theme parks.

Mort gets called to the scene early the next morning and quickly works to stop the carnival from leaving town. Seth tells him Carl was stabbed and then placed in the ride. Joanna pops up to say that Carls’ trailer has been broken into. She didn’t know anything, she just heard the Whirlwind music. Apparently, Don slept through the whole thing, classic Don. Mort thinks it’s suspicious but Joanna swears Don didn’t have a motive (except he did, now Carl’s dead they can take over the carnival. She tells Mort about Nicky breaking into the trailer – Mort asks her why she didn’t mention it sooner but she says Nicky’s a good kid she didn’t want him to get in trouble.

Only if it was between her and him, Mort says. BURN. Nicky gets brought down to the Sheriff’s office but he says he swore on a Gideon bible, he can’t talk about it but he didn’t kill Carl. Oh alright then.

Down at the carnival, Carmen tells JB that she saw Nicky talking to a man in a grey suit but she doesn’t know who or why. She couldn’t tell who the woman was she saw running away but she doesn’t think it was Joanna Simms.

Back at the Sheriff’s office Deputy Andy proudly marches The Man In Grey in to see Mort. They found him down at the Lighthouse Motel, Jessica’s theory about the Gideon bible paid off. The man frowns when Nicky appears and swears he didn’t say a word but is alarmed when he hears of the murder. Mort is about to arrest him for pissing him off when the man suggests they swap identification.

Port Mort’s having a bit of a time.

Over at the carnival Jess runs into Toby who tells her he’s been trying to speak to Lisa all day but she said she’d call the police if he didn’t leave her alone. They were supposed to meet at 11:30 the night before but she didn’t show. JB asks where they were meant to meet and Toby’s face drops as he says the Whirlwind. Jess needs to get into town but Toby doesn’t have a car. They spot Don Simms with his car (and suitcase on the roof) but he just hightails it out of there. Later Mort arrives and arrests Joanna for conspiracy to commit murder. Joanna thinks it’s because she walked out on him all those years earlier.

Mort goes to consult Jessica, who thinks Don pinched the books and fled but didn’t necessarily kill Carl or break into the trailer. Seth brings Lisa around for reasons I didn’t understand until Jessica directs her to the kitchen where Toby’s waiting with cookies and an apology. Naww. You go Hot Toby.

Back at work, Mort confronts Joanna in the cells but she says she didn’t kill Carl and neither did Don. She knew that Carl was embezzling money but she didn’t know who else was involved. She thinks Don ran because he thought Mort would throw him in jail as payback for what happened at college. Geniuses. Mort tells her none of this is to do with that and that if she hadn’t left him he would never have met Adele, the love of his life. Deputy Andy pops up to announce they found Don. They bring him in but all he says is that he stole the books to stop them from arresting Joanna. As they tearfully reunite Mort helpfully reminds them they are still under arrest.

Back at home Jess still doesn’t think the Simms were involved. Seth bellyaching about a hangnail gives her an idea and they depart for the wake of Carl Dormer.

Thanks to a bit of dramatic flair by the carnie crew, the killer is outed.

I called it. In my head.

Richard. Richard, Richard Richard. You shouldn’t have kept your cat burglar tools on you at a magic show where anyone might grab them and work out you’re the local cat burglar and blackmail you.

Holy crap you guys. That’s the end of season 10. There are now officially only 45 episodes left.

Don’t panic.

Later gang.

S10E20 – A Murderous Muse

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It’s just another night on West 64th Street. A busker is busting out some funky clarinet moves while up in the penthouse a girl is busting out some classical on the piano. The jam session is cut short by Tommy Wisseau Byron Tokofsky slamming the lid down and ordering the girl, Leslie Walden back to bed. She is recording in the morning.

PS OMG Leslie Walden is being played by Jenny Lewis ARGH WHAT IS HAPPENING.

A few levels down from the penthouse, JB is just chillin casual-like as depicted by the cardigan casually draped over her shoulders.

Casual perfection, frankly

She is loving the clarinet performance happening outside, but Richie the super tells her that not everyone is so appreciative, and Byron Tokofsky has put in numerous complaints. Jess is trying to get Leslie to perform at a benefit she is organising however it’s all going to come down to whether Byron is in the mood.

The next day Leslie hits the recording studio, while a crowd of people (including JB obvs) watch on. Byron is unhappy because Byron is always unhappy. Specifically, he thinks Leslie fluffed the recording, and her manager, Owen McLaglen has done a lousy job with the promo artwork for the album cover and whatnot. Seriously, I haven’t seen The Room but Byron is basically old man Tommy Wisseau in my head.

Nailed it, probably.

JB pops into the booth to see the head of Leslie’s label, Steven Hoyt, who is ranting and raving about Byron’s crazy control freak ways. Jess quietly points out that it’s a little unusual for the head of the label to also be sound engineering and producing the album. But, if it gets Leslie’s album perfect it will be worth it.

Jess knows what’s up.

Jess goes to try and wrangle a commitment to the museum benefit out of Byron but he’s not having a bar of it. Jess is persistent but is cut off when the clarinet player turns up. “Hello angel,” he says to Leslie. He goes to grab Leslie’s hand but Byron swats his hand away. Leslie announces she will share a cab back to the apartment with JB and rushes out. Byron sticks around to smack talk the man, who turns out to be Leslie’s father Frank. In the booth, Steven eavesdrops furiously.

Back at Casa de Fletcher Jess introduces Leslie to her neighbour Solly Prinze, another musician who is helping JB learn a bit of piano for a book she’s prepping. Solly says he’s shared an elevator with Leslie many times and asks her out to dinner. She says maybe, and bids Jessica goodnight. Jess reconfirms her lesson with Solly the next day.

Up in the penthouse, Byron is making plans with his butler, whose name is Bok and the less that’s said about that the better frankly. Byron orders Leslie to join him in a toast, and casually busts some moves on her – Leslie is turning 18 soon and will no longer be his ward, so we all know what that means. Leslie hightails it to her bedroom, while a woman, Vanessa Cross, moves in on Byron to bust some moves of her own. He tells her she has an apartment and a generous allowance, what else does she want? Meanwhile, Leslie puts in a quick call to Owen looking for support but he can’t get the dollar signs out of his eyes.

Sidenote, I just finished reading Blonde by Joyce Carol Oates and it was amazing and got all my feminist rage riled up. Again. But you know. #notallmen.

There’s a party on, and while Byron stalks the crowd looking for Leslie, Jessica has been bailed up by some dude who wants to mansplain her writing to her.

Me, basically always.

Meanwhile, on his search for Leslie, Byron fires Owen because he’s Byron then tries to get into the credenza to get a program for a little old duck but has no luck. You better believe that’s going to come up again later.

Leslie, it turns out, has gone to see Solly play with his jazz band. After his set, they bond over samosas and their love of music and frankly, it’s adorable. Later that night, Leslie falls asleep listening to Solly’s CD and Byron storms in, yelling at her for embarrassing him in front of his guests. He tells her he’s going to make a woman of her and they will be married in Munich in September.

This guy can’t die soon enough, to be honest.

Frank Walden inexplicably sees the whole thing go down and goes to drink his sorrows away in the neighbourhood bar. Vanessa finds him there and tells him about the marriage plot. She wants to marry Byron, (you need help lady), and she wants to help Frank stop the whole thing.

The next morning Leslie meets with her father, who apologises for the drugs and the alcohol and wants to make things right. Leslie isn’t having a bar of it and tells her father she never wants to see him again.

Jessica is having her lesson with Solly (“C sharp is the same as D flat? There’s something very suspicious about that!”) when there’s a knock at the door – it’s a tearful Leslie looking for some patented JB sympathy. Solly excuses himself, but not before reminding Leslie he owes her dinner. Leslie apologises to JB for the stuff around with the museum benefit, and JB says not to worry – but that’s not why Leslie is there. Leslie explains her father wants her back in his life and she doesn’t know what to do.

Across town, Owen summons Steven to a quick meeting to inform him that another record company has offered more money for Leslie’s contract and Byron is set to sign, despite his agreement with Steven’s label. Steven freaks but Owen says not to worry, he has a good relationship with Leslie, he’ll straighten it out. He somehow forgets to mention that Byron fired him the previous night.

Later that night, Jessica goes to see Byron to try and get Leslie at the benefit, and also to deliver a package that was left for him downstairs, some sheet music as it turns out. Byron says the benefit isn’t happening, and to butt out of his business. As Jessica leaves, she hears Byron start to play the music and winces as he hits a bung note.

And by a bung note I mean he dead now. And there was such mourning.

The next day JB gives a statement to Lieutenant DiMartini, but it doesn’t help. Byron’s been shot but they don’t know more than that. DiMartini has been told that Leslie’s father gave her a bunch of compositions before he left, which Byron then appropriated but JB doesn’t know anything about that. She does know that Leslie’s missing and messed up. Before she leaves, JB gives Vanessa her condolences. Downstairs Solly finds Leslie slumped in the hallway weeping, and brings her inside.

That night Owen and Steven meet. Neither of them has heard from Leslie and they are starting to grow suspicious of each other. Steven thinks it’s a tad suspicious that Owen was out of a job and is suddenly running things, and thinks it’s all suss. Owen says he’s sending the papers over tomorrow, sign or don’t sign.

Jess arrives home from the supermarket, flicks on the TV and sees DiMartini announcing that Frank Walden has been arrested for Byron’s murder. Solly appears at her door, confesses that Leslie has been with him most of the day but is now missing. Jess tells him to go home and she’ll let him know if she hears anything…then literally hears piano music coming from the penthouse. Leslie tells Jess that she doesn’t remember much, she just rode the subway for a bit and then walked. She’s surprised her father did it, but she’s not interested in hearing from anyone else. Jess promises she will take Leslie to see her father in the morning.

While Leslie and Frank have a tearful reunion, JB discusses the case with DiMartini. DiMartini is less than convinced about Frank’s guilt, but he can’t see another suspect. Jessica thinks it’s ridiculous that Frank’s fingerprints were all over the rooftop opposite the penthouse but not on the gun. She’s starting to wonder about that mysterious sheet music that Byron received and asks DiMartini for a copy.

Back at House Fletcher, JB, Leslie and Solly play the sheet music and are confused when there’s a bung note in it.

Wait he was shot by a wineglass?

Jessica has an epiphany, throws Solly and Leslie out, and calls DiMartini.

It’s Fletchertime

Anyway, long story short…

Because sure

But also

Because of course.

These two bright sparks teamed up to eliminate a common enemy, i.e Byron (it turns out Vanessa was set to inherit a whole bunch). So Steven built a magical contraption into the credenza that opened the door and fired a gun whenever the bung note was played.

For those who are interested, scroll down to see a cat ranking of this episode (I so nearly got through it while she was asleep honestly it’s like having a baby in the apartment)

Later gang!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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