I tell you what gang, I’m pretty excited about this episode. Hold on to your bicycles guys!

After the local congressman for Cabot Cove (and the rest of Maine too, probably) turns up dead with a heart attack, the politicians are flummoxed. Who can they get to be acting congresswoman until the vote is sorted out in six weeks time?

When there’s someone dead in your neighbourhood, who ya gonna call?

Mrs Fletcher Goes to Washington

And with a blast of patriotic pipe music, our JB is off to Washington, so beginning possibly the greatest television mash-up I’ve ever invented…

YOU’RE WELCOME.

JB is met at the station by CJ Joe-the-media-advisor, who is sassy (like CJ!) and likes to wear driving gloves (like CJ, probably). At first Joe treats his new boss with epic amounts of condescension, but Our Heroine puts him firmly back in his place. He introduces her to Congressman Dan Keppner, a friend of her predecessor, as well as her assistant Donna Dianna, who promptly tries to resign but Jess isn’t having a bar of it.

Before she can even sit down Gary Parmell, a lobbyist, waltzes into the room with a big bouquet of roses to welcome her to the neighbourhood/get her vote/get in her pants. Dianna very gently gets Jess out of an awkward situation, and Jess decides she’s going to need a “fast education,” which I’m guessing is code for a double Jameson’s on the rocks, but is actually a nice cup of tea.

Jess checks into her hotel and settles into bed with her “fast education” (not a euphemism, stop sniggering), but is interrupted by a phone call from Congressman Keppner. He wants to meet her to talk about his pal Wendell’s heart attack, but Jess is plumb tuckered out, and begs off until the morning. He hangs up and runs into a girl named Marta, who tells him she was also there the night Wendell had his heart attack, and that she helped him move the body.

The plot! It is thick!

After a good night’s rest, Jess is up and ready to filibuster the hell out of something. (I’ll be honest, I’m not entirely sure what a filibuster is, but I like to say it, and I’m sure it’s possible to filibuster the hell out of something if you properly commit, and anyway…) As she leaves the hotel, a mysterious stranger follows her. SUSPICIOUS…but no, it turns out he’s just the local fuzz.

The role of Det. Lt. Avery Mendelsohn will be played by Toby Ziegler, who will be played by Herschel Bernardi

Sidenote: here’s a completely irrelevant quote from Herschel:

There are five stages to an actor’s career: who is Herschel Bernardi? get me Herschel Bernardi; get me a Herschel Bernardi type; get me a young Herschel Bernardi; and who is Herschel Bernardi?

But I digress. The Det-Lieu  wants JB’s help – it turns out that the death of the former congressman for Cabot Cove (and the rest of Maine, probably) wasn’t as straight forward as they all thought. The autopsy shows that someone moved the body, and since his stomach hurts it means that “there’s a fox loose in the china shop” (Life Lesson #24, brought to you by Confucius).

Jess is naturally taken aback by this news…

I know how she feels…

…and while she (and we all) ponder exactly who let the fox into the china shop in the first place, her new friend Congressmne Keppner has turned up passed out in the gutter and being felt up by a random hobo. Ahh, Victoria Park station, what memories we’ve had…anyway, while the congressman attempts to retrieve his wallet from the aforementioned hobo, he stumbles into a police car. Which is convenient for them, because he’s wanted for questioning for the murder of Marta Craig.

Unaware of this juicy new development, JB is kicking it in her office, reading up on a proposed cannery that developers want to build about a mile from Cabot Cove. (I’m pretty sure all of Maine is a mile from Cabot Cove, but that’s neither here nor there). Jess is all over that, but she has more pressing issues, like her predecessor getting into bed dead. She asks Donna Diana what her thoughts are, and Diana reveals the late Wendell had been invited to a party with Gary Parmell, who JB refers to as the “unctuous gentlemen with the roses”. There’s no time to dwell on that though, JB is late to a committee meeting, and after being briefly waylaid by another lobbyist named THOR DANZIGER (NOT MAKING THIS UP), JB settles in for some hardcore governing.

On a break from all that law making and speechifying, (or as I like to call it, half-time), Jess goes back to her office. CJ Joe is trying to talk Jess into having lunch with Kaye Sheppard, the local gossip columnist, which Jess doesn’t want a bar of. In her office, Avery is troubled. Keppner is under arrest, but his stomach hurts and to make matters worse his feet do to, and that means that something isn’t kosher. At the police station Keppner reveals all – that Wendell had a heart attack and that they panicked and moved the body. Marta took photos in order to blackmail him but he didn’t kill her Mrs Fletcher you’ve got to believe me! etc etc.

Avery takes her down to the morgue to look at the body.

And with that, the congressman was proven innocent. Any questions?

Avery is well pleased with this, understandably, and tells Jess she should have been a cop.

“I am a cop,” she replies. “When I’m at the typewriter.”

As I said, LIKE A BOSS. Back at the Jess Wing, JB is trying to get the skinny on the congressmen, Marta Craig, Gary Parmell, and Ray Dixon, the boss of the company who wants in on Cabot Cove. She sends CJ Joe out for information. Meanwhile, Dianna has gone home to see her boyfriend THOR DANZINGER. To be honest, I’m not sure that has anything to do with anything, but I just wanted to say his name again. It turns out he was being blackmailed by Marta too and has been helpfully sent the photos to prove it, along with a note ordering him to stay away from Mrs Fletcher.

Unlikely. The lady in question has gone off to have lunch with Kaye Sheppard after all.

Face it, that’s a Bond villan right there… the lady in the hat could be too, I guess.

The divine Ms K has information about Marta Craig, but she ain’t just giving it up for nobody, not even JB Fletcher. After a bit of wheeling and dealing, she comes clean – she saw Marta coming out of the Watergate building, looking upset and being chased by Ray Dixon. JB has a vague whiff of a scent, and she’s hot on it.

The scent takes her to Donna Diana’s home, where she and THOR DANZIGER come clean on their relationship, as well as their former friendship with Marta. Joe the press agent tells her all the goss he can garner on Marta. The scent is now a full-blown olfactory tirade. JB has worked out the killer’s identity, and now it’s all she can do to trap him and vote on the cannery bill at the same time.

First thing’s first. JB rocks the vote like a boss. Words can’t do her speech justice, so here’s a video recreation.

Oh remember when Mel Gibson wasn’t an anti-Semitic lunatic? I’d forgotten too. Anyway, one victory down, one to go. Jess goes to check on the trap she laid for Marta’s killer and happily, the killer took the bait.

Life Lesson #25 – Never trust a man who wears driving gloves.

To celebrate, Avery invites JB out for lox and cream cheese, something Jess has barely heard of but is intrigued by, natch.

And so another chapter closes on Murder, She Blogged. See you next week, Fletcherfans!

 

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