Fletcherfans! Remember these guys?
Last time we saw Vicky and Kernickie they were in LA being stiffed by Martin Landau. Now they’re in New York, where Kernickie is a struggling actor and Vicky is working for a high-falutin’ advertising agency with Charles Winchester from MASH that looks nothing like Mad Men and is clearly a front for a meth lab. And I’m not just saying that because I’ve watched 3.5 seasons of Breaking Bad in two weeks.
Vicky is a teeny bit stressed out. Her boss Larry Kincaid is trying to pimp her out to Grover Bart (proprietor of Corned Beef Castle and previously seen as a foreman here), whose signature he is eager to get. He insists that Vicky blow off her lunch with her aunt and Howard. Howard is not terribly impressed with this news, but JB doesn’t mind a bit. Unfortunately it gets worse over lunch, and the sleazy baron of the corned beef empire gets all Indecent Proposal-ish.
Back at the office Larry K is being harassed by his brother Myron who is concerned about the lack of money, and
Charles Winchester Aubrey Thornton who is concerned about the fact that he wasn’t invited to the Corned Beef Castles presentation. After he tells Vicky that she’s having dinner with Grover Bart and he’d better come in the next morning with a big smile on his face or else, she quits. GO VICKY!
Kincaid’s mood improves with the arrival of his 4 o’clock appointment, a rival ad exceutive.
That’s some 80s power dressing right there…
Of course, Christine Clifford isn’t just there to demonstrate the power of a pastel suit – she’s on a mission to steal the Corned Beef Castle account away from the Kincaids and hand it to her boss, in exchange for All The Things. She cleverly “forgets her purse” and returns to retrieve it and a folder of potential pitches that Vicky has put together for the campaign.
After returning home to find a load of bills and an answering machine message with another audition rejection for Kernickie, Vicky decides to go back to the office to suck up to Kincaid, so that she might get her job back. But alas, when she walks in to the office, Larry K is suffering a terminal case of being dead, bashed to death with his own award.
Lieutenant Spoletti is called to the scene, takes one look at the murder weapon, and says “For excellence in the field of advertising: Larry Kincaid. Well, like they say – this one had his name on it.”
We won’t get fooled again! Won’t get fooled again! (Sorry)
Spoletti proceeds to interrogate Vicky but is soon interrupted by Kernickie 9who is concerned for his wife) and JB (who has just spotted a corned beef sandwich that’s been left unsupervised on Kincaid’s desk)
*not pictured: sandwich
JB subtly hints to Spoletti that the presence of the corned beef sandwich might establish time of death. They ask the security guard (previously seen as the Coach in this episode) for a list of people who visited the office after hours, and apart from a visit from Grover Bart and an interior designer named Mary Jo, there is no record of anyone coming to the building, let alone delivering a sandwich.
MYSTERIOUS SANDWICH IS MYSTERIOUS.
The next morning Vicky is clearing out her things when she gets a visit from Aubrey and Myron. They tell her they looked over her ideas for the Corned Beef Castle account and they want her to stay. Yay Vicky! She goes to celebrate her good fortune with JB, but is soon interrupted by Christine Clifford with a job offer and Spoletti with an arrest warrant.
Is anyone else feeling a bit deja vu-y?
Down at the precinct JB and Spoletti have a raging argument (largely about sandwiches), and Spoletti gives her 24 hours to prove her point that the time of death was much earlier than he thinks. Not wasting time, she goes straight to the Kincaid office to ask Myron and Aubrey about the interior designer but they know nothing about it, saying that the office had only been redecorated a year before, JB also asks about the sercurity guard, who had apparently been fired. Aubrey says that was him, that since he let the boss get killed he probably needed to be replaced. That’s logic I guess.
After a brief stop at a Corned Beef Castle opening to ask Grover Bart about his after hours visit to Larry Kincaid (he knew nothing, especially about any proposals of the indecent variety), JB then goes to see the newly unemployed security guard to ask about the interior designer. He tells her that that he didn’t think that she was an employee, she was tall, blonde, and kinda liked him.
JB confirms that the mystery interior designer is in fact Mary Clifford, and to celebrate goes home for lunch where Kernickie is full of beans – he has an audition for a TV commercial…organised by Mary Clifford. HOW CONVENIENT. JB tags along, smelling a pastel wearing rat, and she’s right – Kernickie only gets to be the face of Slumberland Funeral Homes (!?!?) when Vicky joins the agency and brings the Corned Beef Castles account with her. BASTARDS.
Jess pipes up, and asks Christine about her second visit to Larry Kincaid, disguised as an interior decorator. She tries to bluff her way out of it but admits to stealing the file earlier in the day and replacing it before Larry K knew it was missing. She swears up and down that Larry was already dead when she returned the file. On JB’s advice she goes to the police station and tells Spoletti the same information. Spoletti is disinclined to believe her.
Spoletti: Why is it I always figure gorgeous blondes are lying to me?
JB: Adolescent trauma, lieutenant.
Christine Clifford’s boss, Leland Biddle, arrives to check on his employee. He tells JB and Spoletti that they are no longer interested in the Corned Beef Castle account after he learned that the Barts were filing for bankruptcy. JB asks him if he knew about that before Kincaid was killed and he gets uppity, but he has an alibi – he was dining with Aubrey the night of the murder, although conveniently at the restaurant at the foot of the Kincaid office building but he swears that he never left the restaurant.
Jess goes home to tell Vicky and Kernickie about it, but they’re a little busy right now.
Ugh, JB I know how you feel…
JB decides against the floor show, and goes hunting for the origin of the Mysterious Corned Beef Sandwich Of Mystery. She finally tracks it down to a deli near the Kincaid offfice, but the owner tells her that the order was cancelled the night of the murder.
Spoletti orders the security guard in for questioning, but he can’t figure it out either. JB asks him what the delivery man was wearing – gloves, a beanie, a moustache, and sunglasses, according to the guard. JB correctly points out that it would be weird for a delivery man to be wearing sunglasses at night.
But it wouldn’t be weird, if he was trying to disguise himself so that the security guard wouldn’t recognise him .
Not for nothing, but that’s two for two MASH actors that have gone on to kill people on Murder, She Wrote. Worth keeping an eye on *ominous music*
Poor Charles. All he and his bowtie wanted to do was work in advertising, but since Kincaid was such a dick he just couldn’t get ahead, So, through the cunning use of disguises
And he would’ve gotten away with it, if it hadn’t been for the Mysterious Sandwich of Mystery – and JB Fletcher, of course. But the sandwich helped. God I’m so hungry now.
Can’t talk, eating.
ETA: Thanks to Kell for pointing out that it’s CHARLES Winchester, not Frank. The moral here kids, is don’t write things when all you can think about is the buttermilk pancakes you’re going to eat when you’ve finished.
For the record, they were tasty as and I regret nothing. (Thanks Kell!)