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S04E02 – When Thieves Fall Out

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There’s something fishy going on in the Cove this week Fletcherfans. Coach Kevin Cauldwell is finally retiring as coach of the Cabot Cove High football team, and so to celebrate Our Heroine is throwing him a retirement party, and to celebrate that one time Cabot Cove High won the thing in 1966 (I’m not entirely sure what. As I’ve mentioned before, there’s Aussie Rules football and Sports That Aren’t Aussie Rules football. This is most definitely in the latter category).

Before I continue, I’d just like to subtly point out something that caught my attention:

(Not pictured: Dack Rambo)

(Not pictured: Dack Rambo)

Before JB can get to Coach’s retirement party there’s a knock at her door. A man named Andrew Durbin, has come to collect the keys to JB’s pal Lila’s house which he’s renting for a few weeks. Before he drops her at the party he asks her where the sheriff’s office is, he has some paperwork to give him. MYSTERIOUS.

Meanwhile, all is not well with the Great and Glorious Team of ’66.  Arnie Wakeman is in a wheelchair after a car accident, Dan Pulling is drunk all the time and has just been fired from the caryard fellow team member Bill Hampton (aka Dack Rambo) owns,  and Judge Perry Sillman has just had Amos Tupper and Andrew Durbin in his office with some paperwork. MYSTERIOUS PAPERWORK OF DEATH, probably.

Oh no, just parole papers. At the coach’s party Judge Sillman tells JB that it turns out that Andrew Durbin has just been released from prison after serving 20 years for murder. Shady. Coach isn’t really up for reliving past glories and the party dies down pretty quickly. As they leave, Bill Hampton finds a cutout of a newspaper article from the Cabot Cove Gazette, a story about a businessman that died and the hitchhiker accused of his murder. His wife asks him why he looks so upset and he says it’s nothing, just someone’s idea of a practical joke. He gets in the car and drives off, but not before noticing the red corvette parked across the street.

SUBTLE PLOT POINTS ARE SUBTLE.

That night, Bill and his wife are woken by a phone call and a jack-in-the-box.

Dack Rambo is cool in a crisis.

Dack Rambo is cool in a crisis.

As the newspaper cuttings rain down around them, the red corvette drives past at a crawl. Bill’s wife Alison wants to call Amos but Bill says no, he’ll handle it himself.

The next morning Alison takes things into her own hands and goes to see JB for guidance. She tells JB the whole story, including the subject of the newspaper articles – businessman dead, hundreds of bearer bonds missing. She begs JB to talk to Bill and naturally she agrees, but she wants to do some research first.

That night, when Bill is driving home from the car lot, he is run off the road by – SURPRISE! A red corvette with one headlight! The next morning, Alison finds JB coming out of the offices of the Cabot Cove Gazette and tells her that she heard Bill tell someone he was killed by a red corvette, and now he’s carrying a gun. Who does he think he is, Rambo? Oh wait…

When JB goes to see Bill at the showroom he’s a bit flustered. Andrew Durbin has been in complaining of car trouble – his little red corvette only has one headlight working. He tells Bill the story about he bought the car from a little old woman whose husband was killed twenty years ago. OKAY, WE GET IT, DURBIN IS THE HITCHHIKER, JESUS. Bill tells Andrew that he will take a look at his car at nine o’clock that night. JB asks him what the connection is between him and Durbin, and Bill tells her to leave. After she’s gone, Bill calls someone and tells them that Durbin has been around, and to meet him at the caryard before 9 o’clock so they can end it, gun style.

JB and Amos confront Durbin, who freely admits to being the hitchhiker who was in the car with the businessman the night he died, and was later convicted of his murder. He tells them his version of events – that a car ran them off the road, turned around to come back towards them, he went to get help but couldn’t find any and when he returned to the car the business man was dead and the police were pulling up. JB asks him how Bill Hampton figures into all of this and Durbin tells her that while he was in prison he subscribed to the paper to work out who he saw that night – the passenger, not the driver, was Bill Hampton, wearing a white dinner jacket as it was prom night. JB correctly guesses that Durbin still hasn’t found out who the driver was, which is why he is messing with Bill, in order to smoke the mystery man out.

Amos has had enough of this, and tells Durbin to leave town before he’s arrested. Durbin correctly points out he hasn’t done anything yet, he’s just out for justice.

Amos is breaking bad

Amos is breaking bad

That night, at the scheduled meeting time, Bill Hampton is greeted by his co-conspirator and the click of a gun safety. The next morning, Bill turns up dead, an apparent suicide to everyone except JB as the bullet wound was on Bill’s right side and Bill was lefthanded. JB points out that a stranger might not have known Bill was left handed…

Cut to Durbin being asked for an alibi, and OH THE SURPRISES, he has an airtight one. JB asks him if he will be leaving town now but he’s got unfinished business with the driver of the car. JB then goes to see the judge and his wife, who are consoling Alison and are equally convinced Bill didn’t kill himself. Jess tells them her murder theory and asks them if they remember anything about the night of the prom and they all agree that they went to a diner after prom and had a wonderful time. LIARS!

Down on the docks Coach Cauldwell spots Andrew Durbin and punches him in the face. Jess takes him back to her place to calm down and asks him what he remembers about prom – it turns out he left early for the same reason JB did, the flu. Coach is convinced that none of his boys could be killers, but Jess remembers one of the boys having the nickname Animal. That was Dan, the raging alcoholic who doesn’t have two cents to rub together, so an unlikely holder of stolen bearer bonds. JB then considers Arnie, suing Bill for selling him a dodgy car that landed him in a wheelchair, who became unexpectedly wealthy after high school.

JB pays Arnie a visit, who is outraged when Jess asks him where he got his money from after highschool. He throws her out of the house, even after she helpfully brought in a special delivery letter from his insurance agency.

I've used Stayin Alive lyrics three times in this blog now and I'm still not sorry.

I’ve used Stayin Alive lyrics three times in this blog now and I’m still not sorry.

Eagle-eyed JB spotted scuff marks on the newly polished floorboards (that’s convenient) and so set a cunning trap using her phone bill as bait. Busted, JB escorts Arnie to Amos’s office, where he admits to setting up the dodgy insurance scam because he’d run out of money, but the money he had after high school was an inheritance. JB asks him about the prom and Arnie tells them that Bill was blind drunk that night, and that Alison abandoned him on the dance floor part way through the night. She left at about eleven o’clock, despite Bill trying to get her to stay. Amos gets a phone call placing Dan the Drunk in a drunk tank a couple of towns over, ruling him out as a suspect.

Jess confronts Perry, his wife and Alison about their prom night lie, and Alison comes clean. Bill was trying to get her to go to a hotel with him but she refused. She left early, but Bill went back to the prom, saying he had a trophy to collect. And therein lies the clincher for JB. Because the person he collected the trophy from was supposed to already have left.

This has taken a turn for the depressing

This has taken a turn for the depressing

Coach lied about leaving the prom to cover up the truth – he was driving a very drunk Bill home, and while Bill was trying to get Coach to take him to the diner where his friends were the car began to swerve all over the road and they hit the corvette. When he saw the bearer bonds on the backseat of the car he snapped, killed the driver and took half the bonds, giving the other half to Bill. That way he could have the football camp he always wanted, but it never got off the ground.

Well. That was…miserable. Better luck next time Fletcherfans!

Until then.

See you next week gang!

See you next week gang!

S04E01 – A Fashionable Way to Die

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Welcome to season 4 Fletcherfans! JB is kicking off this season with a roadtrip to Paris to visit her old friend Eva who is about to launch her fashion line. Naturally all is not well in the city of love. Eva’s business partner Maxim has issued her an ultimatum – either she signs over 50% of the business to him, or he won’t give her an extension on her loan, or give her the money to pay for the star of the show Lu Watters. Also, be a dear and put his mistress’s daughter in the show?

But never mind all that.

She's got the moves like Jagger, probably.

She’s got the moves like Jagger, probably.

Eva takes JB to the rehearsal, where she meets the star of the show Lu Watters, who seems far too nice to be a supermodel. Maxim also pops his head in, with his mistress Valerie. He begs her to leave as his wife is coming in from the country for the show, but she just laughs. She wishes her daughter Kim good luck for the show, and asks her to keep an eye on Maxim with Eva, because apparently it’s fine for Maxim to cheat on his wife with her, but damned if he’s going to cheat on her with someone else.

That night JB is seated next to Maxim’s wife Claudia. Maxim tells them he will watch the show from backstage, but is called away by a telephone call just as the montage begins. The show goes off almost flawlessly, except for one minor hiccup when Lu appears in the wrong dress – blue sequins instead of white sequins, for those playing along at home.

Backstage after the show, with champagne corks flying everywhere, JB congratulates Eva but Eva is devastated. She tells JB about the partnership agreement, but JB scoffs saying any good lawyer could poke holes in that. They go up to his hotel room to confront him but find him with two more bullet holes in his chest than is generally considered to be healthy. Excuse me while I don’t feel bad.

The French 5-0 roll up in the form of Inspector Clousseau Panassic who takes a break from fangirling over JB to establish that Maxim went up to his room at 9:30 and was shot at 9:50, according to a maid who saw a woman wearing a big hat and a grey checked white jacket run down the hall shortly after. This sets off an alarm bell in J’s head. Clousseau Panassic also finds two plane tickets to the Italian Riviera departing next week, and I’m not entirely sure but I think he just asked JB if she’d like to go there with him.

Let's face it, Harry McGraw isn't taking JB on any international trips. More like IHOP, AMIRITE?

Let’s face it, Harry McGraw isn’t taking JB to Italy. Little Italy, maybe.

One of Clousseau Panassic’s minions appears with something he found in Maxim’s jacket pocket.  Clousseau Panassic is horrified and agrees that it is not for sensitive lady’s eyes. So, porn. Clousseau Panassic interviews the models from the show who all swear that they saw Eva backstage for the whole show, and that she couldn’t possibly have killed Maxim.

That night, while trying to get Eva on the phone, JB spots Claudia Soury go back in to the room where her husband died to collect her stole. Before she leaves she bends down and picks something up off the floor, out of sight of the policeman escorting her, and puts it in her pocket. Jess goes to confront her about it and Claudia tells her that she picked it up thinking that it belonged to Maxim’s mistress Valerie. She wanted to protect her daughters from scandal. JB asks her about the plane tickets to Italy but she knows nothing about it, saying that the other ticket was clearly meant for Valerie. JB looks at the coat buton and recognises the white with grey check that the maid spoke of earlier. The coat belonged to Eva.

The next morning JB pays a call on Valerie, who is packing up her room at the nightclub where she sang. Her engagement there is over, but Maxim had managed to book her to sing at a fancy hotel that Saturday. Inspector Clousseau Panassic is there asking where she was at the time of the murder, and she tells him she was backstage resting between performances. Another nightclub worker, Albert, says that’s not right – her show started late and she was on stage til just after 10pm. Dodged a bullet there sweetheart.  Clousseau Panassic’s minion appears with good news and bad news: the good news is they found the murder weapon. The bad news is that another hotel maid has come forward saying that she heard a gunshot a bit after 10pm.

At Eva’s store, Eva is bouncing off the walls, helping clients and swearing to write Lu Watters her cheque, as it turns out Lu is a bit strapped for cash just at the moment. JB comes in and tells Eva she needs a word, immediately and not at six o’clock at Harry’s American Bar. She tells her about the maid seeing a woman wearing Eva’s jacket leaving Maxim’s floor, and Claudia finding the button in her room. Inspector Clousseau Panassic appears with said button, just as Eva realises her jacket is in fact missing a button.

Back at the hotel JB spots the maid who saw Eva’s jacket, and asks her about the other maid who heard a shot after ten o’clock. Fortunately the other maid is with her and tells her that she knows what she heard but that the police aren’t interested, and more to the point, who stole the two towels from Maxim’s room?

The next morning JB  goes to Eva’s store to ponder the Great Dress Mixup of Two Nights Ago with Eva’s assistant Peter. JB wonders if it was possible for Lu to go up to Maxim’s room, shoot him, come back down and change dresses in ten minutes. Peter says it’s certainly possible but why?

JB goes to share her theory with Inspector Clousseau Panassic who is fascinated, and has decided she is Watson to his Sherlock Holmes.

For those who wondered if I could work Benedict Cumberbatch into an epsiode of Murder She Wrote, WONDER NO MORE. #IAmHopeless

For those who wondered if I could work Benedict Cumberbatch into an epsiode of Murder She Wrote, WONDER NO MORE. #IAmHopeless 

Inspector Clousseau Panassic is surprisingly fine with throwing away his original plan and investigating Lu Watters, throwing his hands up in the air and saying “Come Watson! The game is afoot!”

(Caption unavailable: the owner of this blog has fallen down a Benedict Cumberbatch YouTube rabbit hole)

(Caption unavailable: the owner of this blog has fallen down a Benedict Cumberbatch YouTube rabbit hole)

The Inspector and JB confront Lu, who breaks down and admits that it was her in the dirty photographs. Maxim was blackmailing her, and so to put an end to it, she shot him.

Blah blah, Remember that time Benedict Cumberbatch was on Sesame Street? Honestly, I would pay to listen to him read the phone book.

Remember that time Benedict Cumberbatch was on Sesame Street? Honestly, I would pay to listen to him read the phone book.

Lu thinks she would have gotten away with it if she hadn’t panicked when she realised that Maxim’s wife was in the bathroom.

But hold on – Claudia was in the audience with JB. Jess asks her how she knew someone else was there and Lu tells her she saw a purse. “Was it red?” Asks JB. It was indeed.

Inspector Clousseau Panassic cares not for purses or colours. He orders Lu be placed under arrest and sidles up to JB looking for praise.

“You’ve done it again, Inspector.” Says JB.

g2

 

“I think you have once again arrested the wrong woman.”

Benedict Cumberbatch wouldn't have screwed this up.

Benedict Cumberbatch wouldn’t have screwed this up.

Because, you see, there is the small matter of the plane tickets to Italy. He wasn’t taking his wife, and he wasn’t taking his mistress since she was singing at a fancy hotel in Paris. So who was he taking?

Who indeed. Remember when I said Valerie was fine with Maxim cheating on his wife, but not with her? It turns out it wasn’t Eva she should have been worrying about. It turns out Maxim was shagging her daughter. And you better believe that had consequences…

Yeah, not surprised either, I'm getting better at this.

Yeah, not surprised either, I’m getting better at this. Although I didn’t pick the daughter bit.

So, when Lu bolted after shooting Maxim she didn’t realise she had only wounded him. Maxim called Valerie to come and help him, but when she arrived and saw the purse her daughter was supposed to be modelling in the show she put two and two together and went bang.

And there you have it. We conclude this week’s episode with Inspector Clousseau Panassic listing his virtues as a gentleman – then advising JB she owes him 100 francs for the bill.

Later Fletcherfans!

Later Fletcherfans!

 

We interrupt this program to bring you an important annoucement…

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By the power vested in me, by me, I declare the first ever Murder She Blogged Twitterthon, aka Murder She Tweeted Part The First will take place on Sunday, March 9 at 12pm.

If you are anywhere other than Victoria, New South Wales or Tasmania you will need to adjust your schedule accordingly. If I know time zones (and I don’t), that should be around 7pm on the east coast of America? Maybe?

Anyway, that will give you enough time to hunt down a copy of The Celtic Riddle , the most recent Murder She Wrote movie, which I’ve chosen because it will be almost St Patricks Day which is almost my favourite non-public holiday behind Eurovision weekend and you bet your arse when I become supreme dictator of the multiverse that’s going to be a long weekend.

Sorry, I digress.

Put it in your calendar Fletcherfans, this is going to be fun!

See you next week!

S03E22 – Murder, She Spoke

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This week JB is somewhere in Tennessee, recording one of her stories to tape for a series of recorded books for the blind being put together by Greg Dalton, recently blinded in an accident, and his wife Nancy. In the studio next door, Stony Carmichael is recording with his band under the watchful eye of studio boss Randy Withworth and sound engineer Al Parker.

Randy isn’t having the best time of it. Stoney Carmichael is getting all up in his business when he discovers bootleg copies of his comeback album are being sold on the street, Randy’s wife is all uppity because she thinks he’s after her money, but he is finally buying out his co-owner Carl Angelin, and he’s just cancelled the run of books on tape, much to the annoyance of Greg and Nancy.

That was terrifyingly factual. I apologise. But all this happened. And then the lights went out. And when they came back up, Randy was face down on his desk, bleeding out (but not dead yet) after being stabbed. Lieutenant Faraday arrives on the scene and quickly establishes his investigative methods by telling Nancy Dalton not to worry her pretty little head about it, and telling JB “like they say in those bus commercials – why don’t you sit back, relax, and leave the driving to us?”

Target acquired.

Target acquired.

JB tries to tell the lieutenant about a clue, but he is more interested marvelling what a good hobby writing is for a woman. “You can cook up some supper, chat on the phone and then pop over to the old typewriter now and then for a few minutes.”

“Yes, when I’m not too busy beating the laundry against the rocks in the river.” JB says.

THIS GUY

THIS GUY

Lieutenant Farady tries the compliment insult method used by douchebags in bars the world over to this day. “I bet your books are just charming. But then, of course real murder is anything but charming. And solving it requires patience, strength…”

“Ah! Man’s work!” Says JB

Greg Dalton finally gets a word in and tells Lieutenant Faraday that he heard something that JB thinks could be important, if he’s interested.

“Well of course, sometimes ladies have real good hunches.” Says Lieutenant Faraday.

JB SMASH

JB SMASH

Greg tells the lieutenant he was getting water from the fountain when he heard someone run by him and something drop. Lieutenant Faraday is surprised to learn that Greg is blind. JB spots a dropped bottle of expensive nail polish on the floor and brings it to the lieutenant’s notice. He tells her he saw it too, and mutters “leave it to a woman to find nail polish.”

Me too JB. Me too.

Me too JB. Me too.

The lieutenant gets a phone call and tells them all that Randy was dead on arrival at the hospital. A minion tells him that they’ve found the murder weapon, shoved behind a vending machine just as Greg heard it.

The next morning, JB and Greg defend Sparta against the Persian invasion.

You can't tell from this angle, but Greg is also Walter Peck from Ghostbusters.

You can’t tell from this angle, but Greg is also Walter Peck from Ghostbusters.

Inside Greg gets a phone call from Carl, co-owner of Red River Recording Studios, cancelling the Mystery Books on Tape deal effective immediately. JB wonders at whether he has the power to do so, so they go round to his house for tea and biscuits. He tells them he’s in the process of acquiring the business, but JB saw a cheque and a contract on Randy’s desk the previous night. Carl tells them a lots changed since then.

Waiting for them when they arrive home is Lieutenant Faraday with a warrant. Nancy excuses herself to make coffee, but when JB goes to give her a hand she finds Nancy hiding her knives in the dryer. It turns out she recognised the murder weapon as being her missing knife, stolen after a work barbecue at their house a few days earlier, and was hiding the others to stop someone setting up Greg. JB tells her that the knife will also clear Greg and urges her to come clean.

Unfortunately JB forgot who she was dealing with. The fact that the knife belonged to Greg, plus his witness to the fight he had in the restaurant with Randy over the Books for the Blind series, plus the fact that Randy was the person who caused Greg to go blind equals a pretty solid case for Faraday. After all, he says, who more capable of operating in the dark than a blind man?

I think we've all wondered this at some point or another.

I think we’ve all wondered this at some point or another.

With Greg being held for questions and Nancy about to lose it, JB decides to take matters into her own hands. She tries to talk to Lieutenant Faraday, who has just requested that the studio be unsealed now that he has all his evidence, but he tells her to not be an irrational outsider, and that he didn’t want to see her again unless she was with a man arranging Greg’s bail.

“Lieutenant Faraday, believe it or not there are women who can arrange bail. And besides that, you’re the one behaving irrationally by failing to pursue all the leads in this case.”

JESS OUT.

FLETCHER OUT.

With the scene of the crime reopened, JB heads back to the studio to hunt for clues. Stony Carmichael turns up with his niece Sally Ann in his car, and sound engineer Al Parker roars up on his motorbike (without a helmet tsk tsk) to resume recording Stony’s new album. (Sidenote: the actor playing Stony sang Devil Went Down to Georgia.) (Side side note: I want a nickname like Stony).

JB asks Al if he heard anything while he was on the phone to Randy at the time he was stabbed, but he can’t think of anything and is eager to get back to work. JB’s next target is Earl, the sound engineer working on her Books for the Blind recording, whom she saw arguing with Randy that night. He tells her the power was always going off and on during recording, but it came on of its own volition. He also tells her that Randy accused him of selling bootlegged copies of Stony’s tapes which he took exception to.

Jess takes a look inside Randy’s office but is interrupted by Carl coming in with Randy’s wife Margaret, trying to reinstate the original deal her husband had with Carl. Carl goes off to get Jess’s book tape. JB notices Margaret wearing the same shade of nail polish as the one knocked on the floor of the office, and Margaret admits she was in the office that night but nothing more.  Tape in hand, JB is about to leave the studio when she sees Stony get into a fight with Carl, over some shenanigans with his niece. Apparently he wasn’t the only owner of the studio to have a crack either.

That night while Jess is listening to her tape reading, she has an idea. It looks like this:

This is how most thoughts appear in my head, to be fair.

This is how most thoughts appear in my head, to be fair.

Which leads to a cunning trap to catch the killer.

...fair enough?

…fair enough?

It turns out, Al not wearing a helmet was a clue – his visor was infrared, which meant he could scurry about in the dark stabbing Randy, after rigging his sound board with a switch to kill the lights. I guess he was the bootlegger?

And so concludes Season 3 of Murder She Wrote, aka the season I marathoned Breaking Bad with absolutely no side-effects. Stay tuned for the start of season 4 next week, and for more news on my new best idea ever, livetweeting a Murder, She Wrote movie.

But until then, dear reader

Later gang!

Later Fletcherfans!

S03E21 – The Days Dwindle Down

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Greetings and salutations Fletcherfans!

JB is California this week, staying in a fabulous hotel paid for by her publisher while she works on promotion for her new book, although her publisher is starting to think that her sideline solving mysteries is a bigger draw than her books (I can’t believe it took them that long).

A woman named Georgia Wilson overhears their conversation and later knocks on JB’s hotel room door begging for help. Her husband Sam has just come home from prison, where he’s spent the last 30 years in prison for a crime he supposedly didn’t commit. The crime…OF MURDER.

*DUN DUN DUNNNNNNNNNNNNN*

Because JB is the Supreme Goddess of Kindness, Benevolence and Being A Boss, she goes with Georgia to talk to Sam about his story. In a stunning coincidence, his story coincides with a movie he was in in 1949 called Strange Bargain, which allows for some helpful and surprisingly accurate flashback sequences.

As she hasn’t seen the movie, Sam tells Jess the story. Back in the day,  when he was a struggling actor assistant bookkeeper, he went to his boss Mr Jarvis for a raise. Instead, Jarvis fired him, saying that the firm couldn’t afford to keep him and he couldn’t afford to put more money into the firm – he had ten thousand dollars to his name.  That night, they met for a drink and Jarvis told Sam his scheme to fix his financial situation. He was going to kill himself but in such a way as to make it seem like murder, so that his family could receive his life insurance payout.

That night, Jarvis called Sam and told him he was going through with it, and sooner than he’d planned. Sam drove over there to talk him out of it but he was too late. So, like anyone would do, Sam took the gun and envelope with the money and hightailed it out of there, only just remembering to fire the gun into the house to make it seem like murder.

I think we can all guess where this is heading.

The next morning when Sam and Georgia go to pay their respects to Mrs Jarvis, Lieutenant Richard Webb tells Sam that they pulled three slugs out of the wall. Unfortunately for Sam his gaze goes straight to the wall in question, a fact noticed by Lieutenant Webb.

Speaking of…

WHO IS THAT?

WHO IS THAT?

In any case that look, coupled with Sam burning the letter from Mr Jarvis, meant that he was put away. Got all that?

(I kind of want to. To Google!)

(I kind of want to. To Google!)

Naturally, JB takes on the case because she is awesome. Sam and Georgia’s son Rod warns her that it’s a wild goose chase, but he has bigger problems. I’ll get to that later.

The next morning, after a raging night of reading through Rod’s case notes, JB kicks off her investigation with tacos and tequila for everyone a trip to the scene of the crime. Mr Jarvis’s son Sydney still lives in the house, and while he didn’t think Sam killed his father, he is suspicious of the new interest in the case. JB asks him about him telling Sam about seeing Mr Jarvis’s business partner Mr Hearne at his house that night, but all Sydney says is that there might have been other suspects but Sam was the one convicted.

Sidenote: Sydney is being played by Richard Beymer, and that sound you just heard was my mind exploding with the realisation that Tony from West Side Story and Benjamin Horne are the same person.

Seriously though, mind = blown.

Seriously though, mind = blown.

Sydney bows to JB’s persuasive powers of persuasion and agrees to let them “snoop” around the house. Jess asks him if she could speak to his mother, but he tells her that she passed away. Clearly noone told the postman, judging by the letter on the desk.

JB’s next port of call is the offices of Jarvis & Hearne, now run by Hearne’s granddaughter Dorothy. Dorothy tells her that the reason why her grandfather was at the house was to arrange for the transfer of Mr Jarvis’s share of the company to him. JB tells her that Mrs Jarvis told police that the sale happened after Mr Jarvis’s death but Dorothy tells her that isn’t true.

Next on JB’s hitlist is Thelma Vantay, Mr Jarvis’s former secretary. JB is eager to talk about the case but Thelma is more interested in other things. Like her ex-husband who never worked a day in his life but who had many other excellent qualities.

LIKE. A. BOSS.

THAT FACE. MY HERO.

When JB finally gets her onto the subject of Mr and Mrs Jarvis, Thelma is dismissive. Even though Edna Jarvis came home early from a weekend away to find her husband dead, Thelma is convinced she had nothing to do with his death – she simply didn’t have the guts. After JB drives off in her taxi-chariot Thelma gets on the phone to alert A Mystery Person that someone has an interest in their “problem”.

Anyway, remember when I said Sam and Georgia’s son Rod had bigger issues? Well his wife, it turns out, will make several future appearances on Murder She Wrote. As Grady’s wife.

Ugh. He's not even in this episode and he's annoying me.

Ugh. He’s not even in this episode and he’s annoying me.

Rod comes home to inform JB and his parents that Edna Jarvis is still alive, and JB decides to pay a call on her first thing in the morning.

That night, someone tries to shoot JB in the head but misses. The police roll in and pull a .38 bullet out of the chair, similar to the ones found in Mr Jarvis’s home. JB is convinced they came from the same gun but Rod’s boss is unconvinced. He agrees to compare them.

The next morning Georgia and JB pay a visit on Edna Jarvis, who has recovered nicely from being dead but is suffering from dementia. JB tries to question her about her husband but gets nowhere, and is soon interrupted by Sydney who angrily throws them out of the nursing home. JB asks him about Dorothy Hearne’s claims about the night of his father’s death but he tells her that Mr Hearne got control of the business way after Mr Jarvis’s death, and to question Dorothy about why she’s lying. JB informs him that Dorothy isn’t the only one misrepresenting the truth and storms off, taking his advice and going to see Dorothy who continues to denies her grandfather had anything to do with Mr Jarvis’s death.

Back at the hotel JB gets a mysterious call about the case, with orders to come alone. It turns out to be from the mysterious Lieutenant Webb who may seem familiar…

Am guessing he's going to be the first MASH cast member to not kill someone in this show.

Am guessing he’s going to be the first MASH cast member to not kill someone in this show.

He tells JB that he never really thought Sam killed his boss, and gives her the original police report, complete with ballistics report on the bullet retrieved from JB’s hotel room. Despite the fact that Sam threw the gun in the water off Santa Monica pier as per his instructions, it was used again 30 years later. JB asks him about Mr Jarvis’s insurance policy and he agrees that he found it suspicious but he couldn’t do anything more. He tells JB he considered the possibility that someone else knew about the life insurance policy and expected to get money out of it but the only other person they found who knew about it was Themla Vantay but despite Webb’s suspicions Thelma wasn’t having an affair with her boss.

Jess and Rod go to confront Thelma about what she knew about the death of her boss. She is reluctant to talk but when JB tells her the statute of limitations has expired on blackmail she comes clean. Thelma put two and two together about her boss’s death and the insurance policy and blackmailed his family to keep her mouth closed about it. Sydney eventually cut her off, and even when she called him a few days earlier to tell him about JB’s questions about the case he still refused to give her money, saying he was broke. “Can you believe the nerve of that guy?” Says Thelma.

Thelma's a teeny bit cray-cray

Thelma’s a teeny bit cray-cray

Rod is eager to go and tell his father that they can prove it was suicide but JB is unconvinced. There had to be a reason why someone fired her, and to cover up a 30 year old suicide just didn’t make sense. Rod points out that also seemed kind of dumb to use a 30 year old gun that can be traced back to the original case and this gives Jess a brainwave.

Eureka!

Eureka!

The trouble is, everyone assumed that Mr Jarvis killed himself or someone killed him. The truth was not quite so clearcut. The gun was retrieved from the water by Sydney, to remove fingerprints. Not from the handle, but from the barrel.

Wait. It's Murder She Wrote and noone has been murdered? I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO

Wait. It’s Murder She Wrote and noone has been murdered? I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO

Mr Jarvis had the perfect plan, but he didn’t count on his wife coming home and trying to stop him. She tried to take the gun off him, it went off, and that was that. Everything that happened since, including Sydney firing at Jess, was done to protect Edna.

But lets not focus on the depressing. I’m giving massive points to the Murder She Wrote writers for this episode, it was pretty clever the way they used the original movie as flashbacks. And never let us forget: OUR HEROINE IS A BOSS.

Stay tuned for the season 3 finale next week!

Later gang!

Later gang!