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S09E08 – The Classic Murder

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Back in the Big Apple Fletcherfans, where our Heroine is going out to dinner with her editor Sally Wilson and Sally’s father Buck. Buck is a squillionaire who has just bought a steakhouse chain and is contemplating buying the publishing company where Sally works (much to Sally’s horror).

JB remembers the steakhouse and is excited to go, but is rather taken aback by Buck’s changes.

I had a similar experience the first time I went to Outback Steakhouse, followed by an uncontrollable bout of giggling.

JB is soon introduced to Sally’s uncle Geroge and aunt Janine, and her father Buck who is exactly how you’d expect.

Unless you were thinking about Uncle Buck, which is reasonable because that movie was awesome.

Buck asks his brother in law if he remembered to ship his Cadillac out to the car show in Pasadena and George says he sure did but can they have a word? Apparently Buck’s company is about to be investigated for corporate shenanigans and George is worried but Buck says he has nothing to hide. He leaves George to get hand fed by a waitress/cowgirl (much to Janine’s disapproval) and takes Jess to meet the restaurant’s gimmick star, the psychic Marika Valenti. Apparently she and Jess have a lot in common, Marika uses her abilities to solve crimes too.

I think Jessica begs to disagree on this point.

Buck decides he’s a bit weary and tells Jess and his daughter that he’s going to get the driver to take him home to Westchester. Sally and JB decide to get a propery dinner somewhere less insane, but bump into Sally’s brother BJ who is trying to find his father. He rushes off after Buck, and Jess and Sally make their escape.

Back at House Buck, Buck is making a nightcap for two when the housekeeper, Mrs Oates wanders in. He’s surprised to see her, thinking she would be visiting a friend in Poughkeepsie but she tells him her friend got sick. She’s surprised to see him, as she thought that he was staying in the city but he tells her he changed his mind, he was tired. She offers to bring his nightcap and snack upstairs for him but he insists on doing it himself. After she leaves he finishes pouring the second glass of whisky (considerably less than the other one, stingy bastard) and goes upstairs.

Later that night George and Janine arrive back at House Buck and all is clearly well.

Such romance.

Janine is still rather peeved about her husband’s efforts with the waitress, and George is just miffed in general. She tells him to keep his voice down but he says they are the only ones here, Buck’s getting busy in town.

The next morning Mrs Oates goes to check on Buck but he’s nowhere to be found. Janine pops in and is concerned to see the state of Buck’s bathroom, more so when she finds a cigarette butt with lipstick on it. SCANDALOUS.

Back in the city, Jess and Sally are working on edits for Sally’s next book when BJ calls looking for Sally. He tells her Buck has gone missing, so JB and Sally jet on out to Westchester to see what’s up. Mrs Oates lets them in, saying BJ is out back with his friend and local cop Tom Jarrow interviewing Buck’s driver Carl Graham. Unfortunately for BJ and Tom Carl knows nothing and saw nothing, and when he opens the garage for them there’s not a car missing.

Spoiler alert, Tom is a bit of an early 90s dreamboat.

Sah dreamy.

BJ wants a word with George about business, and they excuse themselves. Tom tells JB and Sally that they couldn’t get much out of Carl, but that he swears that Buck came home alone. Janine appears and says that there was definitely evidence Buck was with a woman last night, and Sally wonders if it was the waitress from the restaurant. Tom says he’ll look into it and leaves.

BJ and George have a heated debate when George finds out BJ has been sniffing around the company accounts but BJ tells him it was serious – they are about to be investigated and there’s 150 million dollars missing, and now Buck is missing too.

A knock at the door is answered by Janine and Jessica – it’s Marika, who had a terrible premonition that something had happened to Buck. She understands now why Buck wanted her to meet JB, he knew they would have to work together to solve his disappearance.

No time.

Marika gets to psychic work, leaving JB to explain what she’s doing to Janine. She latches on to a photo and declares that Buck is dead, just as Jessica finds a bloody sheet under the bed. Janine screams.

Marika decides to hold some sort of psychic conclave (in the lanai, so presumably the Golden Girls are coming too) and sends JB to gather the troops. She finds Mrs Oates in the kitchen with Carl the chauffeur. Mrs Oates is excited to witness Marika at work, but Carl refuses and storms out.

In the lanai (turns out lanai means porch, guys I’m learning all the time), Marika tells the story of Buck’s demise in suspicious detail, including mention of a witness. She asks Jess if that’s enough for her to solve the case and Jess asks her if that’s all she knows.

Jess is leaving this one to the psychic

Marika then says Buck’s body was thrown in a well. Sally loses it and says she’s had enough of this nonsense and storms out. BJ has a theory of what Marika is talking about and takes Rob into Buck’s study to show him a picture of Buck’s first oil well. Rob points out it’s in Oklahoma and that the private jet isn’t missing, but he thinks BJ thinks Buck isn’t dead. BJ says yes but won’t go into why.

JB has a quiet chat with Marika after the performance, to ask her about her previous experience solving cases with her mind powers. Marika says it was with Scotland Yard but doesn’t go into details. She announces she has a headache and goes outside.

You guys I really think JB doesn’t like Marika.

As Marika departs Sally comes in to apologise for running out. Jess tells her she nearly went with her, and asks her if there are any old maps of the property. Sally says there are, but she checked and there are no old wells on the property. Jess gets a magnifying glass and finds something interesting on the map. She tells Sally to call Tom, they’ll meet him there in the morning.

The next day, Tom tells Sally that the waitress from the restaurant went home to her husband after her shift, she wasn’t having an affair with Buck. Jess finds what she was looking for and gets Tom to lift the cement. They find Marika’s body at the bottom of the pit, dead from a gunshot.

Jess takes about five minutes to formulate a theory. She’s convinced that Marika was the woman in the house the night Buck disappeared, and she thinks Carl knew it. They pay him a visit in his apartment next to the garage and find him packing his bags, about to leg it. He admits Marika was in the car when he drove Buck up the night he disappeared and he was meant to drive her back to town the next morning but that she asked him to drop her at a motel instead. Tom orders Carl be read his rights and taken to the police station and Jess excuses herself to go and make a phone call. Outside, she runs into Sally and BJ arguing. Sally is outraged at BJ’s theory that Buck didn’t die, he ran off with the missing 150 million.

Later that afternoon Tom pops in to check on Sally, but Mrs Oates tells him Sally isn’t feeling well. This turns out to be under orders from Sally who doesn’t want to see anyone. An emotional Mrs Oates runs into George, who is concerned about her. Mrs Oates is just devastated by the whole business, including the idea that BJ has about Buck running off with money. George tells her not to worry, he’s sure Buck will walk in the door any minute.

JB gets on the phone with her friend Inspector Mores Scotland Yard, who tells her Marika Valenti was a blackmailer who pretended to be a psychic to get dirt on her victims. JB is delighted to hear it. She runs into Sally again but Sally is determined to leave the house and go back to New York. Jess won’t have a bar of it, and instead wants to hear about BJ and Tom’s old hiding places. They go back to the garage and find Buck’s body in the back seat of one of his cars.

I mean they can’t have done much of a search to begin with *cough cough*

Tom thinks finding Buck’s body in the garage seals the case against Carl, but Jess isn’t so sure – Carl didn’t have a motive, there’s no evidence he knew about the missing money and even if he did they never found a trace of it. She suddenly remembers Buck’s plan to ship his car to a car show in Pasadena and gets Tom to track down the shipping company. When he calls them it turns out the car has changed destination and is now going to be shipped to Rio Di Janeiro.

Later that afternoon George gets a phone call from the shipping company, saying there’s been a delay – the car needs to be searched by customs before it goes down south. That night, the killer breaks into the shipping company to retrieve his money…

George seems to be the only person surprised by this.

It’s the classic tale – man gets busted embezzling money, kills man to stop from being discovered, kills fraud psychic blackmailer to stop from being discovered/blackmailed.

Case closed! Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a Doctor Who to watch.

Later gang!

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S09E07 – Sugar and Spice, Malice and Vice

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High up in an office tower in San Francisco, banker Paul Marlowe is wrapping things up for the night while his assistant Laura throws sass around. He suggests a drink, but Laura reminds him he is meeting his fiance Andrea. Laura’s more interested in hearing more about the merger but all Paul will say is he has insurance, and tucks a floppy disk into his jacket pocket. Laura heads off just as the bank’s boss Adam Quatrain sticks his head in. Paul tells him he is just leaving, and they get into the elevator discussing the merger with the Hong Kong bank.

Shady business dealings with foreign countries? That sounds like a job for the world’s second-greatest super spy.

Oh yep. I still got it.

Alas for the world’s second greatest super spy he is interrupted by the security guard and has to leave before getting whatever it was he was looking for.

Meanwhile Our Heroine has just arrived in town for a book convention but when she tries to check in to the hotel she is informed that Mr Smyth has taken care of everything. She goes up to her room which just so happens to be on the same floor as Paul Marlowe, and she passes Paul’s fiance Andrea in the corridor. (Andrea is being played by Ivy Crane from Passions. Man, that was a show).

Inside her hotel room JB notices a big bouquet of roses, with a card that only has a phone number on it. Of course she dials it – it’s Michael Hegarty with a warning. There’s a dangerous man in her suite.

Jessica DOES NOT HAVE TIME FOR THIS

Jess tells him that she wants no part of whatever shenanigans he’s caught up in this time, but Hegarty tells her that he is here on leave and wants to take her out for lunch in an hour, that’s all.

LIES! DAMNABLE LIES!

Meanwhile, Paul is meeting with Luc Lee (aka Joseph Yoshinobu Takagi from Die Hard) to celebrate the final stages of the merger and to suggest Lee give Paul five million dollars as payment for his services and for keeping his mouth shut about the sketchier sides of the Hong Kong bank’s business dealings. To prove just how much of a team player he is, he shows Lee a video of Hegarty breaking into his office and suggests that some of Lee’s associates might be able to do damage control.

Down by the bay Michael and JB are strolling towards their restaurant when a dark car pulls up. Someone winds down a window and starts firing. Hegarty pulls JB and a nearby flower seller to the ground and the car speeds away.

“On second thoughts there’s a perfectly lovely restaurant at the hotel,” says Michael.

They return to the hotel, and happen to queue to be seated behind Paul and Andrea, who are about to dine with Adam Quatrain and his wife Cynthia. Andrea sees them and demands to know if Hegarty is following her. He tells her they need to talk but she says they have nothing to talk about, he needs to stay out of her life.

Michael decides he’s no longer hungry and Jess tells him not to be ridiculous, letting an old flame ruin his appetite. Michael tells her she’s not an old flame, she’s his daughter.

Up in the hotel suite Michael comes clean – his marriage never lasted and he was never much of a father. But his ex-wife died the previous year, and he heard Andrea was engaged so he did some digging and found out that Paul was involved with the merger with the Hong Kong bank he got worried. The Hong Kong bank is controlled by Middle Eastern arms dealers and Colombian drug lords, there’s no way Paul’s not guilty as. Long story short could Jessica talk to Andrea woman to woman?

Jess is sitting this one out.

Jess says she’s not cleaning up a mess Michael made years ago. Michael says if she won’t help him, maybe he will just have to kill Paul.

Guys I think I know where this is heading

Luc Lee, nose still out of joint after Paul’s demand for money, goes to see Adam Quatrain and his business associate Brad Filmore to inform them of Paul’s demands. He’s also unhappy to learn that Paul’s future father in law is a British intelligence agent. All this is news to Adam and Brad, who assure Lee that the deal is done. Brad shows Lee out, and Adam’s wife Cynthia pops her head in to tell Adam he’s an idiot for letting Paul into the bank.

The man himself is having coffee in the hotel restaurant with Andrea, giving her pearls as an engagement present and discussing plans. Hegarty spots them and quickly suggests a drink to Jessica, who thinks it’s a bit early for a cocktail. He switches it to coffee and sits down. Jessica sees through the subterfuge though and tells him he’s being compulsive.

Paul gets a phone call and excuses himself, telling Andrea to put the pearls in the vault for safe keeping. Hegarty follows him, despite Jessica’s protests. He tails him down into the basement of the hotel, but gets a whack on the head for his efforts.  He wakes a short time later to find Paul dead from a gunshot wound, Michael’s gun on the ground next to him. Before Michael can grab it and make a getaway hotel security arrive, closely followed by SFPD’s finest, Pat Hogan. Charlie the security guy tells Hogan that he got a call from a hotel staff member saying she heard gunshots , went to investigate and found Michael leaning over Paul’s body. They cuff him and take him away, past a weeping Andrea who demands to know how her father could do such a thing. Michael swears he didn’t. JB just looks unamused.

Jess goes down to the precinct to see Michael who is sticking to his didn’t do it story, but is more interested in making Jess convince Andrea that he didn’t do it.  She does her best, and asks Andrea if she can think of anyone else who might want to hurt Paul. She says no, Paul was about to get a big promotion at the bank, it was all good.

They return to the hotel where they bump into Laura, Paul’s personal assistant. She is super down about the whole murder thing, but has been sent by Adam Quatrain to find some missing papers that might be in Paul’s briefcase. They go up to Andrea’s room to find it trashed – someone was looking for something. Hotel security arrive, but since nothing appears to have been stolen there’s not a lot that they or the police can do. JB is suspicious of this. Laura excuses herself and returns to the bank. The security guy tells Andrea they will move her to another room but Jessica says not to bother, Andrea will stay with her.

Jess heads down to the precinct, where Adam Quatrain and Brad Fillmore are demanding justice for their colleague/sussing out just what the police know. They excuse themselves when JB arrives, JB telling Adam on his way out that they couldn’t find the papers Laura had been sent to find. Adam doesn’t seem to know anything about it and bids them a farewell.

Jessica tells Pat Hogan about the room being searched, which is the first he’s heard of it. Turns out Paul’s house had also been searched, but with apparently nothing taken. Presumably it was something to do with the merger, but Hogan says no. He shows her the video that Adam and Brad just dropped in, of Michael breaking into Paul’s office. Jess tells Hogan about the international conspiracy but suggests he hear it from Michael. Michael tells the tale, but as he has no proof there’s not a lot they can do. He freaks out when he hears they went after Andrea but JB assures him that she is taking care of her. Michael wants out of prison, but there’s nothing he can do until a bail hearing which Jess’s lawyer is trying to arrange for a few days time. On his way back to his cell Michael manages to knock out his guard, pinches his gun and legs it out of the fire escape.

Jess and Andrea return to their hotel room to find Luc Lee chilling out waiting for them. He tells them he is looking for a computer disk that Paul had, and is willing to pay 2 million dollars to procure it. Andrea and Jessica tell him they know nothing, and he’s not buying it but then Michael bursts in gun drawn to save the day. Lee departs, followed a short time later by Michael. He has a theory that Paul was holding something over Luc Lee and he’s determined to find out what.

Michael goes to see Adam at his house, but he knows nothing about what Paul was up to. Cynthia swears he was with her at the time of the murder, which Adam points out is a lie (after Hegarty is gone of course).  Michael then meets up with Jess and Andrea again – he’s convinced Lee organised the breakins but he has no idea where the missing information is. Jess asks Andrea what exactly happened when Paul got the call – she tells her that the bartender brought the phone over to Paul, who sounded like he was talking to someone that he knew, and then told Andrea to put the pearls in the safe before he left.

Honestly, why does Hegarty even pretend to know what he is doing?

Back at the hotel Jess and Andrea pick up the pearls. Jess asks the head of security who called in the tip about the gunshot but he hasn’t found out who. It was definitely a woman, possibly one of the kitchen staff because who else would be hanging around down there?

She really is (although I worked this one out some time ago. Let’s just say I learned from the best)

Up in the suite Andrea puts in a phone call to someone to tell them she has found what they were looking for. Michael doesn’t like it, the plan is too risky but Jessica tells him he will just have to butt out and leave it to the professionals them.

A short time later, the killer arrives.

Surprise! Nah just kidding.

Laura, who had created the file that Paul was using as an insurance policy, decided to cash in on the information before Paul could.

You guys! This is Michael Hegarty’s last episode (and coincidentally the episode in which I found out I’ve been spelling his name wrong the whole time!)  So instead of some freeze frame love this week I think we should look back on that time JB pretended to be a rich widow on the prowl in Jamaica, the place where it all began.

Until next week, Fletcherfans.

 

S09E06 – Night of the Coyote

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Fletcherfans, remember that time Murder, She Wrote did that Native American episode and it was horrific? The good news is this episode is MUCH better than that episode, and it mostly contains Native Americans messing with dumb white people, which is a little hit and miss. I’m still an ignorant fool when it comes to Native American culture and depictions thereof, so let me know what you think about it.

BECAUSE WE’RE IN NEW MEXICO BITCH!

Guys I really think I should binge Breaking Bad again.

But even if I hadn’t yelled that at you, Jessica’s outfit at the start of this episode would be a Useful Guide.

I endorse that jacket completely TBH.

Jess is in Chaco Springs visiting her artist friend Susan Lindsay, who has taken her to see the main street reenactment of That Time What Cutter McGee Robbed A Bank And Got Caught By Navajo Indians. Once the show is over, Susan introduces JB to the brains behind the rebooted ghost town, Max Teller. He tells them to check out the museum before being called away by his secretary, who reminds him he has a meeting with a dude by the name of Ben Judson. Judson, it turns out, wants to buy the town of Silverville from Max but Max isn’t selling.

Jess and Susan adjourn to the Susan’s house in Chaco Springs, where Susan is showing off her work and JB is getting into the margaritas.

MARGARITAS FOR EVERYBODY

While Susan runs to check on her lasagne JB chats to another writer, Charles Strickland, who is in town researching the silver strike, but he assures Jessica that it’s no best seller. Max wanders past and says he hopes it will be so the tourists come running, and goes off in search of dinner. Jess tells Charles that she noticed Cutter McGee never lost his sea-faring ways, his sextant and things were kept immaculately. Charles tells her that he used them to navigate the desert – he also recommends JB doesn’t get Max started on the lost treasure of Cutter McGee.

JB has stopped listening.

Me, usually drinking tequila. Or coffee. Or pretty much anything really.

Later that night, Susan and JB are cleaning up after the party and Susan asks JB what she thinks of “him”. JB assumes she means Max, on account of the way Susan’s eyes never left him. Susan is embarrassed to think she was that obvious – she had sworn she wouldn’t get involved with another man after her divorce.

“Love’s sneaky like that. It blindsides you, just when you don’t want it and you think you don’t need it!” Says JB. (Life Lesson #67 right there)

Is she talking about Frank? Is she talking about someone else? I HAVE SO MANY QUESTIONS ABOUT THIS.

The next morning Max heads in to work and finds his old pal Tony kicking back with his feet up. Tony just wants to buy Max some breakfast and also demand his share of the contents of an off-shore bank account – Max knows which one. Max doesn’t want anything to do with Tony but Tony thinks he just needs some more time, something he knows all about. He tells Max not to bother with the cops, he’s clean now. Max on the other hand…people might be interested to know how he got the money to buy Silverville…

Meanwhile, JB is out in the desert looking for Heisenberg’s money communing with nature and lamenting the loss of her favourite pen. Jess decides to go for a wander while Susan paints, and has a chat with some coyotes before being startled by the sudden appearance of a Native American man sitting on a rock.  He tells her the echoes make it confusing up there, and that if you hear it at night you will understand why the shamans believe that the spirit of Coyote brings evil into the world. He introduces himself as Sam Keeyani, and warns her the track gets pretty dangerous up ahead with loose rocks and whatnot. Also there’s skinwalkers/witches, which he totally doesn’t believe in but you do think you see weird things in the shadows. Jess peers up the mountain and when she looks back, Sam is gone – in his place, her missing pen.

Back in Silverville, Max calls in Earl – one of the stuntmen/workers in Silverville – for a meeting. Turns out Earl has been shorting Max on his hay deliveries, and so Max fires him. Earl tells him the job stinks, he’ll just take his money and be gone, but Max says he doesn’t owe Earl a dime.

Earl wigs out.

Fun fact – I saw Point Break for the first time last week and it was excellent except I had Patrick Swayze’s haircut in 2007 I am not good at fashion.

Later that night, while Max wraps up his work day, someone sneaks into Silverville and burns down the museum. The next morning, Jess and Susan come to see if Max is alright, and Sheriff Sam Keeyani rolls in to take charge of the scene.

I legit have no idea why Susan is pulling that face but it amuses me greatly.

While appropriately mystical music plays, the Sheriff picks up a handful of dirt and watches it blow away before breathing in deeply. He asks Max if he has any enemies and Max tells him about firing Earl the previous night. Sam says it wasn’t Earl, does he have any others? Max says it was definitely Earl, but Sam says he’ll look into it but he needs a full list of enemies. Max departs for his office, closely followed by Susan. Sam offers Jess a ride back to Chaco Springs, and the promise of the best cup of coffee in town. At Max’s office, Susan tries to offer her help and money restoring the museum but Max is shutting her down and out, saying there’s more money in Cutter McGee than just a story for tourists. She gives up and tells him to keep his secrets to himself she’s not interested any more, and storms out.

Over a damn good cup of joe (OMG Twin Peaks though), Jess calls out Sam’s performance outside the museum, and he admits to smelling for gasoline and working out which way the wind was blowing. He also admits that someone handed in JB’s pen and he figured there’d only be one person in town with a fancy pen like that. Sam tells her he does it to lure suspects into a false sense of security.  Jess wonders how he’s so sure that Earl didn’t do it, and he tells her that the tracks he found show that someone wearing sneakers was the culprit, and Earl wears boots. Sam gets distracted by the arrival of local babe Alice Chee, who Sam is quite keen to know better if you know what I mean. Charles Strickland pops in with a list of items that were out on display at the museum, but he says there were boxes in the back he never got round to. Sam says he’ll check it out and goes back into his office. Charles offers to give Jess the Charles Strickland Historical Drive back to Susan’s house and she gratefully accepts.

Sam goes to see Earl at his ranch, who didn’t know Sam knew about it, or that the whole town was talking about it. Sam says he’ll have to read him his rights, but Earl says all he did was punch a guy at the bar. Turns out he was there all night, has witnesses and definitely didn’t burn down the museum.

The next morning Max’s secretary arrives for work and finds Max dead on the floor shot in the chest. Sam goes to inform Susan of Max’s murder, but she doesn’t seem terribly affected, telling Sam that they’d only been out a few times, she had no idea what he’d been up to the previous evening and she has work to do. Jess follows her to her studio, and she says she had wanted to kill Max the previous night, after the fight. She’d been back to see him to apologise, later that night but had found him and Betty together. She left before they saw her but she was too upset to talk to Jess about it the previous night.

Jess tells Sam about what she’s found out, and the two of them go to see Betty. She tries to bluster her way out of it, but cracks and admits she stayed and had some drinks with Max, she listened to how he was about to get rich, they got down to business (nudge nudge wink wink) and she left around 8:30 when Max said he was meeting someone. She didn’t know who it was, but she tells them about Ben Judson’s offer to buy Silverville earlier that week. Maybe that had something to do with it.

A deputy pops up to tell Sam that a man has been picked up driving Max’s car – it’s Tony Sable, Max’s sketchy friend from California. At the sheriff’s office he tells them that he and Max once had a mail order business going – Tony got greedy and so Max turned states evidence against him. Tony got four years, Max conveniently forgot to mention the offshore bank account where most of the money ended up, and when Tony got out of prison the money was gone.  He hadn’t seen Max since the previous afternoon – Max told him he had some money coming, and he would buy him off.

Jess notes that this is the third person Max told about his imminent windfall. Sam figures this is proof he was about to sell Silverville, but Jess thinks differently.  Max told Susan it was to do with Cutter McGee, maybe he had a line on the treasure? She decide to investigate at the library but before she goes, Sam asks her if it’s possible to meet someone in a dream – his uncle Ashie swears he has met Jessica many times in dreams. Jess says she doesn’t remember the name but there’s no way she’s turning that invitation down.

At the library she discovers that copies of the Silverville Gazette are missing from right around the time of Cutter McGee’s robbery, but the librarian tells her Charles Strickland already reported it. The only information left from that time are some misc bills of sale, a postcard and an old worthless bond from a company that went out of business in 1905. Disappointed, Jess is about to leave when she bumps into Charles Strickland. When he hears she’s wanting to find out more info on Cutter McGee he reaches into his briefcase to pull out a book on celestial navigation, inside which is the only known photo of Cutter McGee. Jess asks Charles if anyone knows how much Cutter stole, but Charles says he’s heard everything from gold bullion to bags of silver dollars. Whatever it is, he thinks it’s worth millions now.

Sam goes to visit Ben Jurnow, who wants to apologise for campaigning against having Sam as mayor. Times have changed, and we have to change with them, says Ben, and comes out with it – when his great grandfather moved west, he was attacked twice by Indians.

“I guess we have something in common,” says Sam. “Being as my great grandmother was murdered by a bunch of boozed up white settlers.”

No comment.

Jurnow tells Sam the sheriff’s department has never been so well run, how can he help? Sam asks about Ben’s offer on Silverville, and Ben says yes – he wanted water rights for his herd, Sam would have gotten the money and the bank (which he happens to be president of) would have avoided a foreclosure. He had no reason to kill Max though. He tells Sam that the bank has frozen Sam’s assets, bank accounts and a safety deposit box and Sam tells him he will send a deputy around for the box.

Later that night Sam takes Jess to see his uncle Ashie, who wants to repay Jess’s kindness in his dreams. Jess asks him (through Sam) if he knows the story of Cutter McGee and long story short, Cutter McGee hid out for a couple of days, but when he came out for water the Navajo found him and took his horse. McGee was killed by his own people a short time later.

Jess asks him if there’s anything she can do for him, and he says hell yeah sign this copy of your book.

I mean, at least they have managed to cast actual Native American’s this time (although I think the guy who played Sam is Canadian. Still, closer than Sri Lanka)

Back at Susan’s Jess finds Susan gazing into the fireplace, mourning Max. Jess tells her that with all the things she’s gotten to do since she’s become famous, she just wishes that Frank had been there to share it with her. Still, she’s made a lot of lovely friends along the way.

NAWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW.

At the Sheriff’s office the next day Sam shows Jess the autopsy report – traces of sand in the bullet wound and Max’s hair seem to suggest that Max was killed somewhere else and moved to his office. Sam also shows Jess the contents of the safety deposit box – Cutter McGee’s diary. Jess wonders at it not being on display, but then wonders if Max had held it back because he thought it contained directions to the treasure.  Some random numbers on the first page of the diary give Jess an idea about where the treasure is hidden, and where Max was killed. A map at the library gives them the general area, but it’s big. Jess remembers that Uncle Ashie said that his relatives were looking for rabbitbrush when they found Cutter McGee and Sam says there’s only one place that grows – Coyote Canyon, aka the place Jess was the first time she met Sam. THE CIRCLE OF LIFE YOU GUYS. They find traces of blood and so Sam calls in a forensic team. He points out a cave up the hill that the Anasazi used to bury their dead in, and Jess thinks she has a pretty good idea of how to catch the killer.

Back at the police station Sam returns the now empty safe deposit box to Ben Jurnow, while Jess calls Charles Strickland with her discovery. She offers to meet him at the canyon so they can find the treasure together.

Later that afternoon, Jess is wandering through the cave when Charles Strickland arrives. Jess is disappointed. She was waiting for Max’s killer. She shows Charles Cutter’s chest and he throws it open – it’s full of bonds for a certain company that went bust in 1905.

“Yup,” says JB. “You killed him for some worthless paper”

 

I have no opinion about this.

He didn’t mean to shoot Max, he swears – Max was pissed that Charles was going after Max’s treasure so when Max followed him to the canyon and confronted him Charles shot first and asked questions later.

Case closed!

Drink up Fletcherfans!

S09E05 – The Dead File

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In a big win for continuity, JB has (literally) just got back to her NYC castle from her European trip. Sid, the doorman who isn’t Ahmed carries Our Heroine’s bags into her apartment, but doesn’t want to hear about the trip so much as he wants to tell her how much he and his wife are enjoying the comic strip JB is appearing in.

“What’s this about a comic strip?” Says JB.

“That’s right, you’ve been away!” Says Sid LITERALLY CARRYING HER SUITCASE THROUGH THE DOOR. He shows her that day’s strip, in which Jessica Fox accuses a rat of stealing fish powder from the police station.

Holiday time is over.

Fun fact – Sid was in one of my favourite episodes of The West Wing, Life on Mars. Update your social media accounts accordingly.

Meanwhile, in another part of town, cartoonist Stan Hatter (aka Harvey Fierstein who I know from Independence Day) is hard at work drawing and dodging phone calls from his ex-wives while his assistant Teddy Graves just hangs out, noting that the man who has been loitering across the street from Stan’s office is back at it. The aforementioned man, Jerry Bozell, puts a call in to the man who hired him, Dayton Whiting, to report in on the complete lack of dirt available on Stan Hatter. Dayton, who also happens to be a cartoonist (and we all know the complicated vendettas that cartoonists hold), tells him if he can’t find something make it up. Jerry threatens to quit but Dayton mollifies him with the promise of money on Monday.

JB returns from a successful trip to the supermarket when she is accosted by Lieutenant Peter DiMartini, the aforementioned fish-powder-filching rat from the comic strip. He wants to know why JB has been slandering his name in the press.

I can’t begin to tell you how happy this pic made me.

Jess tells him she has no idea about any of it, but remembers a drug bust a few years earlier where drugs were taken from the evidence locker  – and DiMartini was the main suspect. She tells him to talk to Stan Hatter, she knows nothing. As he leaves, JB asks him if he did steal the drugs but he just walks out. Jess puts in a call to her lawyer, but his secretary tells her he’s already on his way over.

At the headquarters of Empire Feature Syndicate, Dayton is begging for an advance on his royalties from editor Paige Kindle (amazing name), who is disinclined to help as Dayton’s royalties are dropping. They are interrupted by a visit from Stan Hatter, incensed that a counterfeit cartoon has been published under his name. He threatens to walk away from the whole deal until Paige threatens to sue Stan for All Of The Things. He storms out, and Paige wonders whether Teddy could take over the cartoon. Dayton would be happy to help, after all Stan stole the idea from him.

Meanwhile, in yet another part of town, shady financier (aren’t they all though) Roger Melton takes time out from his shady business dealings to read that day’s cartoon – about a shady financier duck that Jessica Fox is accusing of corruption. Roger is incensed and gets straight on the phone to Paige Kindle.

Back at House Fletcher, JB’s defence lawyer Russell Yorke arrives with more bad news – he’s aware of the cartoon and has been contacted by Roger Melton’s lawyers who plan to sue JB, Stan Hatter and Empire Feature Syndicate for All Of The Things. JB is stunned, but Russell says even if she can prove there’s no case to answer the legal fees will rack right up.

Honestly guys, I’m just here to amuse myself, the fact that you all enjoy it is just icing on a delicious delicious cake.

Jess takes matters into her own hands and goes to see Stan Hatter, who is hard at work trying to make deadline on his next cartoon and blaring opera for all to hear. Stan sends Teddy to stop the knocking but JB bursts in demanding answers. Stan assures her he had nothing to do with the DiMartini cartoon, and is horrified when JB pulls the Roger Melton cartoon out of her bag. He had nothing to do with that one either. He shows her the real cartoon, with some horses and a cow with multiple personality disorder.

I’d like to think we are all being punked right now, it’s so much nicer than the alternative.

Stan promises he will get Jessica off the hook – he’ll talk to his lawyers and if need be he’ll write her out of the cartoon. He loves JB, he never meant to complicate her life. NAWWWW.

Back at home, Jess gets another visit from Lieutenant DiMartini. This time he’s received an old-school cutout word blackmail letter demanding 250 thousand dollars to stop the publication of the cartoon that proves he stole the fish powder/drugs. Jess can’t figure out why he has come to her about it until he peels one of the newspaper words back – the newspaper of choice for the blackmailer was the Cabot Cove Gazette, specifically last Tuesday’s paper.

All this and jetlag too, there is nothing she can’t do! #craprhymeSunday

Jess goes back to see Stan, but he swears he had nothing to do with the blackmail either. He tries to show her how the cartoon that was printed differs from the ones he draws but he’s not buying it. Ben Watanabe, the guy who does the lettering on the cartoons swears it’s not his work either. They are interrupted by Paige Kindle who is also furious with JB’s attempts to blackmail.

Paige, Stan and JB pay a visit on Roger Melton who has reached a level of outrage that could only be described as incandescent. Jess has no time for it and tells him to sit down.

Yes I paraphrased the quote. I AM A REBEL.

Jess says assuming that Stan is telling the truth, who else might be behind it? Stan rattles off a long list of names including his five ex-wives, the people he’s skewered in the cartoons, and Dayton Whiting.

Later that night, Ben Watanabe lets himself in to Stan’s office to start work on the newest cartoon when he hears a noise. He goes to investigate, and gets clocked on the head.

The next morning Jessica goes to see Dayton Whiting, who wants to give Jessica some friendly advice – sue Stan Hatter for all he’s worth, that will put an end to her problems. Jerry Bozell appears demanding money, but is shuffled off by Dayton who promises to give him money that afternoon. Jessica refuses to believe that Stan would let his creations be tarnished by something so unsavoury. A fellow cartoonist wanders past and asks if they’d heard about what happened to Ben.

Jess heads down to Stan’s offices where the police, led by Sergeant Martha Redstone, have ruled the case a suicide pending any other evidence. Jess talks her way into the office, and Redstone asks her just what her connection to all this is, bearing in mind she has heard about Jessica’s obsession with death.

(Not entirely inaccurate though let’s be honest)

Jessica points out that the statue on the table has a crack in it, which she doesn’t think was there the previous day. DiMartini pops in after hearing about it on the radio and Redstone starts demanding answers. Jess and Stan dismiss the idea that Ben was the fake cartoonist, killed to stop his cartoons, since the potential murder weapon was already in the office and not brought with the killer. Redstone wonders if the whole thing was staged to look un-premeditated by someone with knowledge, like a disgraced cop. She orders them all not to leave town and departs.

Across town, Dayton Whiting is having a meeting with Roger Melton, to offer his support and services during this difficult time. Dayton tells Roger that he has been conducting an investigation into Stan Hatter, and the investigation is about to pay off big time, and so –

“How much?” Says Roger.

Dayton smiles. “Ten thousand dollars, but it’s”

Roger orders his secretary to cut a cheque for ten grand but tells Dayton he expects results. Dayton goes straight to Jerry’s office and hands over three grand. Jerry asks about the extra week in advance but Dayton shoots him down, saying he doesn’t need Jerry any more.

Down at the precinct DiMartini confronts Redstone about her suspicions about him – she’s faced the wrath of internal affairs before, she should know how it feels. She relents, and tells him to report back on Jessica’s activities…and when they catch the murderer it’s her collar. (Because, it turns out Jess was totes right about the statue being the murder weapon).

DiMartini calls Jessica to let her know about the murder weapon. She’s at the offices of Empire Feature Syndicate trying to work out what the blackmail victims have in common. Paige Kindle wanders in and says they all have the same sleazy secrets in common – which gives Jessica an idea. She and DiMartini pay a visit to Jerry Bozell, who is in the middle of packing to leave town. He tells them that yes he used to have a “Dead File’ of gossip he couldn’t get printed, but that it was stolen. He’s leaving town before someone else works out that he was the source of the slander.

Jess and DiMartini go to see Dayton Whiting again, who denies any knowledge of Jerry’s activities, saying he was paying Jerry for publicity. Unfortunately for Dayton Jerry was recording the whole thing, and so he admits to looking for dirt on Stan but that he was otherwise occupied with a lady friend on the night of the murder. DiMartini thinks they are back to square one, but Jess has the vague inkling of a plan. They go back to Stan’s office and Jess hunts under a pot-plant to find an artists glove. They put it in for testing and report in to Redstone, who isn’t buying it. Ben Watanabe went to a variety of studios to do lettering and no one knew his schedule except Ben. Jess says that’s true but that Ben got a call from one of the artists to say he wasn’t needed that night – leading Jess to think the killer was familiar with Ben’s schedule. Redstone tells them the lab report came back and the blood they found was Ben’s. Jess says that’s fine, and leaves a message for Stan.

Not so much for Stan, more for the killer.

I can’t even tell if I saw this coming to be honest.

Teddy-boy was hired by Dayton to create counterfeit cartoons with the gossip in them, and when Ben came into the office off-schedule, he freaked and clocked him with the statue. He threw Ben off the balcony to make it look like suicide.

Case closed. On another note, sending all the love in the world to the UK today. Don’t let those hate-filled bastards win.

Later gang.