Ciao e Benvenuto in Italia Fletcherfans, Genoa to be exact, where an opera singer wanders the foggy streets in a blind panic while having chats with weirdos with high pitched voices and her friend kicks it at the definitely haunted theatre watching rehearsals.

DEMON AUDIENCE

Okay on second watching the guy is reading a newspaper. To be fair I can’t be bothered going to get my glasses.

In any case, JB watches on while Stella Knight rehearses and Maestro Drew Granger waves his baton about (not code). Fun fact – he used to be married to Linda Hamilton way back when thanks IMDB. Someone called Vicki Lawson appears to get Drew’s approval on the album artwork (he hates it) and Stella’s husband appears to offer his opinion on Stella no longer being the star of the show (he hates it, but not as much as Stella).

The star of the show, Andrea Beaumont, is late to rehearsal which sours Drew’s mood and he kicks JB out of the rehearsal. The reason for the lateness is revealed – she was the person wandering the fog having chats with weirdo strangers and being threatened. JB and Drew rush over to the hotel room where Andrea’s husband Jonas Cole watches over while a doctor checks her out. The doctor tells them she is fine but Drew wants to hire more security. Jonas informs him he can take care of his wife and tells Drew to leave. (Drew and Andrea were hot and heavy pre-marriage to Jonas and Drew isn’t coping in this brave new world).

Jonas is worried that it’s a repeat of a year earlier when a crazy fan stalked Andrea but he’s apparently in prison back in New York. JB suggests there is a second possibility – that the stalker is disguising their voice because they are known to Andrea.

I mean I wouldn’t have thought that was the standard reaction to the idea that someone you know is stalking you

Jessica decides to have a little investigation of her own and goes for a wander. She bumps into Inspector Piero Amato aka John Hamm’s Tall Italian Cousin who is also investigating the attack on Andrea.

This is freaking me out a little bit. Yes I meant signor, it’s too late to change it now, sorry Italy and Spain.

Piero knows nothing about opera but is a Jonas Cole fanboy (apparently Jonas is a bit of a daredevil rock climber). He knows about Andrea’s stalker in New York, but thinks this is nothing more than a stunt drummed up by Jonas Cole in order to sell opera tickets.

Jessica does not agree.

Jessica is immune to Italian Don Draper

The next day Drew rolls into the theatre and informs the company director Rudolfo Petrocelli that there’s nothing else for it, he needs to release Drew from his contract for the good of the production. Rudolfo wonders if it has anything to do with Drew being offered a sweet gig back in New York and Drew says how dare you and how did you know about that.

Fun fact Rudolfo is being played by Bob Hoskins in Super Mario Bros.

I WILL DEFEND SUPER MARIO BROS TIL THE END OF TIME DON’T @ ME

Rudolfo is in a bad mood after Drew’s little stunt and it doesn’t improve when the company accountant Carlo Rossoni comes to talk finances. Only when Carlo confirms that the company would get a substantial payout if Andrea pulls out of the show does Rudolfo feel better about life.

Back at the hotel, Andrea is getting ready to go to the theatre and Jonas is fondling his gun (not code) when there is a phone call – it’s the weird-voiced person again telling Andrea all about how they plan to kill her.

Piero summons them to his office, where he assures Jonas that his team will protect Andrea, saying that a policeman in Italy won’t get far if he can’t stop an opera singer from being hurt. He has the situation under control – he’s going to tap their phone, and a preliminary investigation has revealed no suspects.

Jessica informs them all that the stage door manager hasn’t noticed anyone lurking around.

He brought this on himself

Piero has more news – the crazy New York stalker guy is out of jail, but reporting to his parole officer and is not in Italy. Jonas wants to know where this leaves them and Piero says he is an an unsophisticated guy with no knowledge of opera…

No comment

…do Andrea and Jonas have any personal or professional enemies?

Probably, says Jonas. They’ll all be at our house tonight, says Andrea.

And so, later that night, everyone rolls up to Jonas and Andrea’s for a shindig. Rudolfo is outraged that he wasn’t recognised by the police at the front door, Stella and her husband apparently hate Andrea according to Andrea.

Detection on point.

While Rudolfo tries to discuss finances or lack thereof with Jonas, Drew gets Andrea alone and delivers a heartfelt speech that is only ruined by Jonas wandering in and giving him a golf clap. Jonas and Drew get heated before Drew throws himself out.

Oh how I can relate to this.

After the party is over and Jonas is trying to suck up, the phone rings with the mystery weirdo again. Jessica isn’t worried – the call is being traced, it’s going to be fine.

At the theatre the next day Stella’s husband Paul is begging Drew to give Stella more songs to sing but Drew isn’t interested in stroking Stella’s ego – she’s yesterday’s news. Drew then bumps into Carlo Rossoni who suggests he might have a way for Drew to get out of his contract (for the right price) but Drew isn’t interested in that either.

Andrea is there ready for her final costume fitting and rugged up due to some dodgy ac (which Stella offers to fix by swapping changerooms so she can get the star changeroom back). Vicki excuses herself for a moment to take a call – the lights go out, the weirdo’s voice is heard and there’s a hand with a knife before the lights flick back on. The stalker runs away and Vicki reappears to comfort Andrea.

Jessica has a chat to Piero about all the shenanigans and tells him she knows the American stalker guy has gone awol but Piero is all over that. Plus he has a suspect in mind – the call from the stalker that JB overheard came from a payphone two streets away from Rudolfo’s house.

Apparently, this guy was in Die Hard, which I will report back on when I do my annual Christmas watching of Die Hard. (DIE HARD IS #1 CHRISTMAS MOVIE DON’T @ ME)

Meanwhile, Vicky has just discovered that Rudolfo has been leaking information about Andrea and the stalker to the press, and is outraged about it. Rudolfo, on the other hand, has discovered who has been messing with Andrea and wants in on the whole thing. He arranges to meet the stalker later that night back at the theatre, and after some frankly terrible dialogue about how cold it is (they are obviously in Andrea’s dressing room) the stalker shoots Rudolfo dead.

The next day Jonas is on the warpath after seeing news articles about Andrea and storms off to find Rudolfo. Vicky arrives just in time to hear two gunshots. They all rush upstairs and find Jonas leaning over the body of Rudolfo, gun in hand. “It’s my gun!” Jonas says, confused, as the security guard draws his weapon and orders Jonas to drop it. “Jessica, I didn’t do this,” Jonas adds.

(At this point let the record show that an auction started next door and as I am fascinated by anyone who can afford real estate in Melbourne I immediately lost interest in everything else, and then I heard the asking price for said auction and immediately gave up on life. And then I started playing the Murder She Wrote theme really loudly because if you are moving near me you may as well be prepared).

Back in Genoa Piero thinks everyone needs to relax – Andrea isn’t in any more danger now that Rudolfo has shuffled off. JB wants to know if his voice matched the voice on the call recording but Piero isn’t sure yet. He explains to Jonas that if he comes clean he will word up the prosecutor but Jonas swears he didn’t do it. Piero sighs and arrests him for being obstinate.

Later, in the theatre, Drew dumps Vicki (apparently they were a thing) and also fires her as the PR rep. Jess drops by the theatre to pick up some of Andrea’s things and runs into Drew, who tells her he’s moving back to New York and he’ll keep in touch with Andrea. Apparently, his contract is void now Rudolfo has gone. Jess then comes across Caro and Paul Fuller arguing about who will pay for the audience to clap and cheer Stella now that she’s taking over Andrea’s role.

Jessica sneaks into Andrea’s room for a bit of sleuthing.

Auction update: no one bought. It was either the loud Murder She Wrote theme or the high cost of living in Melbourne. Or both.

A pen dent in the floor and a broken air conditioner later, and Jess gives Jonas the good news – there’s no way he could have killed Rudolfo, he’d been dead for hours! While Piero reinstates Andrea’s security detail, Jonas calls to give her the good news (after a wrong number false start). Andrea is delighted to hear he is free, goes and locks the door as instructed, and is devastated when the next phone call she gets is from the psycho killer.

Jonas and Andrea make plans to leave for New York, while Stella makes plans to reclaim her rightful dressing room. Piero assures Andrea that she will be well guarded but she doesn’t feel secure. Later that night Jonas gets a call from a furious Carlo who threatens to get an injunction forbidding them from leaving Genoa. Jessica shares a wad of paper she found in Andrea’s dressing room with Piero, and after a wrong number and a reference to mountains, Jessica works out how the killer did it.

EPIPHANY FACE

And luckily for Andrea, she’s worked it out just in time to stop the killer from getting to her.

As far as villainous plots go, this was pretty good.

Jonas hatched a plot to bump off Andrea and get her life insurance money and recruited Vicky as an accomplice. Rudolfo found out what Jonas was up to so he killed him and framed himself so that Jessica could prove he didn’t do it. Except then she proved he did. Suck it, Jonas.

Later gang!

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