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S05E17 – The Sins of Castle Cove

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Happy Eurovision Fletcherfans. The final has happened but due to time differences and the fact that I get up at 5am for no song contest I still don’t know who won. (It must have been Sweden. I mean, did you see him? 12 points to anyone who can get me his phone number…I mean, the animations were amazing. Also, I did enjoy Israeli N*Sync this year, they were fun. Still can’t believe Moldova didn’t make it through though. And I hope Guy Sebastian did well, even if I think Tism should have been our entry just to confuse people even more).

But enough about that because we are back in Cabot Cove this week Fletcherfans, where the clients of everyone’s favourite beauty parlour is watching Top of the Morning Book Nook, a book review show featuring an up-and-coming writer from Cabot Cove named Sybil Reed. The interviewer points out Sybil isn’t the only writer to come out of Cabot Cove and Sybil agrees, saying that JB Fletcher was a massive influence on her work.

Thanks, Captain Obvious.

Thanks, Captain Obvious.

JB and Seth reminisce about the Life of Sybil – her mother running away, her father dying unexpectedly (murdered, probably, since it’s Cabot Cove but this is never confirmed), and Sybil living with her grandmother on Hedgehog Lane until her grandmother’s death when Sybil was 17. Seth announces he will go over to the bookstore and see if they have any copies of the book, to which JB says she would be grateful, not that she’s in a rush to read it or anything. LOL, J/K she needs it now, she’s so excited for her former pupil nawww.

The whole town is down at the bookshop, wanting to get their hands on the book. In the queue, the ladies from the beauty parlour all compare notes as to how they helped Sybil when her grandmother died, except Phyllis who points out that Sybil’s mother was the first girl to put gym socks down her bra in junior high and Ideal remembers slapping Sybil’s father’s face but for reasons long forgotten. Seth proceeds to the front of the queue by announcing his presence and bumps into the Sheriff, who is buying a copy of the book for his wife, banged up after dropping a person on her foot during her self-defence class. The bookshop owner, Ellis Hillgate greets Phyllis, Ideal and Eve but saves a special hello for Miriam who is not as excited.

Shot down.

Shot down.

Recovering, Ellis greets Seth as Doctor Valiant, to which Seth gets uppity saying “You know perfectly well my name is Hazlitt.”

“Not in my book.” Ellis dangles it in front of Seth’s face and he snatches it. Ellis informs him the book is $18.95, at which Seth is scandalized, saying he can remember a time when you could get a whole set of encyclopedias for $15 and still have change for a seafood dinner and a picture show.  He tells Ellis he will deduct the amount off his next doctor’s bill, to which Ellis says “Page 14.”

While eager patrons flip pages to the page in question, Seth beats a hasty retreat back to Jessica’s house, where she investigates the book and discovers that Castle Cove’s Doctor Valiant is a cross between a leprechaun and a curmudgeon.

Hipster JB is possibly my new favourite JB

Hipster JB is possibly my new favourite JB

Jess tells him to take a chill pill but Seth tells her he’s not the only resident in the book – a lot of people are going to get their noses bent out of shape and for the record JB might take special notice of the fictitious English teacher by the name of Mrs K C Feather – “that should stiffen your syllabus for quite some time.”

Not amused

Stiffen your syllabus? Really Seth?

Later that evening, JB’s syllabus has definitely stiffened.

Syllabus is code for tea right?

Syllabus is code for tea right?

JB gets a visit from Eve Simpson, who has apparently just had the worst experience of her life. She notices JB’s copy of the book and says she knows JB will be just as disgusted, appalled and horrified as she was that such filth was allowed to be printed.

Does anyone else really want to read this book?

Does anyone else really want to read this book?

JB is confused – Eve has always been all about free speech. She still is, but not in relation to the fictional Castle Cove man crazed real estate agent that goes after every husband in town that is clearly nothing but a slanderous lie. “Surely it isn’t based on you.” Says JB.

It isn’t. Except for the descriptions of the house, the office, the car “and the mole on my fanny which is on the wrong side!”

Eve clearly isn't from Australia, where that sentence means something else entirely.

Eve clearly isn’t from Australia, where that sentence means something else entirely.

JB tells Eve to calm down, but Eve says once JB has discovered KC Feather, then they will talk. Meanwhile across town, Noah Harwood has just arrived home from a hard day’s whatevering to find his neighbour sniggering on the nature strip and asking Noah if he’d read any good books lately. Noah tells his wife Miriam that he thinks George has too many worms in his bait can. Miriam, who has just hidden the book in the fridge to stop Noah finding it, panics when he goes to get a beer but dissuades him from reading the book by saying “you wouldn’t like it, a woman wrote it.”

Nicely done Miriam. The national treasure Noah smacks her on the butt and goes off to wait for his dinner. Later that night JB is dragged out of bed by a knock at the door – it’s Sybil, needing a place to crash while the chaos of the book tour settles down. JB tries to palm her off but Sybil makes herself at home in about 3o seconds. “It’s good to be home in Castle Cove,” she says.

Glad to see fame hasn't gone to Sybil's head.

Glad to see fame hasn’t gone to Sybil’s head.

Meanwhile across town, someone has just broken into the bookstore, taken all the copies of The Sins of Castle Cove and set them on fire. Everyone’s a critic.

The next morning JB finds Seth auditioning to be a part of Beyonce’s dance crew.

This is my favourite screencap of all time #nailed it

This is my favourite screencap of all time #nailed it

Seth asks JB what brings her out on such a fine morning and she tells him an unexpected house guest arrived, and the cupboard was bare. Seth asks her if it just might be a budding young novelist off the Portland bus – he heard about it at the diner that morning from the taxi driver. JB confirms it but admits that’s not the only reason why she’s out of the house early – she read the book. They find Ellis the bookstore owner out the front of his shop, outraged at the damage that had been done. Sheriff Metzger informs Seth and JB that a fisherman spotted the fire as he was coming in on the boat – someone torched all the copies of the book and left a cut out note saying stop selling the book or all will  burn. “Wonder why they don’t like this book?” Mort wonders.

She is just the best.

She is just the best.

Back at home JB get a phone call but it’s for Sybil – it’s her friend Corinne, who happens to be the manicurist at the beauty parlour. She gives Sybil an update on the fallout from her book – everyone is going nuts about it. She is called away by Loretta the owner, who has Eve waiting for a manicure. Loretta is unbothered by the book, but Miriam is worried. There’s a little plotline about an unfaithful wife and a scumbag husband that’s a little too close to home if you get my drift, but they tell her not to worry. As soon as she’s gone Eve confirms Miriam had a little fling with the butcher, but refuses to confirm she did too – all she will say is that the butcher’s mother is something else.

Across town,  said butcher has just received a visit from a very drunk Noah looking for his wife. He threatens a smackdown but Mulligan the butcher holds him off. JB intervenes before a very cross woman arrives ordering Noah home and lock up his wife and JB to back away from her pure and innocent boy (who’s probably 37). Later that night, Mort is called to a crime scene at Miriam and Noah’s house – Miriam has been murdered. Mort orders Deputy Floyd to get the state police in and to dust the house for prints, but Floyd says there’s no need – he knows who the kill is, it’s in the book.

Meanwhile JB is trying to have a heart to heart with Sybil when she gets a phone call from Seth, cancelling their antiquing day trip, on account of he’s been called in about the murder. Deputy Floyd arrives at the house to take JB down to the station, because Mort is stressed out. Books written about murders before they happen is just not the sort of business he signed up for. Jess points out it’s not entirely the same – in the book Miriam was killed by a lamp not a frying pan – but Mort doesn’t care. Floyd found Noah passed out drunk in his truck and brought him in to sober up but Mort is worried that once Noah is sober, Mort will be letting a killer go, since the book isn’t the greatest evidence. JB asks what other evidence he has and he tells her the only place that didn’t have Noah’s or Miriam’s fingerprints was on the frying pan – it had been wiped clean. Jess says that makes no sense – they would expect Noah’s prints on the frying pan it was pointless him wiping them off. Jess remembers the same thing happens in the Sins of Castle Cove, saying it made no sense in that either. Mort begs her to keep it quiet until he can sort the mess out.

Over in the beauty salon, Corinne is under instruction from Sybil to find out why Jessica went off in a cop car. Ugh, you guys Sybil is kind of the worst. The ladies put their heads together and work out something must have happened to Miriam, but get distracted when Corinne accidentally lets slip that Sybil is in town. Eve marches right over to JB’s house, where Mort is interrogating Sybil about how she knows what she knows. Eve storms in and says Miriam’s death was her fault, and that Miriam had been about to dump Tim the butcher but never got the chance.

Or did she? Mort and JB visit Tim at home, where he denies killing Miriam, but Floyd finds a black mask and a baseball bat in the basement. That’s enough for Mort, so despite JB’s scepticism he arrests Tim.

Down at the Sheriff’s office Mort gets Ellis to sign a complaint so he can hold Tim while they build a case. Tim’s mother arrives with fifty bucks to bail Tim out, but a little sleuthing on Jess’s part reveals the truth – Rose Mulligan was the book burner, in an effort to stop people finding out about her son and Miriam. “Who’d want to buy sausages from a man who played around with married women?” Asks Rose, sadly.

SO MANY ENTENDRES

SO MANY ENTENDRES

Mort is displeased that he now has to book a senior citizen on a bunch of felony charges but Jess thinks she can smooth it over with Ellis. Mort asks Floyd to get Noah out of the drunk tank but Floyd, in a remarkable display of initiative, has already let Noah go on account of having Tim under arrest and all.

Down at the bookstore Ellis is in a charitable mood, and agrees to drop the charges as long as Tim agrees to pay for the damage. Ellis is sad about Miriam though – according to him they used to drink herbal tea and discuss books when it was quiet in the store. Ironic, he thinks, that she was killed in the kitchen like in the book.

Later that night JB and Seth are having a catchup discussing the case, and while Sybil spouts off her theory about the real killer (Eve Simpson, obvs), Jessica suddenly realises she’s known all along.

Depressing plot twist anyone?

Depressing plot twist anyone?

Ah yes. Ellis was just desperate to be loved, and when Miriam wouldn’t love him, the frying pan happened. Man, that got dark quickly.

But now, I must away. The Eurovision final awaits!

Later gang!

Later gang!

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S04E08 – Steal Me A Story

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JB is in LA for a book tour this week Fletcherfans, where a young woman named Gayle Yamada would very much like to speak with her. Her new boss, TV producer Avery Stone has rejected her story ideas for his TV show Danger Doctor and has asked instead that she use a story he read a summary of the other week… a summary of the new book by JB Fletcher. Our Heroine, being the kind and beneficent Queen of All Things, thinks the whole thing is hilarious and offers to help Gayle write a new plot line to give to Avery instead.

It looks like it’s going to take a little more than some JB magic to fix the problems on Danger Doctor though. The two leads on the show, Brenda Blake and Gary Patterson (previously seen as the Sheriff here), are getting fed up with the terrible scripts, and director Bert Puzo (previously seen here as Frank) is getting fed up with Avery’s colleague Sid Sharkey (who has already been seen here and here and will be back). To make matters worse, Stone is less than enthusiastic about Gayle’s story when she brings it to him, and less so when he finds out JB had been helping her. JB, always looking out for the little guy, decides to go over Avery’s head and goes to see network bigwig Kate Hollander, who has been trying to secure the rights to one of JB’s books. Kate swears up and down that she was unaware of Avery Stone’s thieving ways and that she’ll put a stop to it. After all, she’s been such a fan of JB’s work for so long and she’s so eager to bring her book to the small screen.

Ah yes, thinks JB. “Murder at the Asylum?”

“I loved every page,” says Kate.

“Oh dear I must be confused.” JB says. ” I think that we’re negotiating Calvin Canterbury’s Revenge”

JB had no time for your crap.

JB had no time for your crap.

Sid Sharkey doesn’t appreciate Kate telling him how to do his job and orders Avery to come into his office immediately. He accuses Avery of stabbing him in the back and fires him. Avery tells him they have a contract and until he hears differently he is going to keep working until he takes Sid for every penny. Things go from bad to worse for Sid when a call comes in from the crew – Gary Patterson has just stormed off the set. Sid marches down to the set and tells Bert to do whatever he has to do to get Gary back on the set or he’s fired. Bert genuinely couldn’t care less until Sid quietly reminds him of the time Sid put Bert in rehab after snorting half of Tijuana and gave him his first directing gig afterwards. Sounds like a threat huh?

Sid’s troubles are far from over. Brenda Blake, one of the stars of the show, had asked to be written out of the next three episodes so she could shoot a movie but Sid’s not having a bar of it, even when Brenda threatens to walk. Sid has two words for her: CON TRACT. His advice? Lay back and enjoy it.

Ugh.

Ugh.

That night, JB goes to pay a visit on Sid Sharkey but finds him out of his office. Instead she finds his secretary Frieda Schmidt (played by Fionnula Flanagan who has been in everything including but not limited to the Murder She Wrote movie Celtic Riddle EVERYTHING MOVES IN CIRCLES). Frieda informs JB, while taking a message for her boss about lunch at the Polo Club with a Mr Perlman, that Sid is out for the night but that she has the messages that JB left and that she will see that he gets them.  To make up for it, Frieda offers to drop JB back at her hotel.

Later that night Avery is alone in the studio working late. Except for the cleaning lady, some footsteps belonging to an unseen high heeled wearing stranger and Sid, who has decided that all of his problems will be fixed if they fire Bert in the morning. Avery goes home, weary, leaving Sid alone in his office with a package, which he excitedly opens. And then it explodes.

That’ll teach him for that “lay back and enjoy it” remark.

JB is summoned to the crime scene, as despite the blowing-upness, the office is almost entirely undamaged, including the note that Frieda left for her boss saying that JB was trying to get in touch. Inside, JB finds that Gayle had also been summoned, because as it turns out Lieutenant Bradshaw has a very important question for them.

[starts aggressively rocking out to the guitar solo in Live and Let Die]

[starts aggressively rocking out to the guitar solo in Live and Let Die]

In the interests of fact, Bradshaw would actually like to know where JB has been for the last three hours. JB, impervious to his tone, would very much like to know why she’s been summoned down here in the middle of the night.  Bradshaw tells her that Sid was blown to bits three hours earlier by a bunch of dynamite “wrapped in pink feminine wrapping paper.” that had presumably been delivered by a woman heard leaving in highheeled shoes. (Just to make sure you got the whole ‘suspect is a woman’ thing).

JB tries to explain that she’d only just met Sid recently, and that she’s a novelist. Bradshaw knows who she is, even read a couple of her books. Frankly they were a waste of his time.

That was unwise, Kananga.

That was unwise, Kananga.

Bradshaw  thinks it’s highly suspicious that JB came to visit someone she barely knew (but who was trying to steal her story idea), and left without alerting the night guard even when Jess points out the entirely unsuspicious reason – she left with Sid’s secretary. Kanaga will see about that!

On the way home, Gayle swears that she had nothing to do with the Great Explosion That Surprisingly Did Almost No Structural Damage; she was home alone writing. She hasn’t been in Hollywood long, she confides to JB, but she’s learned one thing: you’ve got to protect your fanny at all costs.

BUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA sorry.

BUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA sorry.

Gayle asks JB if she has an alibi for 8:45 and JB tells her she was soaking in a hot tub.

“Anyone with you?” Asks Gayle.

Word.

Word.

The next morning JB visits the set of Danger Doctor to find Avery has assumed the role of Bossman rather effortlessly. JB tries to ask him about the Great Explosion That Surprisingly Did Almost No Damage and in response he tells her to get off the studio grounds but before she can, Diane the “close personal friend” of Gary Patterson rushes over to tell her that Gary is hanging out in his trailer and would very much like to meet her.

Turns out Gary has a million dollar proposal for JB. No, not that kind, he wants her to get to work fixing the terrible scripts. In fact, he himself was working on polishing them up from 8:30 til 9:30 the night before. (See how smoothly he worked that in there?)

“Oh? Alone?” Asks JB.

“Well, no. The little lady was here with me.”

“Gary likes to bounce his ideas off of me.” Says Diane.

I feel like this episode has taken a turn...

I feel like this episode has taken a turn…

Excuse me just a sec…

Someone got into the chocolates a bit early this year...

Someone got into the chocolates a bit early this year…

Oh God. What’s happening? Oh right. So Avery turns up at the trailer eager to throw JB out but JB informs him that Gary has just offered her a job developing scripts and she’s just decided to accept. SUCKER.

JB is shown to her office by Frieda, who reveals she’s not exactly mourning for her late lamented boss. Jess asks her if she noticed anything unusual the day Sid died but Frieda remembers nothing except that she noticed that one of the file drawers had been rummaged through in between her leaving the office with JB and her arriving back after the Great Explosion That Surprisingly Did Almost No Damage. Jess asks her to see if anything was missing and goes to see her pal Avery who is tearing Bert and some other crew a new one. He is delighted to see JB and tells her how wonderful it is to have her on the show. Outside, while Bert drives off in his Jeep (I’m guessing this is important), JB bumps into Diane again, who begs her to take a look at the newest script and polish it. In response, JB asks why they lied about being together the night of the Great Explosion That Surprisingly Did Almost No Damage. Diane admits she left the set to go and get some medication for Gary from home, but that was it. JB urges her to tell Lieutenant Bradshaw, as she believes that while Bradshaw doesn’t have all the facts, he doesn’t seem likely to do anything impulsive.

Cut to Bradshaw trying to arrest Kate Hollander. Her minions think it will make for excellent press coverage but her secretary is outraged. Bradshaw won’t give up, until Kate informs him that she was in bed reading scripts. With her secretary. Who was taking notes. She is then interrupted by one of her minions informing her that USA Today wants to do a spread on her and she tells him to set it up. “Now, where were we?” She asks Bradshaw.

“I believe we were discussing dictation.” Says Bradshaw.

Dictation.

DIC. TATION.

DIC! TATION!

DIC! TATION!

Bloody hell I hope she solves this soon, I’m in serious danger of losing the plot completely. Back at JB’s office Gayle wanders in to say goodbye – she’s decided to chuck her TV writing career in for writing a novel. Bless. Meanwhile, Frieda has worked out what’s missing from the file she noticed open the night of the Great Explosion That Did Almost No Damage – the contract belonging to Brenda Blake. JB goes to confront her about it and Brenda pleads ignorance, until Bradshaw turns up with a warrant. After much bellyaching, Brenda finally admits to stealing her contract out of the drawer, but says that she had no motivation to kill Sid since he was meeting with the producer of the movie she was trying to get cast in the next day. She does however remember seeing the package on the table when she stole the contract.

Bradshaw is a bit miffed, but it’s okay! JB has worked it out! In the absence of proof, JB stages an elaborate plot involving Frieda, some lies and when that doesn’t work a fake kidnapping but she finally gets him to admit in the end.

 

 

 

Not gonna lie, I'm not sure I care.

Not gonna lie, I’m not sure I care.

Afterwards, Bradshaw grudgingly admits that she’s not much of a writer but she’d make a damn fine policeman. Whatever dude. Then, as JB is finally making her escape Kate Hollander reappears with an idea – the JB Fletcher Mystery Hour! A weekly show devoted to the crime busting adventures of a mystery writer!

JB tells her it’s the worst idea she’s ever heard. OH THE LOLZ. But never mind that, because Twitter has just informed me that Angela Lansbury is being made a Dame today. So, by the power vested in me by me I hearby declare April 15 to be World Angela Lansbury Day. Now go! Hurl sass around and be the fabulous Fletcherfans I know you all are!

Until next time!

DIC! TATION!

DIC! TATION!

S04E07 – If It’s Thursday, It Must Be Beverley

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This week Our Heroine is getting her hair done in a place that could accurately be described as my worst nightmare.

So. Much. Pink.

So. Much. Pink.

That delighted postman (previously seen as Lieutenant Casey in these two episodes) is George Tibbits, who delivers mail and New Hampshire lottery tickets which apparently pay out more than Maine ones. Jess confesses to having no luck gambling, but the other ladies are all up for it. If you know what I mean.

Hair did, JB goes off out into the world and runs into Seth, who is dropping his secretary off at the beauty parlour for her regular hair cut. Seth invites himself around to JB’s for dinner so he can cook a recipe he found in Frugal Cuisines of the World magazine. As they talk, they see Night Deputy Jonathan Martin pull up to collect his wife Audrey who immediately starts berating him for not letting her know he was out the front and for suggesting they go and get icecream. Seth comments that he wouldn’t wish the job of night deputy on his worst enemy…or the wife.

That night, Audrey pins her lottery ticket up on the corkboard, puts last week’s ticket in the losers box, abuses her husband for being a failure of life and bursts into tears when he gives her roses because Charlie Wilson used to give her gardenias and she should have married Charlie Wilson and she should have stayed in Boston. Pretty sure your husband agrees with you love.

Meanwhile over at Casa de JB, Seth is whipping up a culinary frenzy, despite Jessica’s scepticism and memories of the Chicken Veronique that resulted in a mild case of food poisoning. Just as Seth is putting the finishing touches on his masterpiece Amos turns up to return a book/case the joint for food. Under orders from JB Seth grudgingly allows Amos a spoonful. Amos loves it until he finds out calamari isn’t a fancy kind of chicken.

Poor Amos.

Poor Amos.

While Seth finishes off the last few touches, and puts the pie in the oven, JB gets a phone call from Flossy at the Sheriff’s office looking for Amos. No one can get a hold of Deputy Jonathan Martin, and shots have been heard from inside his house. Amos, Seth and JB go to investigate and find Audrey lying dead on the floor, gun in hand. While it appears to be suicide, JB can’t help thinking it doesn’t make sense – women don’t usually shoot themselves, they prefer pills. JB thinks it’s sad that there’s no cards or photos on the corkboard. Just an old shopping list and some receipts. Okay?

Jonathan arrives home to find them all there, and is surprisingly heartbroken. He confirms that they never locked the door, as Audrey thought Cabot Cove was so boring that nothing would ever happen, and that the gun she used was the spare he kept in the dresser upstairs. Amos begins to come round to the murder theory, and asks Jonathan where he’d been and why he didn’t answer his radio. He says that he went to rescue Eve Simpson’s cat that was stuck in a tree, and he turned the radio off so it wouldn’t startle the cat. Then he drove around, remembered the radio was off and turned it back on to hear the news. Amos tells him to take a few days off while they sort it out.

The next morning notes are compared at the beauty parlour. Ideal Malloy (not kidding, that’s her name) never considered killing herself when her husband left, Eve Simpson (owner of the wayward cat) thinks it’s a relief that at least she had her hair done before she did it, but the owner of the parlour, Loretta, has heard differently. She heard that Amos had taken Jonathan’s badge off him, which makes no sense to Ideal. What does Jonathan’s badge have anything to do with it? Amos cautiously wanders in on cue to ask them about Audrey’s behaviour the previous day but they all want to know if Amos thinks Jonathan really killed his wife (“with his badge?” Adds Ideal.) Amos doesn’t look like he’s enjoying himself.

Amos does not have a way with the ladies.

Amos does not have a way with the ladies.

Seth isn’t having the best day either, when JB drops by to return his pot. His secretary Beverley has called in sick for the first time in twenty years, the phone won’t stop ringing with people looking for her, and “What really scorches my slippers is that I can’t find my copy of New Hampshire Weekly.” He was stuck on the crossword, but luckily Our Heroine is there to tell him the answer. She’s about to leave Seth to his rage when Amos wanders in looking shellshocked. He tells JB that Eve Simpson confirmed what the logbook said; that the only call the previous night was about her cat. “About all I could make sense of all that caterwauling’.” Says Amos. “Women.” He adds.

f2

“Present company excluded ma’am!” Amos hastens to add.

SHE IS THE DANGER.

SHE IS THE DANGER.

JB’s next stop is to see her travel agent and fellow beauty parlour patron Phyllis, who is also the town travel agent. While they’re chatting JB learns that Eve Simpson’s trip to the south of France might now be with someone, and that back in the day Audrey Martin was friends with Phyllis’s cousin. Both of these things are probably important.

The next day (according to Our Heroine’s wardrobe change), JB is at home hard at work on her next novel when she gets a knock at the door. It’s Jonathan Martin, looking for JB’s help to clear his name, as long as she’s not too busy working.

And then we receive a lesson in context.

Deputy Martin: I’ve got just the cure……That better?

Our Heroine:  Oh….Oh my Goodness…Yes…Ooh…Just wonderful…Oh….My husband used to do this for me all the time…

Deputy Martin: That so?

Our Heroine: Yes that’s the very spot right there…Oh he had the most wonderful hands…

Deputy Martin: How’s that feel?

Oh my.

Get your minds out of the gutter.

Fortunately Jess is saved by the arrival of the mailman George, who she drags into her house. George is a bit taken aback to see Jonathan, and even more so when JB shoves them both out on to  the street.

Jonathan’s hands have made JB suspicious and she goes to look at the logbook again, which says that he was at Eve Simpson’s for an hour, then Jonathan claimed that he was driving for an hour and a half after that. If he was telling the truth, says JB. Amos doesn’t believe it. “But he has to be telling the truth! How can it take two and a half hours to get a cat out of a tree?”

JB examines the log book a bit more closely and notices that Eve Simpson’s cat had a habit of needing to be rescued every Tuesday.  JB then tells Amos about Phyllis’s news that Eve was looking for a second plane ticket for her trip to France.

“Kind of makes you wonder if it was the cat Jonathan was attending to…or the canary.” Says Amos.

Ohhhh, CAT.

Ohhhh. CAT.

JB and Amos go to ask Eve about this mysterious second person she’s travelling with, but Eve informs them that it’s her own business. Instead they ask her about her “cat” that needs “rescuing” on a regular basis, to which Eve replies “Yes, she’s a very bad cat, and the deputy seems to have a way with her.”

I think Amos is about to pass out

I think Amos is about to pass out

They go to confront Jonathan who admits that he was with Eve at the time his wife died. He didn’t mean for it to happen, it just did. That old chestnut. Later, JB and Amos are walking past the beauty parlour when Loretta spots them and tells them she’s decided to tell the truth about something. JB tells her it’s okay, that they know about Jonathan and Eve Simpson.

Loretta is scandalised. What? That’s old news! She’s talking about Ideal Malloy!

Did she live up to her name though?

Did she live up to her name though?

A quick check of the logbook confirms that Ideal Malloy had a habit of seeing prowlers in her garden on Monday nights. And by prowlers in the garden I think you know what I mean. While Amos bellyaches about how his deputy isn’t going to get away with this, and that he asked Ideal Malloy to the pictures last Monday and she said she had to wash her hair, JB has made a discovery, which she shares with Amos.

Life Lesson #54: THERE ARE MORE THAN TWO DAYS IN THE WEEK.

Phyllis Grant the travel agent admits that her dog didn’t actually run away every Wednesday. Amos is scandalised that she would take up with a married man, but she tells him that’s what made it perfect. Ideal admits to being Mondays but has an alibi for the murder – she was with Loretta and Coreen at the cinema at the time of the murder.

As you would expect, Seth Hazlitt has some thoughts on these new developments. “I know he’s supposed to service the town at night, but don’t you think that’s going a bit far?”

Amos has other issues. “Why him? What’s he got that I – that’s so special?”

“Perhaps he should will his body to Harvard medical school, maybe they can find out!” Chortles Amos.

They spot George the mailman, and Seth asks him about his copy of New Hampshire weekly, but George has nothing for him. Maybe it was never loaded onto the truck? JB asks Seth if Beverley was going to be in the office, Amos and she had some questions for her. Because if it’s Thursday…GEDDIT?

Beverley is not one to hide behind innuendo and hyperbole.

m2

n2

Who says romance is dead? Amos and Seth adjourn to the nearest coffee pot for a strong cup to settle their nerves, leaving JB to interview Beverley, who tells them that Jonathan was planning to leave his wife and be with her. He never actually said so, but a woman knows these things. With no help on offer from Amos and Seth, JB then asks Beverley where she was the morning after the murder, since she was late to work. Beverley informs them that she was making a casserole for Jonathan, and if Seth wants to fire her for being late once in twenty years then he didn’t need Jessica to do his dirty work for him. She was going out into the world to have some fun!

THIS IS THE BEST EPISODE EVER.

THIS IS THE BEST EPISODE EVER.

“No wonder she seemed so relaxed on Friday mornings.” Says Seth.

Meanwhile at Jonathan’s house, Eve Simpson has just made a chilling discovery.

Oh yes. Jonathan has been having his casserole and eating it too.

Oh yes. Jonathan has been having his casserole and eating it too.

Needless to say, the atmosphere is a little subdued down at the beauty parlour when JB and Amos roll in. Amos can’t handle it and asks JB to take the lead while he goes to read magazines in the corner. JB asks Loretta if she knows whether any of Jonathan’s women had acted like they’d been dumped, but Loretta can’t think of anyone. Amos takes a break from his magazine to notice Coreen the assistant acting suspicious so he decides to pay her a visit later that night.

Would it amaze you to learn she’s not alone?

q2

r2

To paraphrase one of my favourite movies, does this guy have chocolate flavoured nipples?

Jonathan swears he’d never been to Coreen’s until that night, and that she’d asked him to come and fix her screen door, because everyone at the beauty parlour said how wonderful Jonathan was…at fixing things.

Amos asks her where she was the night of the murder and she tells him she was at the cinema with Ideal Malloy. “Ah yes,” says JB. “And Loretta.”

Nope. Loretta was visiting her sister in Augusta.

A clue! Remember that time someone was murdered? Uising every ounce of self control remaining, Amos asks Jonathan if  he’d ever had a little something something going on with Loretta.

Jonathan nods. “My one big mistake.” Turns out Loretta was after him to leave his wife and be with her, and was relentless.

Poor, poor Amos.

Poor, poor Amos.

But when they go to see Loretta, the murder of Audrey Martin isn’t her secret. Secret botox injections from a night doctor are.

Just when all hope seems lost, JB catches sight of the lottery tickets stuck to the mirror. Guys! Remember that time they bought lottery tickets from New Hampshire, and then Seth didn’t get his copy of the New Hampshire Weekly? IT WAS ALL CONNECTED.

Fair enough then.

Fair enough then.

All those booty calls and it all came down to George the postman recognising Audrey’s winning numbers in the New Hampshire Weekly and wanting to retire.

This episode though. I think I need a stiff drink and a lie down.

Later gang!

Later gang!

S01E21 – Murder at the Oasis

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Apologies for the delay, Fletcherfans! It turns out the Murder, She Blogged typewriter is very much like Melbourne’s public transport system in that it freaks out when it gets hot.

This week Our Heroine is back on the road, this time catching up with an old school-friend who has tickets to her ex-husband’s tennis tournament. You know, that old story. I can’t imagine why he’s her ex though…

There’s a lot going on here…

Or maybe I can. In any case his name is Johnny Shannon, his kids hate him, and he has upset the local Mafia representative. I can’t imagine any of these being a problem…

It’s not all bad news though – he has his very own minion, who travels with him everywhere. An Amos to his Jessica, if you will.

For some reason, I’ve started humming ‘All The Single Ladies’.

Johnny and his jester-friend are on their way to meet JB and Peggy Shannon, who are reminiscing about their shared hatred of brussel sprouts while watching a John McEnroe wannabe spit the dummy out on the tennis court. Jess can’t help but notice that said dummy-spitting man is a bit of all right.

You know what I love about tennis? The double entendres.

They are soon joined by Johnny (the jester and the bodyguard/Hulk relegated to another table) and by Peggy’s daughter Terry, who doesn’t stick around long – she’s got a hot lunch date with He-Who-Thinks-He’s-John-Macenroe. It’s obvious she’s only doing it to spite her Dad, and has a great old time watching him get into a shoving match with El Dummy Spit. Only the convenient arrival of the local constable calms everyone down.

Later that night, Johnny’s jester comes down to his study to deliver a ‘glass of milk’ (actually, it looks like it is just milk…huh) but finds the door locked. While he bangs on the door, his son Mickey runs to find his sister – who is in her bedroom with El Dummy Spit. Nudge nudge wink wink say no more. Lou the friendly bodyguard/Hulk breaks the door down and they find Johnny more dead than ususal.

The next morning JB and Peggy go to comfort the recently bereaved. Except Terry, who’s gone to the tennis club to suggest that El Dummy Spit gets out of the country before the po-po start knocking on his door. At least I think that’s what she’s saying. I can’t hear her over her necklace.

Seriously though, what is that?

Back at the house, recently relocated from Chicago Lieutenant Barnes (previously only known as The Constable) informs Peggy, Mickey and JB that he’s on the case, since there is no homicide division. Mickey suggests that JB help him out, but JB humbly says that her occasionally exploits are grossly over-exaggerated. (Liar!). Lieutenant Barnes says he doesn’t mind though – JB has covered the subject of murder fairly well in her books, even if she isn’t always accurate.

For insulting her honour, JB considers punching him in the face.

He takes her down to the scene of the crime, where they quickly establish that there was no way someone could have snuck in via security. THE CALL KILLER CAME FROM INSIDE THE HOUSE! They are interrupted by Buster-the-Jester, who tells them that Lou is out on the patio trying to kill Mickey as payback for Mickey killing his father. Lieutenant Barnes deftly handles the situation by shoving Lou into the pool.

According to IMDB, you will know Lieutenant Barnes from such things as 30 Rock and Grey Gardens.

The reason for the confusion, it seems, is that Lou saw Mickey going into the den and obviously 2 + 2 = 5. Mickey explains that while he did go into the den he came out of it again, and at no point did he shoot anybody. I believe him – he’s starting to remind me of Grady.

Peggy comes running up to inform everyone that Mickey didn’t do it and admits to sneaking El Dummy Spit in through the service entrance. This is enough for Lieutenant Barnes, who demands to know where El Dummy Spit is. Peggy admits to giving him money to get out of town, but Lieutenant Barnes doesn’t give up that easily.

Our Heroine asks Lou where he was when Johnny got shot. Apparently Johnny told him to get lost, which is code for having a girl over according to Buster. Lou says that this is impossible, since he didn’t have a name to call down to the security gate.

Ah, says JB. Which is short for, “But what if it was someone the guard knew by sight? Someone who might have been married to Johnny once upon a time?”

Back at the tennis club, Peggy admits to ‘paying her ex-husband a visit’, if you know what I mean. She swears she didn’t kill him, and her children didn’t either. Jess apparently accepts this and talk turns to Johnny’s enemies, of which apparently he had a few of. Like Milo Valentine, the friendly neighbourhood Mafia guy.

Hanging out in Lieutenant Barnes’s office, JB sketches out her mob hitman theory, and he agrees. He seems convinced that El Dummy Spit is a tennis player by day and a mob hitman by night. Which is a genius set-up for a television show, and you’re welcome TV land.

Back at the house, Terry overhears Buster on the phone trying to get in touch with said Mr Valentine. SUSS.  JB arrives in a taxi (and says to the taxi driver “Thank you for a lovely ride!”). She goes to visit Terry who tells her about overhearing Buster on the phone to Mr Valentine. JB notices a video tape missing from Johnny’s collection and Terry says it’s from the camera over the billiard table. Johnny used to film himself ‘playing’ so that he could ‘correct’ his mistakes. I bet he did.

Lieutenant Barnes arrives, and wants to know what JB’s doing there.

“Taking care of business,” she says sweetly.

Seriously though, she’s the best.

Turns out Lieutenant Barnes just wants Mickey’s statement. They’ve found El Dummy Spit making a break for Mexico.

Having his ass busted on the border, El Dummy Spit is hauled back for questioning. He insists that he didn’t kill Johnny Shannon, and that Terry did. JB quietly suggests he might want a lawyer, and the interview is over. Peggy, Mickey and Terry head home, accompanied by JB who has some unfinished business to take care of.

Out on the patio, JB grills Buster on his phone call with Milo Valentine and he admits to calling, but only to make sure there was no hit out on him. This is just like The Sopranos, probably. Buster explains to Jess that Milo got Johnny started in show business, but when he got famous Johnny resented being told what to do. One night, to clear the air, Johnny had Milo over for a friendly game of pool.

Aha! That explains the missing tape! SEE HOW IT ALL COMES TOGETHER. JB has it all figured out. The killer had two assignments – kill Johnny and steal the tape. More than that, she knows who the killer is.

I’m glad she knows, because I didn’t see this one coming.

Sigh. Can we trust no one in this crazy world?

I liked the Lieutenant of Death, right up until he pointed a gun at JB and said “You’ve won a prize – a trip to oblivion!” It turns out he’s a cop by day, mob hitman by night. The opposite of Batman, if you will.

Before things get too out of control Jess hollers and her posse come running.

There you have it, Fletcherfans. Another case neatly tied up by our heroine. Stay tuned for the season finale next week!

Until then, dear reader.

See you next week!

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