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S10E11 – Northern Explosion

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Welcome to Canada, where JB is currently on the most inexplicable cross-country quest to get to a wedding in Vancouver.

Now I might just be a small-time country lawyer (I’m not), but it seems to me that getting from Cabot Cove to Vancouver would be a small matter of flying from Boston. Even if it’s just to Toronto to change planes. Or Chicago.

Apparently not though.

This is what happens when you let Phyllis Grant book your travel. #DeepCut

Inside Fletcher Force One JB is hard at work on her novel, while a random dude insists on talking to her. At length. About how he never did work out computers, but he’s a very smart man.

Spoiler alert: it isn’t Donald Trump

It turns out they are on their way to Dominion, which Google says is a real place in Nova Scotia, and is, in fact, the complete opposite direction to Vancouver. This flight better have been cheap.

When the pilot announces they will be hitting turbulence all the way to Dominion, Mr Chatterbox tells JB that Dominion has been having trouble with some local Indians who are trying to stop a mine from going ahead. This interests the other passenger on the plane, who is a member of the local tribe and wonders whether Mr Chatterbox might benefit from reading what’s underneath the headlines.

JB enjoys that little truth bomb immensely and says so via the magic of her laptop.

Remember when computers were a novelty and weren’t trying to take over our lives?

Down on ground level, things are getting heated between the miners and the local First Nation people. (Also someone nicked some dynamite at the start of this episode, this comes up later). Mine boss Rick Shipley and his sidekick Brian Wade aren’t having a bar of it, while the First Nation people are being led by local hot head George Quill. It’s only when George’s grandfather Joe steps in that the First Nation people back down and let the mine convoy through. The local constabulary rolls in in the form of Sgt Hilda Dupont, but the situation has calmed down. She can’t wait for George’s lawyer to get to town to sort it all out once and for all, and George says maybe, maybe not.

Jess rolls into town with her pilot promising to get her airborne first thing the next morning to make her connection at Dawson Forks. As she walks into the hotel Rick Shipley pulls up to ask the pilot (whose name is, of course, Buzz Berkeley) if there is anything for him. Buzz scowls and hands him a parcel before storming off. Apparently, Rick has started using Buzz’s competition after years of using Buzz or some such situation.

While the lawyer (whose name I should point out is Peter Henderson) is on the phone with his office, Mr Chatterbox is checking in and chatting with the receptionist Marie Comouche while some helpful clues just hang out on the counter.

Won’t lie, the first time I watched this episode I paid 0 attention to any of this, I was probably googling flights from Maine to Vancouver.

Before he departs, Mr Chatterbox, who it turns out is actually called Mr Macpherson and I’ve just realised is Deep Throat from The X Files and now my mind is blown, orders Jess to accept his dinner invitation but heroically Peter steps in to tell him that Jess already has dinner plans with him.

“Just trying to be friendly is all,” grumbles Mr Macpherson. UGH.

I think we’ve all been there though.

Peter asks Jess to dinner for real, but first drops by the mine to slap an injunction on Rick Shipley, preventing any activity on the mine for 7 days until the case gets heard in court. Rick asks him about the missing dynamite but it’s the first Peter has heard about it, and if Peter finds out Rick has been spreading gossip without proof there will be a lawsuit heading his way. Rick asks Peter if he really is helping the local community, after all, he had to move away to get a good job.

Jess takes herself down to the general store for some film and runs into Joe Quill for some of that Native Person Mysticism that this show freaking loves. George is also there hanging out and drawing. Martin storms in wanting to know more about the dynamite, and to beg Joe to keep everyone in line until after the hearing. Joe says welcome back, and George pops up to tell Peter the whole thing is pointless, the law doesn’t care about them and that he should just go back to Toronto. He storms outside and gets into a punchup with Rick and Brian which only ends when JB wanders out to see if there are any murders that need solving.

Later that afternoon Peter goes out for a stroll and runs into Hilda Dupont, who can’t believe Peter is back or how good he looks. They adjourn inside for a cup of coffee to reminisce and flirt outrageously. Down at the general store, Shipley and Joe Quill yell at each other a bit about the future of the town before Shipley returns to the mine. Oddly enough he has a meeting with Hamish Macpherson, who has a tale to tell of a bank robber who went missing after a heist in Ottawa in which a cop was killed and half a million bucks got pinched. There’s a reward out for the missing robber but Macpherson thinks there’s more money in blackmailing the missing thief, as he wasn’t able to spend the money he stole and the bank robber would probably be very interest in keeping his identity quiet.

Surprise! Hamish Macpherson is a newly retired cop and Shipley is a bank robber.

Shipley arranges to meet Macpherson at his place at 10pm that night, Shipley even gives his car to McPherson when he starts muttering about needing transportation for a meeting that late. Macpherson also tells Shipley that if something should happen to him, his wife has all the information too and if something should happen to her, then provisions have been made.

At dinner that night, Peter and Jess chat about the case, and how Peter is struggling in the city. Apparently, Joe Quill raised him after his mother died on account of his real father is an alcoholic. Being back has kicked up all sorts of things for him. (Meanwhile JB’s plane still hasn’t been fixed and the wedding is at 4pm the next day)

Later that night, Macpherson comes to see Shipley and is blown up after a shadowy figure carelessly on purpose leaves some dynamite under a bridge.

Gilda arrives on the scene and takes charge. Shipley tells her that Macpherson was a mining tool salesman that he had arranged to meet, but he’d gone to check on the equipment at the mine first. He is adamant the explosion was meant for him on account of he leant his truck out of the kindness of his heart, and more than that it was defs George Quill behind it all.

The next day Jess gets the bad news that the plane still isn’t ready, which gives her plenty of time to answer Hilda’s questions about Macpherson, not that JB knows much. She does mention the briefcase, but that has yet to be found. Hilda tells her that it turns out Macpherson was a retired cop, so lord knows what he was doing in Dominion.

Hilda goes to see Peter and Joe, who are wrapping up a tribal council meeting, and asks them where George is, she has questions. Back at the hotel Jess gets the good news that the plane is fixed when a phone call comes in from Hilda requesting her attendance at the police station.

Imagine a TV show where a psychic travel agent purposefully redirects her cop client to solve murders instead of go on holidays. Yeah. Get to work television.

Jess tells Hilda what she knows about the fight between George Quill and Shipley and Brian Wade, which Hilda says matches what they told her. She has no choice but to hold George on suspicion of murdering Hamish Macpherson, killed because George thought it was Shipley. Jess thinks that none of it makes sense, and also where is Hamish’s briefcase? Hilda tells her not to worry about it, she’ll drive Jess to the plane. Jess wonders if they could just pop round the crime scene on the way…

A trip to the crime scene yields nothing more than a fleck of yellow enamel, but a call comes in from one of Hilda’s colleagues to inform her that they have found the missing dynamite stolen from the start of the episode, buried under George’s cabin. And there are three sticks missing.

George tells them that they must have been missing to begin with, he didn’t count the dynamite when he stole it, he just stole it to stop the mine from going ahead. When Hilda tries to get in touch with Shipley to confirm, Brian tells her he can’t return her call on account of he’s just turned up dead.

On a completely unrelated topic, I once had a conversation with my friend Owen about which Hogwarts House Jessica Fletcher would be in, and guys she is 100% Slytherin. She is missing a wedding to make sure everyone knows that a murder doesn’t get solved unless she solves it. BOSS MODE.

(Also I’m 100% Ravenclaw, just in case any of you were wondering).

Hilda, Peter and JB head to Shipley’s office where it appears he has packed a bag before killing himself. Buzz phones in to see if Shipley is still catching the plane to Dawson Forks, making them all suspect that Shipley did not in fact kill himself. Jess thinks they need to find out more about Hamish Macpherson, and quickly.

While Jessica and Peter chat to Joe in the general store, Hilda goes to work and soon finds out that Shipley was the bank robber and that’s why Hamish Macpherson was in town. She tells them she’s stumped, which makes Jess realise who the killer is and I’m sorry guys I’ve watched this twice and I still don’t get it.

If you worked this out then get to work building a warp drive because you are clearly a genius.

So that is Marie the hotel receptionist, who was married to the cop who was killed in the bank robbery. Presumably she killed Macpherson because she thought he was Shipley, and then she killed Shipley because he was Shipley. Jess worked it all out because of a conversation she overheard Marie having about blowing up tree stumps.

I don’t even know. Anyway, I just discovered there’s a teaser trailer for the Han Solo movie, guys I gotta go.

Later gang!

 

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S10E10 – Murder in White

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London! Home of Dangermouse Emma Macgill, not that that really matters because she’s not in this episode either.

The point is, it’s going to be very hot in Melbourne today, but also there is a play happening in London based on one of Our Heroine’s novels, Murder in White. The play’s star, Glenda Highsmith, is unhappy with the script that Mae Shaughnessy (aka Anna Meara, aka Ben Stiller’s Mum) has put together and is threatening to walk off the stage unless Mae agrees to meet with Jessica. Mae doesn’t do collaborations but agrees to meet with her, conceding Jessica can write. Patricia informs producer and general sleazebag Martin Kramer that she has someone meeting JB at the airport and storms out.

While JB takes the scenic route from Heathrow to her hotel…

Sidenote: I love summer, but this is ridiculous. I am basically hugging my fan.

Martin Kramer decides to demonstrate his douchbaggery prowess by calling the director Peter Drew aside and telling him that everything sucks and he needs to fire one of the actors, specifically the one that Peter chose for the role in the first place, Franklin Smith. Meanwhile, a shady dude skulks around backstage, such is the tradition of the theatre. Martin sidles up to the shady dude, who it transpires is a private detective Martin has hired to look into Glenda’s past and more specifically her relationship with the 17th Earl of Glenhaven. The detective, Malcolm Brooker, tells Martin that as it so happens the Earl’s family are looking into her as well but they don’t know much either, and also Martin owes him three hundred quid or there’ll be trouble. Martin tells him to add another name to his list – JB Fletcher, who went to school with Glenda and might know a thing or two.

Martin also takes himself over to see JB at her hotel, to give her a friendly word but JB ain’t got time for it. She’s here to help Glenda and if that helps him and the production then that’s great but she’s already running late so ta-ta for now.

JB is met by Edward St Cloud, Glenda’s lawyer, who takes her out to Glenda’s estate. I’m not gonna lie, I have more questions about the driver.

MOUSTACHE MAN DOES NOT SLEEP. MOUSTACHE MAN WAITS.

As they drive Edward explains that the production is in a whole lot of trouble but he’s not sure what can legally be done. Jess explains she met Glenda on her first trip to London and they have been friends ever since. Edward wonders if she knows Brett Dillion, the young man who lives with Glenda, but Jess knows nothing.

Jessica arrives at Glenda’s estate and is immediately introduced to Brett. He wanders off to look at the garden and takes Edward with him leaving Glenda and JB to catch up over tea. Jess has seen the script for the play and thinks Mae is out of her depth but Glenda’s putting all the blame on Martin who is only in it for the money. Jess thinks Glenda should just cut and run but Glenda is adamant the play can work. She also wants the money for Brett so he can keep the estate after she goes. Jess says she’ll do whatever she can but she has to get back to London. Before she goes, Brett asks her help getting present for Glenda’s birthday and JB says he should pick it out himself. but defs sapphires.

Back at the theatre, Mae says she will do anything to help save the production but she does not collaborate. Jessica tells her she has no interest in writing a play, but she can help Mae capture what the play is about on account of she wrote it. Jessica thought that the whole production was Martin’s idea, but Mae tells her she was the one who took the book to Glenda.

Later that night, while Franklin drowns his sorrows about his imminent departure from the production and his girlfriend and co-star Sally Briggs tries to console him, Jessica is shutting down her laptop for the night when she gets a call from Malcolm Brooker. He wants to know everything she knows about the Earl of Glenhaven or Brett Dillion, but she tells him she knows nothing and if she did she wouldn’t tell, k thx bai.

Back at the bar Edward reports to Martin that the meeting between Mae and JB was a success and he’s welcome. He also mentions Malcolm Brooker has been lurking around but Martin knows absolutely nothing about that.

Anna Meara’s face though.

JB meets the other star of the show, Lawson Childress (aka Ian Ogilvy, aka Not Quite Rex Manning, seen in many other episodes) who wants her help picking out a murder weapon. Down in the basement Jess gets to work looking for a murder weapon while Lawson quietly takes a glug of his whiskey he has stashed down there. JB is unimpressed, and Lawson asks her if she knows that Glenda only agreed to do the play if he played Harrington. They return upstairs, and someone says something about a boiler but I wasn’t paying attention because my apartment is about 112 degrees.

The rehearsal wraps up and everyone heads out into the rainy night. Glenda finds Lawson drinking alone on the stairs and they reminisce about their short relationship ten years earlier. Lawson’s worried about Malcolm Brooker sniffing around again but Glenda tells him not to worry, she can take care of herself.

Mae discovers she’s forgotten her raincoat, and so she and Jess head downstairs to get one from the prop room. Meanwhile Sally Briggs tries to plead Franklin’s case to Martin who suggests she should sleep with him to secure Franklin’s role. HASHTAG DOUCHNOZZLE.

Sally storms out (YOU GO GIRL)

Later, everyone adjourns to the pub to debrief. Franklin tries to get Sally to explain why she’s so upset, but she just rushes out. Brett on the other hand is delighted with how much better Glenda looks. They both leave, along with Mae. Jess stays to finish her coffee and has a quick chat with Peter Drew about how well the play is going, and how Peter thinks Martin is still messing with Glenda somehow when Martin himself appears. Peter quickly excuses himself and Martin sets to work telling Jessica how she’s saved the play when a phone call comes for Martin and he tells Jess he’s terribly sorry but some unexpected business has come up. (He’s delighted whoever is on the phone has changed their mind).

How indeed.

Martin returns to the theatre where he is promptly stabbed. Tough break.

The next morning, Detective Inspector Ellen Jarvis is summoned to the scene and quickly boots JB out, but not before Jessica notices a missing raincoat, a missing wig, and a weird smell. Jess obeys, but goes on her own investigative hunt, where she works out that Glenda had a child out of wedlock with the 17th Earl of Glenhaven, a child called Bret. The Earl is dying, and so his family are sniffing around as they didn’t buy Glenda’s story that she miscarried the child before she married the Earl. I think that’s what happened. My brain is melting.

Jess visits DI Jarvis at work, and learns that the only prints on the murder weapon were hers (awks) and that  Brooker was on Martin’s payroll. Back at the theatre, Jess runs into Brooker who explains he was at the theatre the night of the murder, and saw a blonde woman stab Martin. The police turn up at that point so Brooker legs it, but the police have eyes on another prize – they are convinced Glenda killed Martin.

But never mind all that, because JB knows who the killer is, and a quick trip to the theatre basement with Sally confirms it.

Except what?

WHO????

That’s right kids. The character that I’ve not noticed in two viewings of this episode was the killer because he wanted to save Sally from Martin. Or something. I literally have no idea who he is apart from he’s apparently the stage manager.

I don’t even. I can’t go on. I’m going to go sleep in the bathtub.

Later gang!

S10E07 – A Killing In Cork

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Our Heroine is back in leprechaun country and is receiving a concise history of everything that’s going on with her friend Fiona Griffith from local gossip Siobhan Kennedy – Fiona’s husband is dead, her son Sean is running the woollen mill (as seen by a frankly Wonka style opening montage except wool is not delicious and chocolate is), her other son Patrick buggered off to America a long time ago and her husband’s cousin Ambrose is trying to take over the business and move the factory to Sligo, a town I once passed through on a bus. Hashtag fun fact.

I think she might be rethinking this whole trip

Over at said factory, (in a part of Ireland where the accents range from Swedish to Indian), Sean is preparing for battle with factory manager type person Dennis Moylan. The evil Ambrose Griffith is on his way and is currently tailgating Siobhan and JB until they get out of his way.

Preach.

Said car arrives at the woollen mills, and Ambrose orders his wife to wait in the car with the driver.

(And also a person in her own right obviously, but hey fun fact!)

Back on the road, Siobhan stops to pick up local drunk poet Billy Mahaffy who informs JB that Robert Griffith was actually murdered. Siobhan dismisses this as total nonsense and drops Billy at the pub. Later, Fiona explains to JB that Billy drunkenly walked in front of a bus one night and spent a year in the hospital, and hasn’t been the same since.

Over tea, Fiona and JB catch up on all the gossip, such as how Robert got interested in stonemasoning before he died, and how he had finally started to let go of the business. It was a terrible Alannis Morrisette level irony that his interest in stone masonry led to his death when a piece of the church fell off and landed on him.

Down at the pub Ambrose, Mrs Griffith and the driver arrive to check in to their rooms. Ambrose exchanges LOOKS with a guy sitting a the bar with a pint and a book on birdwatching but quickly reveals himself to be a Fake Twitcher when Billy Mahaffy asks him about birds he’s seen.

JB gets a tour of the woollen mill from Sean who leaves her in Dennis’s company to pick out a blanket. Dennis is furious that Sean didn’t show Ambrose financial reports – he seems to be all for moving the factory for some reason. JB’s next stop is the church, where Father Timothy offers up the parish computer records if she can’t find any trace of her Macgill relatives in the graveyard.

I would have laughed SO hard if it was Grady.

The girl leaps up, announces the leprechaun is coming (she calls it something else but I’m tired and editorialising) and runs away. Later that night, after Jess and Father Timothy discuss what poisons are the best for murder, Fiona shows Jess a picture of the leprechaun in question, known for never taking his pipe out of his mouth, and explains that the girl is Una O’Reilly. The conversation is interrupted first by Sean and Ambrose blueing over the business, then by the sudden arrival of Patrick Griffith who pops in to announce he has a thought or two about Ambrose taking over the business. Ambrose tells him he has no say, his father disowned him, he has no shares in the business.

The next day Patrick gives Jessica a lift into town and explains that he left after getting sick of the way his father treated him. He went off to university, received mysterious money orders into his bank account every month from an unknown benefactor, and then once he heard Robert had died decided to come home. He apologises for his behaviour the previous night, saying he could have waited an hour before teeing off on Ambrose.

ALWAYS.

Down by the lake, Ambrose/Pete Sampras’s wife Emily starts making out with the chauffeur while Fake Twitcher Guy takes photos. Gee, I wonder how that’s going to end up. Over at the mills Ambrose, Patrick and Sean yell at each other for awhile, which ends with Ambrose announcing Robert Griffith agreed to the move and producing paperwork showing the board appointing him emperor of the woollen mills. Patrick and Sean storm out. Ambrose tells Dennis if he keeps his mouth shut and does his job he might have a future with the company.

Ambrose is on fire. After properly enraging his entire family, he next drops a stack of incriminating photos on Emily and tells her she’s done and there’s no alimony in her future. He skulks off and she goes straight to the phone – she needs to see whoever is on the other end of the line immediately.

There’s only one way to resolve all of this dramatic tension.

FIRST RULE OF RIVERDANCE FIGHT CLUB IS THAT YOU DO NOT TALK ABOUT RIVERDANCE FIGHT CLUB UNLESS IT’S IN A BAD IRISH ACCENT.

While the Riverdancers fight to the death, Fiona wonders where Patrick has disappeared to and Emily arrives with Dennis Moylan. Ambrose gets a message from the friendly bartender and leaves under the eagle eye of his now-sacked chauffeur, and Siobhan waits in a dark wood, for Patrick as it turns out. Patrick ain’t got time to chat though and is off to do a thing. The chauffeur guy turns up there and watches Patrick and Siobhan wander off in different directions.

Father Timothy offers jetlagged JB a lift home while down at the church Ambrose is waiting for his mysterious note-writer to turn up. He gets freaked out when he sees Una O’Reilly singing at him through a window, then she runs away. He turns around and finds the bell rope swinging. He calls out, cops a garrotte around the neck and starts frantically pulling on the bell rope.

Back at the pub JB hears the church bells and asks if they always ring at ten o’clock. Father Timothy panics, as the church should be locked tight and there’s money in the safe so he grabs Jess and they jet over to the church to find Ambrose dead on the ground, the bell rope still swaying.

The next day the 5-0 roll in.

It’s the token Irish guy who isn’t Irish!

Sergeant Boyle, much to Jessica’s apparent irritation, seems to have the matter in hand. He is not terribly moved by Jessica’s knowledge that the death occurred at 10:04pm, or that she saw Ambrose receive a message from the bartender, or that the fact that the window was smashed suggests that the killer broke into the church and let Ambrose in. After he leaves, Jessica spots a shard of glass outside on the ground and some black ash that someone tried to sweep up. She asks Father Timothy if someone had swept in there that day but he thinks not. He gives her a list of people who have keys to the church and it’s basically everyone.

Speaking of everyone, they all gather at Fiona’s house to pay their respects to the newly widowed Mrs Griffith. Dennis is extra polite, and Billy Mahaffy wonders if that means the woollen mills are going to move to some land Dennis owns, and Dennis tells him to lay off the booze.

Down at the mill, Patrick is delighted to inform Sean that the directors have voted to keep Sean in charge and to move in whatever direction he sees fit. Sean is delighted but worried about Sergeant Boyle. He wants to know if Patrick killed Ambrose so Sean can help cover it up. Patrick is furious and storms out.

Jess is off picking flowers, seemingly not needed in this investigation.

If there was a murder, yo she’ll solve it…check out the hook while Doc Hazlitt revolves it (guys it’s five thirty in the morning I might have broken myself)

Dennis Moylan drops past to tell her that her brand new rug will be ready in the morning and departs. Siobhan rushes up to tell Jessica that Sergeant Boyle is convinced Patrick murdered Ambrose. She admits to JB she’d known Patrick for a while, he had come back to town for a day to meet someone and she had met him in the pub that night and they were casually hooking up. The night of the murder he was supposed to meet her but didn’t and he was always asking questions about the mill, but he totes didn’t kill Ambrose.

After some digging around in the parish records, Jess wanders the graveyard and finds Una communing with the fairies. Jess tries to find out more about the leprechaun but Una runs away. Jess heads back to Fiona’s just in time to see Patrick being hauled off in cuffs by Sergeant Boyle.

Jess takes Fiona for a walk to get the truth out of her. It turns out Patrick isn’t Robert’s son, he’s Billy Mahaffey’s. He went to Belfast and disappeared/got hit by a bus and so Fiona married Robert. He knew Patrick wasn’t his so he treated him badly. Fiona’s terrified Sergeant Boyle will find out and think Patrick killed both of them but JB thinks she’s on to something.

(Spoiler alert: I only just now realised this is basically the cast of the Celtic Riddle telemovie).

JB goes to see Patrick in jail, and he admits he came back to town to find out who’d been sending money orders. Billy told him he was his real father the day Robert died. He thought Billy had killed Ambrose Griffith and tried to make it look like a robbery. Sergeant Boyle pops in to call time on visiting hours and starts fiddling with a button. This seals the deal for Jessica and that night she lays a trap for the killer.

*May not actually be a leprechaun

Won’t lie, nailed this one about ten minutes in. Dennis wanted the factory moved to his land and killed anyone who said no, basically. There was a lost button, Jess had it all worked out, it was fine.

And that’s all she wrote, for a couple of weeks. Santa Claus is coming to town, you guys! But I’ll be back in a couple of weeks.

Merry Festivus Fletcherfans!

S10E06 – Bloodlines

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If anyone tells you Horses by Daryl Braithwaite isn’t Australia’s national anthem they’re a filthy liar

JB is in Virginia hanging out at her pal Matt Cleveland’s place, where she is writing a new book set in horse racing land. Matt is a horse trainer currently training celebri-horse Swift Prince, and so knows a thing or two about such things. His daughter Jill just happens to be the jockey on board so you know there’s that too. Also he’s Mickey Rooney.

Naww. 

Matt is so excited with the Prince’s hot lap that he puts a call in to two of the owners, Catherine Noble and Wally Hampton. They are stoked with the Prince’s time and assure Matt that they will convince the third owner Lloyd Mentone that the hose must race that weekend.

Spoiler alert: this entire episode is basically this:

I don’t understand how Mickey Rooney isn’t playing an old retired jockey actually.

Anyway.

Jess, Matt and Jill head back to Matt’s cottage, while up at the big house Catherine Noble (aka Tippi Hendren) informs her daughter Tracey that Swift Prince will be racing on the weekend. Tracey is delighted, she needs the prize money to fund another 100 guests for her upcoming wedding to Wally’s son Paul. UGH. Catherine tells her the money isn’t going to cover her debts, they are inches away from losing the farm completely, and are counting on Paul approving a bank loan.

That afternoon, Lloyd Mentone is furious to discover that his co-owners have entered the horse in a race when he was focussed on stud fees. Apparently, the horse was recovering from a serious injury and Lloyd thinks it’s a big risk, but he’s overridden. It also turns out that Paul Hampton and Jill once had a thing before he got talked into falling in love with Tracey. Paul looks miserable and later refuses to stay for a drink with his father, who wonders what’s wrong. Paul asks him what he wants, and Wally says for Paul to quit the bank and return to managing the stud, but he’d settle for his audit.

Meanwhile, JB is back at work on her book when she gets a visit from Lloyd, who tells her he grew up watching races from the tower at Saratoga (righto mate) and that he’s concerned about Swift Prince’s race. JB tells him she’s sure Matt and the others know what they’re doing, also the tower at Saratoga wasn’t built when Lloyd was growing up.

Ouch. Burn!

Getting nowhere with JB, Lloyd’s next stop is to see assistant trainer Gus Tardio aka Don Swayze as if you couldn’t tell.

Like Hungry Eyes, except not at all.

Gus is moping because Matt got made head trainer over him. Lloyd orders Gus back to work, and sober since that’s what he’s paying him for. Gus returns back to the stable to find life has pretty much gone on without him and Matt sacks him for being a douche.

Tracey visits Paul at work, where he’s trying to secure her mother’s loan and says she can’t wait until the wedding so he can quit his silly banking job and run the stables. Paul tells her he happens to like his banking job but she says that’s only because his father doesn’t.

Later that night JB is slaving away over her laptop when she hears bangs and crashes from the stable. She rushes to see and finds Matt staggering around after copping a whack on the head. Jill helps him to stand while JB carefully extracts a syringe from a pile of hay. OH YOU GUYS IT’S A NEEDLE IN A HAYSTACK.

While the vet has Swift Prince tested for performance-enhancing drugs, Sheriff Clyde Benson wants to know who might have been behind it. The consensus is Gus, but JB can’t see what his motive is and Wally Hampton agrees. Clyde thinks it’s more likely that one of the horse’s connections might have done it, but he’ll swing by Gus’s and see. Wally begs him to keep it quiet until they know if the horse was actually injected and Clyde says he’s happy to do them a favour as long as it’s within the law.

Alright Clyde, calm down.

The next day Catherine gets a call to say that Swift Prince is all clear, and there was much rejoicing by Tracey and by JB for wildly different reasons. Down at the bank, Paul gets a visit from Lloyd who wants Paul to convince Catherine to scratch the horse from the race, or else some finance peeps are going to find out that Catherine lied on her loan application and Paul approved it. Paul throws him out.

Over at the farm, Catherine confronts Matt (who turns out used to work for her before he worked for Wally) and says she wants a more experienced jockey on the horse because SHE NEEDS THE MONEY OMG WEDDINGS DON’T PAY FOR THEMSELVES AND TRACEY IS A PRINCESS etc etc. Matt tells her it’s in his contract – he trains, he picks the jockey. Later that afternoon he tells JB he has a plan for shaving 3 seconds off Swift Prince’s time and waves a videotape around.

That night, Jill runs into Paul and they go get dinner together. JB finds Matt rushing out the door, telling her he’ll explain later. Jess hears some car doors slam, and gets back to work. As a car drives way, Gus appears out of the bushes, like this but in reverse.

Tracey turns up a while later looking for Paul, but Jess says he’s been gone about an hour so they decide to have dinner together instead. On their way into town, they find Matt’s truck parked on the side of the road, and Matt dead on the ground.

BASTARDS KILLED MICKEY ROONEY THIS WILL NOT STAND.

Clyde comes to the house to take statements, but he’s fairly convinced Matt was killed by a hobo in a robbery gone wrong. Jess thinks this is highly unlikely, and doubly so when Clyde tells her there was no sign of the videotape Matt had been waving around.

After checking in with Catherine, who it turns out was supposed to meet Matt with Wally but he never showed, Jess goes to search Matt’s office for the tape, but it’s gone. She does, however, find the envelope and puts a call in to the offices of Sportrack to find out what Matt had requested. She also finds a notepad, and with the classic pencil rub finds VICTOR WY etched onto the pad. Fun fact, WY apparently means Wyoming. Victor means Victor I guess.

Sportstrack is a surprisingly efficient company, and they deliver another copy of the tape to Jess the next day. She watches it with Jill, but they don’t know why Matt was so interested in it. Catherine and Wally come over and tell Jill they’re getting another jockey for the race.  Down at the bank, Lloyd pops in for a chat with Paul, but Paul tears up Catherine’s loan contract and tells him to do his worst. Paul quits.

Paul is getting his groove back completely, his next stop is to see Catherine but instead, he finds Tracey who accuses him of ignoring her to spend time with Jill, so he calls off the wedding. YOU GO BOYFRIEND.

Drunk on his own power, Paul heads down to the racetrack to wish Catherine and Wally well for the race the following day, but Catherine tells him to go to hell. Paul and Jill watch the substitute jockey fail completely with Swift Prince. Paul tells Jill to let Catherine come to her and to say maybe at least once. Paul, you’re alright.

Meanwhile, Jess is still trying to catch a murderer. She has a chat with Clyde who is convinced Gus is guilty, but when he shows her the wrong piece of paper she suddenly realises why Matt had been so excited the night he died. They rush over to the racetrack just in time to catch Lloyd about to inject Swift Prince, who isn’t Swift Prince at all but a horse called Victor Way that Lloyd swapped so that he could make more money or some such business. Victor Way was going to make money as a stud horse, the real Swift Prince was off making money in South America.

But he didn’t kill Matt.

UNSURPRISED

Trust me on this, it’s got to do with car doors and Tracey running into Matt as he was about to tell her mother and worrying that the scandal would put an end to her wedding.

Whatevs. The important thing is, Jill wins the race on Victory Way and there’s champagne for everyone.

Later gang!

 

S10E04 – The Phantom Killer

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It’s a sunny day in the Big Apple and the editor of Follies Magazine, Dean Richards, is having a bit of a day. His finance manager, Carter Drummond, has just informed him that the bank isn’t giving him another loan, he just got blasted over the phone by literary agent Gary Manning about his client Ben Forman’s upcoming profile on JB Fletcher, and his assistant Ellen Harper has just shown him some photos that suck.

Some top-notch exposition right there.

Across town, the profile piece on JB Fletcher is going well.

I mean if anyone’s going to solve it…

Unfortunately what with Ben’s constant crashing bumping and spilling things the interview has to be cut short as Jess has Business. Instead Ben decides he’ll follow JB around the next day.

Jess heads off to her lunch meeting, which happens to be with Dean Richards and his lady friend Kathryn Schofield, and assures Dean that the profile is going a treat and that Ben is adorable. Kathryn goes off to her photo shoot leaving Dean and Jess to throwback cocktails until local media mogul Harrison Kane pops up.

Alan Thicke = 50% responsible for the existence of Robin Thicke who is 100% responsible for Blurred Lines a song I’m still angry about. My vendettas are complicated and last ages.

“Been a long time!” He says to JB.

JB is in smackdown mode.

Turns out Harrison isn’t there to see JB, he just wants to remind Dean that if he doesn’t accept Harrison’s bid for the magazine Harrison will just run the magazine out of business. He sashays away, and JB explains to Dean that a year earlier Harrison was shopping around a movie option for one of JB’s books that he didn’t have rights to and did such a bad job that by the time a legitimate producer wanted the rights the whole thing was cactus.

Meanwhile, Ben is kicking back relaxing all cool shooting some bball outside after school at his house with his friend/raging crush Abby Peters, who is rehearsing for an audition that afternoon. She thinks she’d be a big success if she had an agent like Ben so he gives his agent a call, and tells Abby that she should call him that afternoon. Abby’s boyfriend Dave picks her up and tells her he hopes she’s learned her lines this time.

Jesus Dave, calm down.

After they leave Ben gets a phone call from Harrison Kane, who is rather impressed with Ben’s screenplay and wants to turn it into a movie, but he thinks Ben should get a different agent – Gary Manion is demanding 100K for the rights to it. Ben says he’ll see what he can do, and suggests Abby for one of the roles. Harrison tells him to have her people call his people to sort it out.

Harrison hangs up. Kathryn Schofield is disinterestedly reading a magazine on his couch.

The next day Ben manages to get his last bits of interview from Jess as she races about the place. As she jumps into a taxi, she gives him a free word of advice – keep an eye on his script, and his wallet, around Harrison Kane.

Word must get back to Gary Manion as he puts a ferocious call into Harrison Kane, livid that Kane has shopped around scripts he doesn’t have the rights to. Harrison can’t get a word in. Manion says it’s 100K or nothing, and there’ll be hell to pay if he shops the script around or does one of his famous scope’n’gropes on Abby Peters.

*Coughs* Relevant *Coughs*

Manion hangs up on Kane, and there’s a knock on the door. It’s Carter Drummond, begging Harrison not to rescind his offer. Kane tells him too late, he’s going to destroy Follies Magazine and everyone involved in it, and to get the hell out. Carter departs, leaving Kane with a letter from his lawyers. Something about financial records which I’m sure is important.

Meanwhile, Kathryn is hard at work going about her model business, while a frustrated photographer called Hans bemoans her lack of interest. Dean calls a wrap and orders Hans to deliver some photos by 10am the next morning.

Sidenote: Uma Thurman’s Thanksgiving post on Insta was freaking amazing.

The above goes the way you expect these things to go. Ben arrives just to hear banging and crashing, Abby shouting “NO!” and then sees her run out of the room and into the elevator. He chases her but she flees into a taxi and disappears into the traffic. Meanwhile, room service arrives at Kane’s hotel room to find Kane dead in the bathtub with a hair dryer.

NYPD’s finest detective, Stan Zbornak Artie Gelber is naturally assigned the case and pops round JB’s house for a statement and a chat, as Jessica’s name appears in Harrison Kane’s little black book. JB confirms that she and Dean saw Kane at the restaurant two days ago, and that she and Kane didn’t have the best relationship. Artie wants to make this quick, he’s got reservations in the Catskills etc etc

10 points for that shirt though.

Ben Forman, who was at JB’s going over his draft of the profile piece, makes to leave but Artie has questions for him too.  Jess asks him if they have any suspects and Artie tells her half the world had it in for Harrison Kane. They do know that at some point the previous night Kane had a visitor from someone who liked cigars and bourbon but that they hadn’t ID’d them yet.

Down at Follies HQ Dean and Gary are getting into it over the phone, ending in Gary telling Dean to treat Ben with more respect or he walks, and Dean telling Gary if he tries to extort more money out of him for Ben they are all finished. Carter the finance guy is there too, freaking out after Harrison’s untimely demise – with him dead, the banks think Follies have no more money, but Dean says he’s got some leads.

Jess is summoned down to the precinct when her fingerprints turn up on a manuscript, but it turns out to be hers – the one Kane was shopping around without permission the previous year. Detective Henderson pops his head in to say they still hadn’t found Gary Manion, and that there were still some prints they hadn’t identified. Artie apologises for dragging Jessica into it and she tells him for what it’s worth she was home alone at the time of the murder.

Out in the street, Carter the finance guy and Ellen the assistant at Follies trade barbs. Ellen is meant to be spying on Dean for Carter, which she initially agreed to when Dean started up with Kathryn but now she wants out and she doesn’t care if Carter tells Dean she was spying for him.

Back at home Jess gets a phone call from Dean asking if she’s heard from Gary Manion or from Ben – he’s gone AWOL and hasn’t submitted his profile on JB. Jess tells him she’ll get right on it, and calls the phone company pretending to be Gary Manion’s secretary. Praise be for lax security.

And now lets take a moment to appreciate how 90s this actually is:

I can’t even.

Jess is hot on the trail of Garry Manion and heads down to his office, where she first runs into Abby Peters and then Artie and Detective Henderson, the latter of which elegantly breaks into the office. There’s no sign of Manion inside, but JB has a sneaking suspicion she knows where to find him.

They head over to Ben’s house, and find Garry on the phone, issuing more ultimatums.

YOU GUYS BEN WAS HIS OWN AGENT ALL ALONG *cue cheesy should have known face at camera*

Artie puts Ben under arrest and they all cruise down to the precinct. While Artie wanders around congratulating himself Ben explains to Jess that Garry Manion was a creation borne out of necessity – editors wouldn’t read his work unless he had an agent and agents wouldn’t look at his work unless he’d already sold something. So, he became Garry Manion.

Preach.

Artie pops back in and confirms that Ben’s prints are all over everything plus someone saw him there. Jess tells him to wait and speak to his lawyer but Ben says there’s no point, he’s ready to sign a confession. Artie’s stoked, he’s got Catskills to get to, but Jess isn’t buying it. She has a theory though.

Meanwhile, Dean and Kathyrn are out to dinner. Dean has an ulterior motive, which Kathryn spots a mile away – Dean needs more money to keep the paper afloat and Kathryn has it. They are interrupted by the appearance of Ellen, who lets Dean know the magazine went to print with the JB article and it’s great. She senses tension and wanders off again. Kathryn tells Dean she’ll think about the loan.

Jess goes to see Abby, and despite the constant interruptions from Dave the 90s guy, manages to get Abby to admit to being in the hotel room.

She also picks up a magazine.

In other news, this episode is ranked #5 in the list of movies and TV that contain a hairdryer in the bathtub according to IMDB.

At his studio, Hans is about to settle in for a solid night of drinking when he finds Carter sitting in a chair.

“The pictures Hans.” Says Carter.

“I haven’t got them.” Says Hans.

“Stop jerking me around Hans.” Says Carter. “Hello Hans. You’re breaking my balls”

The pictures, apparently, are of Kathryn in bed with Harrison Kane, which Carter was going to use to break up Dean and Kathryn. Hans tells Carter he destroyed them.

Back at the police station Abby explains what happened with Harrison and Ben explains that after he saw Abby run out he went in to yell at Harrison, found him dead, freaked out and tried to cover up evidence of Abby’s crime. Except it wasn’t Abby. Artie is delighted Jess convinced her to come forward, he’s sure that hers is the only set of fingerprints left unidentified and it seals Ben’s fate.

Artie’s about to head out at last, when he gets a phone call from Jess – she wants to know where Abby got that magazine from. She tells Artie she doesn’t know, and Artie and Jess go to her apartment to take a look at it. It’s addressed to Hans “You’re breaking my balls” the photographer.

Over dinner that night, Jess tells Dean and Kathyrn that the evidence against Abby is mounting up and that the police are going to search Abby’s apartment the next day. Which is all the bait she needs.

Ahhhh yes.

I mean everyone else had a motive, so why not her? She gave Harrison money to finance a movie that she was meant to be in, but then she found out Harrison had no money so she bumped him off.

Ugh it’s too hot to question this.

Later gang!

 

S10E03 – The Legacy of Borbey House

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Welcome back to the Cove Fletcherfans, where winter is coming, teens are making out in cemeteries and the dead are rising from the grave.

So you know, the usual.

The Boss Lady is getting some construction done on House Fletcher and is packing up things in boxes while the contractor Charles Wetherby makes himself look busy until he finds a note in his toolbox from his missing fiance Laurel. Jessica’s sympathy is shortlived after Charles gets a phone call from his other client Lawrence Baker and leaves, telling Jess he’ll be back in the morning.

Risky life move, buddy. 

Seth pops in just as Charles departs, eyes on Jessica’s peach pie. Jess tells him she gave it to Mort, it would have spoiled what with the lack of electricity and or plumbing in her house.

Seth is about to blow.

As you can see, Seth is apocalyptic. He’s just spent the whole morning dealing with a freaked out teenage girl who saw someone come out of a grave the night before, and now there’s no goddamn pie?

Later that night, local wallpaper peddler Molly Holt drops by Lawrence Baker’s house where she is shown inside by his butler Peter Jatich. She thinks she’s there to show samples but he’s got a whole three-course dinner planned.

I mean it. You get the hell out right now.

Despite Mollie’s protests Baker orders Jatich to start serving the first course. As he heads to the kitchen, he pauses to eavesdrop on the conversation he can hear through the vents.

Later that night, when Molly finally returns home, her father Philip tells her that her boyfriend Dave called to see where she was – apparently she’s broken three dates with him in the last month. Molly says she’s surprised he noticed. Her father tells her to give him a break and she says she has, for eighteen months now. Molly tells him which wallpapers Baker has chosen and Philip simply says that he’s glad he doesn’t have to pay her by the hour.

The next day Molly is around at JB’s to show samples, but she and JB are both distracted – Molly by Lawrence Baker, JB by the complete shermozzle that is renovating her house.

She is so done you guys. (I have no context for this, the only way I could afford to live in a house is if the zombie apocalypse destroys society. I’m not saying I hope it happens, but I wouldn’t mind renovating something)

JB calls time on the whole thing and returns some library books with Seth.

Let’s be honest, it’s also me at the bookshop. And that time I went to the second-hand book sale in Geelong and all the books were a dollar and I passed out.

JB meets visiting writer Dr Howard Sorensen (who was the guy popping out of the grave at the start of the episode, apparently he’s visiting from the netherworld) who explains he’s in town researching the history of the Borbey house. Which just so happens to be the house Lawrence Baker is renovating I mean really what were the odds.

Oh, you guys! Dr Sorenson is being played by the guy who was in charge of all the wildfire in Kings Landing in Game of Thrones. He passed away like a month ago.

Seth thinks the idea is hilarious. Apparently back in the day, the former residents of the Borbey house were killed by a vampire.

“Well despite what the medical establishment would have us believe, Doctor, there are a great many things in this world which defy rational explanation.” Says Dr Sorenson.

Huh. You’re not wrong there.

Jess hurries Seth out of the library before he completely hulks out. Outside they find Dave Perrin, brother of Charles Weatherby’s missing fiance, sticking up posters begging for information about his missing sister. Molly begs him to accept that she’s gone, but he won’t have a bar of it. He tells Seth that his car is fixed just as Mort rolls up in the Mort mobile and thanks JB for the peach pie. He asks how the renovations are going and Seth tells him not to mention the war. Mort’s reason for stopping though is to update Dave on a lead he tracked down about his sister. Apparently, the private investigator Dave hired mistook a 56-year-old short woman for his sister. Mort gently suggests that these leads are eating too much into the department’s sources.

Later that afternoon Mike drops Lawrence Baker’s car off at his house and demands payment. Jatich the butler refuses to let him in, but a sunglasses totin’ Baker says it’s fine. Molly’s told him about Mike, but apparently not that they are going to be engaged. Mike takes a swing at him and is thrown out of the house just as Molly arrives. Once the door closes, Baker takes off his glasses. Because obvs he’s a vampire.

Later that night, the kids from the cemetery are strolling along a path when the girls spot an arm sticking out of the ground and loses her mind. The next morning, Seth and Mort are called to the scene to discover it’s a mannequin arm. Apparently, that’s not cause for alarm BUT I BEG TO DIFFER THOSE THINGS ARE CREEPY AF.

Over at the Borbey house Lawrence Baker has decided a wall needs to come out. Charles tries to explain that it’s a load-bearing wall, and it will cost a lot of money to compensate for it. He quotes double his initial amount for the project, and Baker tells him to do it.

Charles jets over to House Fletcher to tell JB he can’t do her renovations anymore, Baker’s stepped up his demands and he still has to finish the rennos at the sheriff’s office but it’s okay because he’s got someone coming to take over the job who can start that afternoon don’t even worry about it.

Oh, how I know this feeling.

Over at the sheriff’s office, the renos are in fact full steam ahead, much to Mort’s chagrin. He gets a phone call and is about to head out the door when one of the old ducks wanders in to tell him that she saw Dr Sorenson digging up graves at the cemetery the previous night. Mort gets Deputy Andy on the case and rushes out the door – turns out his hot new lead is actually a potential sighting of Laurel, in a critical condition in hospital. He tells Dave who rushes over there. Mort then heads over to the cemetery where the grave of William Borbey has been opened and garlic shoved in.

Later that evening, JB is picking up some wallpaper from Philip and Molly when Old Mate Baker wanders in, wanting to purchase a house Philip has for sale. Philip tells him it isn’t for sale and that the shop is closed. Molly reappears from the back room and is delighted to see “Larry!”

Jess really doesn’t have time for this.

Philip throws “Larry” out of his store and orders him to stay away from his daughter. Molly is a bit peeved at his behaviour, but Philip tells her Lawrence Baker doesn’t exist according to the credit check he got his friend to do down at the bank. Jess finds that interesting, as Eve Simpson told her that Larry paid cash for the house.

What a concept.

Night falls, a storm hits. Dr Sorensen takes it upon himself to do a thorough investigation of Larry by sneaking into his house and taking note of the lack of mirrors and bottles of red liquid because you guys Larry is totes a vampire.  Meanwhile Mort shows off his new sheriff’s office to Seth and JB who are very impressed. Well, JB is, Seth thinks its a waste of taxpayer dollars.

The open for inspection is unfortunately cut short when Mort gets a phone call. There’s been a murder at the old Borbey place. The trio roll on over and find Larry dead on the ground, a stake through his heart.

Because, and I can’t remind you enough (and neither can the MSW writers) LARRY IS 100% TOTES OBVS A VAMPIRE.

Mort tries to hide his belief that Larry was a vampire, despite all evidence to the contrary. Seth tells him that Larry was whacked on the head before getting staked, which does nothing for Mort’s fears. Peter Jatich tells them that the side door was open, which was how the killer got in, and no he wasn’t that upset Larry was bumped off, he wasn’t wild about him.

The next day Dave is hard at work mechanicing when Mort calls to see how he went with the mystery woman. Turns out she wasn’t his sister either, and he didn’t get home til 3am so definitely didn’t stake the vampire. Molly swings by to say how sorry she is it wasn’t Laurel, and he tells her he’s sorry to hear about Larry. It’s awkward.

Down at the police station Dr Sorenson says he was in his hotel room all evening, and he never met Larry #fakenews. JB strolls in armed to the teeth with books and says that Larry was staked with the wrong kind of wood to be killed, it should have been ash, not fir. Jess thinks that someone was trying to make it look like a staking.

Charles pulls her aside and apologises again for the way he skipped out on her reno. JB says whatever. Dr Sorensen announces that the grave he dug up was William Borbey’s and it was empty. He thinks that in fact, Larry IS William Borbey and he’s not dead, only undead.

This episode is ridiculous.

Mort and JB go for a stroll along the water. Mort’s convinced this is some vampiric shenanigans, but Jess is sure there must be a logical explanation. They run into Dave who is showing photos of Laurel’s boat in case it jogs someone’s memory. It does for JB, but not in relation to Laurel. She asks Mort to call the planning board, they need to get over there immediately.

The planning board, it turns out, is being renovated as well and they can’t find the file JB is looking for – the building permit for the Borbey house. Deputy Andy pops up and tells them that Peter Jatich’s fingerprints match those of a known Stasi agent in East Germany.

Mort and Jess confront Peter, but he denies the whole thing. He tells them he heard Larry and Dr Sorenson arguing, but didn’t actually see Dr Sorensen kill Larry. Mort figures either Dr Sorenson is lying or Peter is, but either way they’ve nabbed a killer.

JB has found the inital tender bids for the renovation project and tells Mort she’s not so sure about that.

Of course not, says Mort. And are you going to tell me?

I think JB is just making her own fun at this point.

Instead, JB wanders into the sheriff’s office the next morning and announces to the world that Larry’s attorneys are finishing the renovation, and her contractor is starting the next morning.

Later that night…

I’m not even sure I care at this point.

For you see, Charles bumped off his beloved Laurel when she tried to dump him, and then hid her body in a wall at the Borbey house where he was doing some rennos at the time. Then when Larry wanted him to remove the wall, he killed him.

I mean what even was this episode. Where’d the vampire stuff come from? I’m so confused and hungry.

Let’s just end on the mental image of Mort’s face when he is shown a picture of William Borbey looking identical to Larry Baker and not dwell on whatever the hell this was.

Later gang

S10E02 – For Whom The Bell Tolls

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Just one sec.

The important thing is I make myself laugh.

This demolition derby is in fact in NYC, and is being undertaken by the Gillrich brothers, Eugene and Walter. Their efforts are not going unnoticed and a group of concerned citizens is working to save three remaining brownstones from being demolished. Two have already been vacated but one still has people and even more conveniently a bar, which is where we find Our Heroine being recruited to the cause by local so-and-so Carol Collins. Jess is happy to chuck some coin in but she’s swamped with deadlines. They are soon joined by Margaret, who apparently is a friend of JB’s but I can’t work it out. Apparently some famous writers did some writing and some gangsters did some gangstering in the building, which of course JB knows all about because JB loves a good historical snoop.

My grandfather’s rule is that it’s socially acceptable to start drinking at 4pm (except on Christmas when it’s 12pm), which I think is incredibly reasonable.

Meanwhile all is not well in the state of Gillrich. There’s trouble with protestors, trouble with investors, and Walter is subjected to Lady Macbeth’s Gillrich’s plans for the interiors of Gillrich Tower which should absolutely in no way be confused with Trump Tower no siree Bob.

This is a Simpsons quote that frankly can’t get shouted enough.

Walter has had a phone call from Margaret.  There’s a hearing the next day to grant or deny an injunction requested by the Save Our Building mob, and Margaret just wants them to know that there will be pickets and TV crews and all sorts of shenanigans. Also, there’s an 87-year-old lady called Mrs Rhodes who isn’t leaving her apartment.

Eugene tells Walter not to worry about Mrs Rhodes, Walter wouldn’t let Eugene just kick her out so they are paying for the move to Florida. Walter is still anxious and wonders whether another site might be more suitable but Eugene tells him to shut it, and to keep his mouth closed during the hearing.

Now Fletcherfans, you’re not going to believe this, but the next day at the meeting Walter admits he has reservations about the project leaving the committee to adjourn for the day without reaching a verdict. Local reporter Mike LaRocca is there to cover all the reactions from Margarets (shy bafflement) to Carols (gloating) to Eugene and Walters (furious and stubborn silence respectively). He also gets the reaction from bar owner Nolan Walsh who is also keen to plug his new signature cocktail.

The signature cocktail is called A Hickey From Kernickie and seriously that should be true.

JB sees the news report and feels inspired (plus she’s totally on top of her deadlines now) so she calls Carol and offers her presence at the rally that evening. Carol is delighted and immediately tells her new boyfriend Eugene Gillrich all about it. He’s not too fussed, he’s there for one reason and one reason only – which is good news for Carol as she’s planning to record the whole thing on tape to share with the committee when it resumes in 48 hours.

Across town, Walter Gillrich sends his secretary home for the night, while Mike Larocca cops a bollocking from someone called Vic Barton for reasons that will become clear if you read the IMDB page like I just did. But for now, know that Vic and Mike want the building torn down.

Later…

They are really signalling the clues these days.

JB and Margaret arrive the same time as Lee Gillgrich pulls up in her car. They barely wonder what she’s doing there but it turns out her husband is inside the bar trying to milk some goodwill so there you go. JB gets interviewed by Mike, who starts with the question “So Mrs Fletcher, does your bar crawling bring you here often?”

This might have broken the sass-o-meter.

Post interview JB meets Mrs Rhodes’s nurse Josie Miles, who explains her patient isn’t up to coming downstairs but she’ll definitely sign the petition. Margaret gets a phone call from Walter and leaves the bar. Later, the bartender announces that the 5-0 have arrived to start towing cars, and there’s a mass exodus of people who leave to move their cars. Eugene sits down with Nolan and offers him more money to move the bar, or else feel his wrath. Nolan offers Eugene to feel his fist in Eugene’s face, at which Eugene picks himself up from the ground and departs with Mrs Gillrich.

The next day Lord and Lady Macbeth/Gillrich roll into work and find Walter dead at his desk. The NYPD are called to the scene, led by everyone’s favourite Golden Ex-Husband, Artie Gelber. Eugene and Lee tell Artie they can’t think of anyone who would want to kill Walter, he was liked by everyone.

As Artie leaves the scene of the crime he’s ambushed by Mike LaRocca who gets on his soapbox when Artie won’t give him anything, leaving Artie to tell him if he wants to make speeches he should run for office. LaRocca is ambushed himself when Vic Barton turns up again to inform him that with Walter dead the injunction to stop the demolition has been put on hold which means the demolition on hold. For the record, Mike LaRocca wants to do a TV special where he digs up Nolan’s bar to find the victims of a gangster who used to hang out there and presumably Vic Barton is bankrolling the special except this is never made clear at all.

Artie goes to see Margaret to get more info and runs into JB, who tells him she cannot really offer anything. Margaret says she spoke to Walter on the phone but that was it. Artie’s sidekick announces that Walter was shot between 8pm and 9pm. JB points out that if Walter was shot from behind sitting at Eugene’s desk then the assumption must be made that the intended target was Eugene and Artie agrees. His current theory is that a tenant whacked him to stop him from destroying their home. Margaret hands over a list of tenants still living in the buildings, including Mrs Rhodes who has lived there so long she’s only paying $300 per month.

What I would give for rent control to be a thing in Melbourne.

Meanwhile, there’s high drama in the gang to save the brownstones. Margaret has just told Carol that a whole heap of petitions have been declared invalid because they were signed by dead people (talk about burying the lede guys) and Carol tells Margaret that she knows she went to see Walter that night. The whole thing is a bit frosty.

After facing an apparent bust interviewing tenants, Artie turns his attention to Nolan Walsh, since he did punch out Eugene. Nolan tells him he’d totally whack Eugene but he had nothing against Walter, and he wouldn’t mistake the two. Artie gets a call from Detective Henderson who tells him they finally caught a break via some fingerprints.

Apparently, the fingerprints belong to Margaret, as her assistant tearfully explains to JB over the phone when she calls to cancel their meeting. JB is stunned, especially since she received a fax from Margaret smack bang in the middle of when Margaret should have been committing the crime. Oh the 90s, when we were all saved by fax machines.

JB finds Artie at the Gillrich offices and explains she’s convinced Margaret didn’t kill Walter but Artie is unimpressed. He’s a little more impressed when JB finds some blue fluff on the floor and deduces that Walter was actually killed in his office and wheeled into Eugene’s office to throw everyone off the scent, but he thinks this still proves Margaret is guilty.

#TeamDorothyForever (I haven’t seen that much Golden Girls but I think I’m more a Sophia)

Down at the police station JB tries to explain to Artie that he’s got it wrong, Margaret tells him he’s caving under pressure from Eugene Gillrich but Artie’s not buying it. Henderson pops up to confirm that all the tenants of the building had nothing against Walter Gillrich, except he still hasn’t spoken to Mrs Rhodes. According to her nurse, Mrs Rhodes has gone to New Jersey to see family/hit up the tables at Atlantic City (look at me go with my local references I’ve learnt from extensive television watching). Artie offering to make Margaret a coffee gives JB an idea and she bolts out of the office on a mission.

Back at the bar JB finds Carol and Nolan drinking to their almost guaranteed win at the planning committee hearing. Nolan offers his chair to JB and wanders off, leaving JB to confront Carol with the truth – she’d met Eugene before the hearing? JB knows this because she heard Eugene order Carol a martini with an onion without being told. Carol admits it freely and explains that she has Eugene on tape offering 50K for the save the building committee to stop its campaign against the development. JB is aghast but Carol doesn’t care – her reputation is already tarnished, it will do more damage to Eugene. She’s fine with it. The mailman drops some mail off for Mrs Rhodes and JB decides it’s time to pay a visit so she offers to take it upstairs.

Meanwhile, Nolan and Mike are having a chat about Mike’s plans to do a TV special and dig up the bones of the victims of the gangster that used to hang out there. Nolan’s on board until Mike starts talking about how much money he will make, then he throws him out of the bar.

(In case you were wondering if this storyline sounded familiar)

Upstairs, JB knocks on Mrs Rhodes’s door and explains she has her fitness mags but not her social security check. The door opens, and it’s the nurse. You caught me, she says.

DAT FACE THO

Josie goes downstairs to move her car and tells JB that when Mrs Rhodes died she left everything to Josie as she had no other family. She notified everyone else, she just kind of forgot to tell the rental authority.

JB suddenly remembers something else. Something about cars being towed. She drags Artie down to the town planning injunction committee and snags Mr and Mrs Gillrich for a private word.

Surprised or not surprised? I’ll never know.

Ah yes. Lady Macbeth was getting annoyed at Walter’s lack of support for her husband’s plans to take over the world and so shot him. You know. The usual.

Later gang!

 

 

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