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S06E18 – O’Malleys Luck

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DISCLAIMER: You may notice that the captions bear less relevance to Murder She Wrote than usual. In fact, this post is about 25% Murder She Wrote and 739% about me watching all of Jessica Jones in 4 days. If you haven’t watched Jessica Jones yet, come back later because spoilers sweetie.

Oh for God’s sake. 

You guys can we talk about how freaking amazing Jessica Jones was?

You guys can we talk about how freaking amazing Jessica Jones was? And how freaking CREEPY David Tennant was?

You guessed it guys, another bookend episode. This time, Jess has just received a (late) birthday card from her friend Lieutenant O’Malley who has a tale to tell her. Convenient.

This particular tale centres around a real estate magnate, Roland Trent, who is currently far too busy wheeling and dealing to worry about his upcoming tenth wedding anniversary, much to the annoyance of his wife Gretchen. At the same time O’Malley is dealing with his late partner’s daughters demotion from working at city hall to being a beat cop after she rather neatly rejected the advances of one of the deputy mayor’s aides, Paul Abbott.

Like in the first episode when Jessica had that flashback and Killgrave was licking her face I mean bloody hell I was unprepared.

Like in the first episode when Jessica had that flashback and Killgrave was licking her face I mean bloody hell I was unprepared.

While we’re on the subject of creepy dudes being creepy, Roland Trent is going ‘out to dinner’ with his ‘lawyer’ to discuss business, but Gretchen sees right through it. He tells her not to wait up. Ugh. Gretchen’s secretary, Alice, sees how distressed her boss is and suggests they go back to the office to finish the letters they were working on. It turns out dinner wasn’t entirely code, as in the beginning that’s all it is – Trent asking his lawyer David Kingston for a way out of his marriage and Kingston telling him that there isn’t one unless he’s prepared to give up half of everything he owns. They are soon joined by Trent’s new bit of fluff, Cindy and David departs, reminding his client that he has a meeting at 9:30 the next morning, making Trent realise he’d left his briefcase at the office.

Down at the precinct O’Malley is not pleased to hear about the snake Abbott’s advances towards his partner’s daughter, Frances Rawley, and decides to give her a promotion to being his partner. She is stoked, and wants to know what they will be working on. O’Malley tells her that things had been slow but he had a feeling that something was about to happen.

Like Roland Trent typing a fake suicide note and then throwing his dead wife off the balcony?

And when Hope killed her parents! Goddamn. And poor Ruben :*( But damn that show was so unsettling

But the whole thing about Killgrave literally being everywhere and stalking her from a distance DEAR GOD.

O’Malley and Frances are called to the scene, where they find Detective Grillo already chalking it up as as suicide, and takes the opportunity to hit on Frances while O’Malley notices that one bookend is cleaner than another. (Honestly though. Killed by a bookend in a bookend episode. JUST CALM DOWN MURDER SHE WROTE WRITERS ALRIGHT?)

Roland Trent appears from the private elevator (because you’re only really a success if you have more than one lift into your office) and wants to know why the police are investigating since it’s clear his wife committed suicide. O’Malley tells him his cleaning crew is no good – they only cleaned one bookend and left it wet on the wooden cupboard. O’Malley also can’t help but notice that Trent hasn’t asked to see the suicide note yet, and Trent tells him that it’s because he’s worried about what it might contain. O’Malley assures him there’s nothing to worry about and Trent takes a look AT THE NOTE HE WROTE. He asks for it to be returned to him once the investigation is over and goes downstairs to meet his lawyer who apparently just heard the news. In the car, Trent asks Kingston what he knows about O’Malley – Kingston tells him that O’Malley’s service record is the best in the department but that he does get into trouble occasionally. Trent hopes that this is one such occassion.

Sidenote, I’ve just realised that O’Malley is the original Commissioner Gordon. I thought I recognised his face.

And the way Killgrave tries to justify himself and says he acted impeccably WTF.

And the way Killgrave tries to justify himself and says he acted impeccably towards Jessica WTF. 

Back at the precinct, O’Malley and Rawley discuss the case with O’Malley’s boss Captain Cohen, who orders O’Malley to shut the investigation down, until he learns that the suicide was almost certainly murder.

The next day, Trent sees the DO NOT CROSS tape across his private elevator and shouts YOLO (part of this isn’t true). Unfortunately for him, O’Malley is upstairs and is rather surprised to see Trent at work, what with the likely homicide of his wife and all, since the hobo that lives in the alley downstairs never heard Gretchen scream. O’Malley escorts Trent from the office, saying he doesn’t want to make him late for his lunch appointment.

While O’Malley deals with the ‘grieving’ widow, Rawley goes to see Gretchen’s assistant Alice who actually is grieving. She tells Frances that Trent found them working the night  Gretchen died (Alice typing Gretchen’s dictated letters due to her terrible writing) and lost his mind at the thought his wife was trying to force him out. It was only when Alice assured him they would be gone within the hour that he calmed down enough to leave, although forgetting his briefcase again. Frances asks her if she thought Gretchen committed suicide and she says absolutely not, though she wouldn’t know anything about Trent’s extra-curricular activities. Frances reports back to O’Malley who doesn’t quite know what to make of it either. They are interrupted by Sergeant Grillo, who informs O’Malley that he’s wanted back at the precinct to confirm that Gretchen’s death was a suicide. This doesn’t quite go the way the captain plans, as O’Malley informs the gathered press that there is no evidence at this time that Gretchen Trent was murdered. The press pounce on that and O’Malley admits that Roland Trent is a suspect, causing the watching Trent to lose his mind at his television. After the press conference, the captain tells O’Malley his days as a cop are numbered.

After Trent gives a very cold and deliberate comment to a media pack loitering outside his office, in which he declares he has an alibi who will come forward and clear his name, Kingston accompanies Cindy the secretary/mistress to the police station the next day. Frances is surprised to see Kingston, as she recognises him from his frequent visits to Paul Abbott’s office. O’Malley excuses himself, saying he has a meeting he needs to barge into.

Cindy swears that Trent was with her from when he left his office after fighting with his wife, until learning of the suicide on the news later that night. O’Malley confirms that Cindy knowing Trent for several months means what he thinks it means, and remarks on the fact that noone else knew about her. Cindy tells him they kept it very quiet, and that she’d never even been to Trent’s office. After she and Kingston leave, O’Malley swears to the captain that he will do whatever it takes to save the department from embarrassment, which doesn’t delight the captain.

And comparing Killgrave's shitty upbringing with Jessica's childhood, and the nature of victimhood and JESUS WHEN HOPE DIES I MEAN WHAT THE HELL.

And comparing Killgrave’s shitty upbringing with Jessica’s childhood, and the nature of victimhood and JESUS WHEN HOPE DIES I MEAN WHAT THE HELL.

A court order procured, O’Malley and Frances head down to Paul Abbott’s office to get the tape conversations his secretary so helpfully told Frances about at the beginning of the episode. Roland Trent’s shady business practices revealed it becomes clear that Trent couldn’t leave his wife or let his wife leave him. Which was bad news for Cindy.

And the whole thing with Jessica's childhood house!

And the whole thing with Jessica’s childhood house!

I think though, that the below picture sums up this episode quite nicely:

But that last scene on the dock, with what Killgrave threatens to do to Trish. I watched that whole damn episode with my hand over my mouth.

But that last scene on the dock, with what Killgrave threatens to do to Trish. I watched that whole damn episode with my hand over my mouth.

I think we all learned a valuable lesson about me bingeing on TV shows. IT HAS ABSOLUTELY NO EFFECT ON ME AT ALL.

Later gang!

Later gang!

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S06E17 – Murder (According to Maggie)

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THE BOSS IS TALKING

THE BOSS IS TALKING

That grin can only mean one thing – it’s storytime with JB. Again. (HOW DID THEY GET AWAY WITH THIS FOR SO LONG!!!)

This week, Our Heroine would like to tell you about her favourite student, Mary Margaret McAuley, a talented writer who couldn’t get anything published until she started writing hardboiled detective fiction. Her newest job is as creator of the TV show Beat Cop, starring Bert Rogers as the aforementioned cop, assisted by the token blonde Dana Darren.

Margaret is hard at work on the next script when she gets a phone call from her assistant Vi – there’s trouble on set. Apparently Beat Cop doesn’t like the idea that he has to wait for forensics before proving who the killer is. After some fancy negotiating, Mary Mac gets Dana’s character to make the call, allowing Bert’s character the satisfaction of catching the killer using nothing but a hunch.

UGH.

On her way back to the office Mary Mac gets a visit from her agent, Leo Kaplan. She’s excited to see him and to find out what his other client thought about her script (about relationships and whatnot) but is less than enthused when she learns that he didn’t actually read the script, but he liked the summary his reader gave his secretary. Leo’s actual business on the set is to talk about the future of Beat Cop. The new big boss of the network, Keith Carmody isn’t a fan despite having told the head of the production company, Brian Thursdan, that he never watched the show. His second in command, Julie Pritzer, tries to calm Brian down after he storms out of the meeting but to little effect.  Meanwhile, Mary Mac goes to see the inspiration for the show (and potential crush) Lieutenant Vincent Palermo to tell him the news that Beat Cop might be off the air, but he doesn’t seem all that upset about it.

Later that night, Elizabeth has another crack at dissuading Carmody from cancelling Beat Cop but Keith tells her her job is to look pretty and take pointless meetings.

My how times haven't changed...

My how times haven’t changed…

As Julie leaves, Keith gets a phone call from Brian to discuss Beat Cop but he’s not interested – until Brian puts network owner Harriet De Vol on the phone. Clearly it works out because Mac gets a phone call from Brian saying the show is possibly saved – Keith has agreed to watch some episodes of the show and Mary Mac is charge of which ones, booking the screening room and watching the episodes with Keith. Brian would love to help but he has a development meeting.

The next morning, while Vi puts all the coffee in the coffee pot (VI 4 PM), and Mary Mac tries to sort out how to save the show, Bert Rogers storms in in a huff – he got a phone call from his agent at 6am that morning saying that the show was cancelled. Mary Mac tells him to calm down, and in any case, wasn’t he planning to quit anyway? Bert tells her she shouldn’t believe things just because he says them and tells her that if she doesn’t sort out Keith Carmody he will.

Speaking of. Keith, ensconced in a screening room, is on the phone to someone trying to work out how to remove Harriet De Vol from the equation when someone helpfully sticks a gun through the curtain and shoots him twice. Lieutenant Palermo is called in and learns from the projectionist that he didn’t hear the shots go off, on account of Beat Cop being on the screen. One of Palermo’s minions finds the gun and a hidden door.

While Palermo goes about his 5-0 business, Mary Mac takes care of Brian who has appeared at the studio in a panic – with Keith dead Julie will take over the network, he needs to get in touch with her double quick. Mary Mac tells him that Julie was the one who found Keith’s body and is in the commissary coming to terms.

Awesome, Brian probably says. Which way to the commissary?

d2

While Brian goes off to hurl sympathy at Julie, Mary Mac accompanies Palermo to the set of Beat Cop. Cast and crew are all surprised to learn that Keith was murdered, and didn’t die of boredom (I don’t think Beat Cop had bookend episiodes, so I can’t imagine why that would happen). Palermo checks alibis and the only person with a shonky one is Bert.

One of Palermo’s lackeys comes to tell him he’s learned something interesting from the prop guy, who in turn informs them that the prop box has been broken into and one of the guns is missing – Bert’s gun to be precise.

Palermo throws Bert in jail for the time being, leaving Mary Mac to tell the director to shoot around the fact that their leading man is now conspicuously unavailable, while at the same time fending off Leo Kaplan who has a convenient list of people (clients) who could replace Bert on the show. She gets a panicked phone call from Brian begging her to come meet with Julie at the network.

Julie, who has hit the ground running despite the terrible shock of finding Keith’s body, tells them that she’s not sure that Beat Cop can survive without Bert Rodgers, and in any case she has a plan for giving Dana Darren her own show as a brain surgeon at a top metropolitan hospital. Ugh. These were clearly the days when the go-to TV shows were cop or doc, before the days of reality TV when you get 37 variations of Australian Model Factor Idol Talent Home Renovation Chef Rescue Kitchen Block.

(I reject all forms of reality, but especially reality television).

After the meeting, Brian begs Mary Mac to help Palermo solve the case/get Bert out of jail, and promises to get the pilot of her romantic story Love in Naples off the ground. Mary Mac asks if Brian is yanking her chain, and Brian says trust me.

When does that ever fail to be a good idea?

When does that ever fail to be a good idea?

Mary Mac visits Bert in prison and gets him to stop crying long enough to swear he didn’t kill Keith. Palermo is unmoved by this fact, nor by Mary Mac’s theory that the only reason that Bert’s prints are on the gun is because the killer wore gloves. Palermo tells Mary to go back to her typewriter.

On set, Mary Mac finds Dana to ask her about the medical show, and to find out why she lied about her alibi. Dana tells her that while she was on the phone to a Broadway producer, a more accurate view would be she was on the phone to his answering machine. Then she was with Leo for 30 minutes after that, which isn’t what Leo says at all. The medical show, it turns out, is being put together by Leo’s agency – in other words Mary Mac’s agent was getting the star of her show a show of her own to replace Mary Mac’s show.

Good old Hollywood forever.

Mary gets the lowdown on the hidden door from the security guard, Burnsy, who also tells her a story from back in the day, when Andy Butler (who plays Beat Cop’s boss) was on a different show that ended up being cancelled by Keith Carmody.  That night, she and Brian update Harriet De Vol on the latest developments and she tells them that the show is cancelled without Bert Rodgers.

Back in her office, Mary Mac sends Vi home and stays to watch what the editor had cobbled together from the day’s shooting. Alas there is a continuity error, and a pencil appears and reappears in the pocket of Andy Butler. She calls the director, Al, to work out what time the footage was filmed. goes back to the studio and….oh come on now.

WHAT THE HELL

WHAT THE HELL

It would seem that Andy couldn’t deal with the idea of Keith cancelling another one of his shows. And apparently he would have gotten away with it if he hadn’t dropped a pencil, and if Mary Mac hadn’t noticed the pencil and decided that it was clearly the PENCIL OF A KILLER.

Worst. Episode. Ever. Now, if y’all will excuse me, to compensate for this, I am going to go binge-watch Jessica Jones until my eyes fall out of my head.

See you next week Fletcherfans!

See you next week Fletcherfans!

 

 

S06E12 – Goodbye Charlie

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We have apparently broken into JB’s house this week Fletcherfans, and found her hard at work on her newest book. Would you like to hear about it?

Are you ready boys and girls?

I feel a story coming on.

Once upon a time, in a magical faraway kingdom called Hollywood, there lived a private detective (naturally) called Frank Albertson. He wasn’t very good at his job but he was convinced that fortune was just around the corner.

MAJESTIC MULLET IS MAJESTIC

MAJESTIC MULLET IS MAJESTIC

After returning home from a failed attempt at catching a cheating husband, Frank finds his wife in their bedroom with a lawyer, Raymond Fleischer but the good news is it’s nothing suss – Raymond represents the estate of Elizabeth Flack, who has left all her worldly possessions to Frank’s uncle Charlie. Raymond is looking to find Charlie to tell him the good news but Frank and his wife Sunny haven’t seen him for over 2 years, when Frank finally got sick of old uncle Charlie eating his food, drinking his beer and stealing his shirts. The last they heard he was in Reno although the last Christmas card Sunny sent him came back ‘not known at this address’.

Raymond tells them it’s a shame – if the old guy has passed away then the fortune would go to Frank. And there are a lot of zero’s in fortune. Frank’s pupils turn into dollar signs and he asks Raymond how to go about proving Charlie is dead but Raymond tells them it takes 7 years for someone to be declared legally dead. He gives them his card and bids them good day.

While back out on his quest to catch his client’s husband cheating, Frank spots a story in the newspaper about an unidentified body found on some railway tracks outside of Huckabee, Nevada and constructs a Genius Plot. The body is too badly damaged to be properly identified, and one dead body is as good as another someone once said probably.

Sunny is horrified – poor Uncle Charlie!

(Frank explains that it’s not actually Uncle Charlie).

Sunny is on board and they set to work bombarding the coroner’s office in Huckabee, Nevada to work out the winning combination of identifying features that “Uncle Charlie” needs (and let’s not dwell on the fact that Huckabee is literally a 1 horse town but it has a coroner’s office). Through a cunning montage of elimination, they work out that John Doe is old, tubby, brown-eyed and doesn’t have a wooden leg. Sunny nails the guessing game, making Frank wonder if she’s got some sort of second sight happening but she says she’s just describing Uncle Charlie.

I don’t think she understands what’s happening you guys.

Word.

Word.

Frank and Grady Sunny drive to Huckabee to claim the remains of “Uncle Charlie” and meet the local Sheriff who according to IMDB is called Ed Ten Eyck which frankly sounds suspicious but then if you look closely…

I want a numerical middle name. Briony Forty Two Williamson. That rolls right off the tongue.

I want a numerical middle name. Briony Forty Two Williamson. That rolls right off the tongue.

The sheriff is mighty understanding, and tells them that John Doe died quick – was knocked clean out of his shoes, which they found beside the body, but weirdly no ID. Frank and Sunny take it in turns to tell a complicated story about Uncle Charlie’s life as a hobo, but as much as the Sheriff would love to help them bury their uncle and be on their way, there’s a catch – they aren’t the first people to lay claim to the body. In fact, they’re 3rd.

Cut to some noises that I never wanted to hear come out of Bill Maher, and then an explanation.

The classic lolsome innuendo.

The classic lolsome innuendo.

Frank decides his next move is to pay a visit to a guy whose name he saw written upside down on the Sheriff’s desk, whom he finds down at the local bar doing some lip sync battling.

That is 100% not as funny as I think it is.

This is 100% not as funny as I think it is.

Bart Mahoney, local lawyer and Rick Astley afficionado, is representing Marcia Mae Bailey whose father apparently lies in the morgue. Bart informs Frank that since the warning light was out, and old Roper Bailey was deaf, the railroad company as good as murdered him – and what jury is going to argue with a grieving child?

The bartender snorts at this. It would seem the grieving child might not be all that grieving.

Back at the hotel room, Frank is “resting” with Sunny (I would say get a room, but they did) when he gets a call from the Tenner, unhappy about his recent meeting with Bart Mahoney and requesting his presence down at the sheriff’s office. He’d like to introduce Frank to contestant number 2 in Who Wants To Be A Corpse Claimer – Tilly Bascombe, who is claiming the dead man is her husband Mort. They compare pictures just in case, but Mort isn’t Uncle Charlie. Tillie tells them that Mort liked to take long walks due to his insomnia, and it was entirely probable that the reason why they didn’t find any ID was because the velocity of the train whipped it out of his pockets.

Science bitch!

This gives Frank an idea, and he asks the Sheriff to recruit the local little league team to search around the tracks the next day. That night, he and Sunny go down to the railway line and throw some of Uncle Charlie’s belongings into the bushes.

The next day (JB tells us, madly searching for more whiskey) Frank wakes up feeling confident the belongings will be found. Because guys, you can’t just hide things in the desert. Someone will find them.

Unfortunately for Frank, his enthusiasm is shortlived. The local little league team is not too crash hot at finding things, leaving Frank to stew and Sunny to wonder why Tilly doesn’t sweat.

They are soon joined by Tilly’s cousin Jerry Wilber, who has some desert experience.

ALL HAIL THE KING. LONG LIVE THE KING.

LONG LIVE THE KING.

Jerry, it turns out, has been running Mort’s laundromat microchip company ever since Meth Mort disappeared. But honestly who cares because

I CAN'T GO ON

I CAN’T GO ON

The search for meth missing possessions continues, and they are soon joined by Bart Mahoney, complaining about an illegal search, the death of his client’s father etcetera etcetera. They are also joined by his client’s legs, and after a while, the rest of her.

n2

m2

I CAN’T EVEN

While Bart banishes his client back to the car to contain her chest grief, the little league kids hit gold. It’s bad news for Tilly and Jerry, good news for Frank and Sunny – they’ve found Uncle Charlie’s possessions. The sheriff takes them back to his office for a closer look but begrudgingly admits he can’t find any reason not to turn over the body – even if he is clearly suspicious. He gives Frank and Sunny a form and tells them to go see the coroner, Jack Yamamoto. When they arrive they meet his assistant, Lon Ainsley, whose voice Sunny recognises from their constant calls to the coroners office, and who you might recognise from such episodes as these. (Side note – I wish they had put the actor, Robin Bach, in more episodes; he was hilarious. Unfortunately he passed away in 1991 but he he was one of the unexpectedly best bits I’ve discovered watching this show).

Lon ushers Frank and Sunny into Jack Yamoto’s office. While Frank fills out paperwork, Sunny reads Autopsy magazine (oh MSW writers, you’re so funny!) and Jack offers to get them a deal on a plot at the local cemetery. But when the last form is filled out, and Frank and Sunny are just leaving the office, Frank gets a tap on the shoulder. It’s the Big Ten. He’s just had a call from his counterpart in the next town – they’ve just arrested a hobo with a wallet, with close to 200 bucks in it. The wallet itself has plenty of ID in it – it belongs to Mort Bascomb. So what Big Ten wants to know, is just how Uncle Charlie’s belongings ended up all over the railway track?

Needless to say, Frank is under arrest. The sheriff throws him in the slammer with a friendly hobo who is busy stuffing his rather fancy looking shoes with newspaper, since they don’t fit him. This gives Frank an idea and he hollers for the judge.

I MEAN JUST LOOK AT THIS DAMN PICTURE.

I MEAN JUST LOOK AT THIS DAMN PICTURE.

The sheriff listens while Frank pitches his theory – if the shoes were knocked off John Doe, they wouldn’t be sitting next to him. Someone killed John Doe, realised John Doe wasn’t wearing shoes, tried to jam his own shoes onto the body, realised the shoes were too small and so waited for the train to do it’s business and left the shoes next to the body afterwards. Big Ten and Frank go to see Yamoto, who tests said theory and it’s confirmed. John Doe was murdered. Because, y’know, MURDER she wrote and all.

Frank, now apparently free, goes to see that bartender from the beginning of the episode to see what he can find out about Bart Mahoney and the grieving Marcia Mae. Turns out, Marcia Mae has been taking care of herself since she was 16, with Bart Mahoney footing the bills, including the grocery bill Marcia Mae racks up at the bartender’s other job, the grocery store. She buys chewing gum and soda for herself and Mexican beer and chewing tobacco for her father – and despite the fact that her father’s been missing for 5 days, guess what she bought in the grocery store just that day?

Frank and Sunny report their findings to the Sheriff, who agrees that Bart had no motive for killing John Doe. That leaves the Widow Bascombe, who comes into her husband’s fortune as provided by the company – “with her cousin Jerry the hunk in charge.” Sunny points out.

They decide to pay Tillie a visit and, well…

Well this has taken a turn.

Well this has taken a turn.

After a 5 second attempt at bluffing, Jerry falters and Tillie throws him under a bus. Jerry killed Mort and what’s more he buried him in the backyard.

YOU GUYS.

GODDAMN RIGHT.

GODDAMN RIGHT.

Tillie convinced her (it turns out) second cousin Jerry to kill Mort so she could get his money. They only decided to get married after.

The Sheriff, conceeding defeat, lets Frank and Sunny claim the body on the proviso they get out of town double quick. They arrive home exhausted, but excited about their newfound wealth.

Until they hear someone in the bedroom. It’s Uncle Charlie, just popping in to pick up his things before heading to Vegas with his new girlfriend. You aren’t going to believe this, Charlie tells Frank and Sunny, but some old girlfriend left me a boatload of money!

But let’s face it. Noone cares.

s2

t2

See you next week Fletcherfans!

 

 

 

 

 

S06E10 – Class Act

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Once upon a time, in a magical faraway land called Los Angeles, there was a hobo named Leo Gunderson. Leo was wandering along a beach late one night, looking for somewhere to sleep when he heard a scream on the other side of the sand dunes. When he rushed to see what the matter was, a dark figure slammed into him and pushed him down. After he dusts himself off he goes to investigate and finds the body of a woman lying in the dunes just as the police arrive.

That’s right Fletcherfans. It’s story time with JB again.

A few months after Leo’s arrest the detective in charge of the case, JB’s pal Jake Ballinger is staggered to learn that Leo confessed, when it was obvious that he didn’t do it. His boss tells him the case is closed and when Jake threatens to go over his head the lieutenant says it wouldn’t make a difference – the case is done and Jake’s been reassigned to the teaching position at Freemont University. It would appear someone wants Jake out of the police department rather badly.

Is it me or does this guy look like someone tried to morph Dustin Hoffman and Leslie Nielsen together?

Is it me or does this guy look like someone tried to morph Dustin Hoffman and Leslie Nielsen together?

On Jake’s first day of class it’s already apparent that the course he’s to be teaching is widely recognised as the bludge class, and there are people throwing paper airplanes around to prove it. Paper airplanes? At a university? I mean, turning up to class after just getting home from the pub, sure. Getting to class late because you thought something was about to happen in Passions, absolutely. But paper planes? Honestly, fictional students. Lift your game.

In a move that will be filed under “Things That Would Never Happen On TV today”, Jake quiets the rabble by firing his gun into the air before informing them that there’s a new sheriff in town. He gives them 24 hours to decide whether they want to continue with the course and lets them go. That night  when Jake is chillaxing at home with his daughter Janie, he declares with absolute certainty that there will be no-one at the class tomorrow but his mood darkens when he gets a phone call from the hospital – the mother of Leo Gundarson was just hit by a car and is asking for him. He goes to see her and she tells him Leo only confessed because they told him he would get the death penalty if he didn’t. She begs Jake to keep investigating.

The next morning Jake visits an old friend in the forensics lab to suss out the evidence gathered after the murder, specifically a tyre tread cast, but his friend tells him the case is closed and sealed and there’s nothing he can do about it. Upstairs, his boss reminds him that he’s a teacher now, and that while it’s a crappy deal, Jake is six years away from his pension and to ride it out.

At the university, Jake’s gunshow has had the expected affect:

The guy in the front there grew up to be George Clooney's production partner, and won an Oscar for Argo. #FactBasedReporting #ItFeelsWeirdToBeDoingIt

The guy in the front there grew up to be George Clooney’s production partner, and won an Oscar for Argo. #FactBasedReporting #ItFeelsWeirdToBeDoingItThough

Bernie Berndlestein is nothing compared to Elizabeth Mills sitting behind him though, especially when Jake feels the need to comment on the presence of someone of Elizabeth’s…maturity.

The face of every actress when they're told they're too old to play a part (and my face when someone says I'm really funny for a girl)

The face of every actress when they’re told they’re too old to play a part (and my face when someone says I’m really funny for a girl)

Elizabeth, taking the course to get a promotion at the insurance company where she works as a claims investigator, enquires as to what textbook they will be using, but Jake’s decided it’s going to be more of a practical course.

Cut to the beach where the murder took place. While Elizabeth deals with sand in her heels, Bernie explains to Jake that he’s actually taking the course in order to become a PI.

heh heh heh

heh heh heh

Jake tells them the story of Leo’s arrest for the murder of Janet Carr, and says there’s nothing against a current case being turned into a class project. Is this basically the first season of How to Get Away With Murder? (I only just started watching the first season, Viola Davis is fierce as hell).

While Jake goes back to the university to demand such things as An Office and A Secretary, Elizabeth jumps into the case and begins calling around to find out if the dead woman had an insurance policy. She strikes gold and heads out to the home of the beneficiary of the policy, Jeremy Summerfield. Mrs Summerfield is friendly until Elizabeth asks for Jeremy – Jeremy, it turns out, is the new son of Mr and Mrs Summerfield. Mrs Summerfield takes her son back into the house, but Elizabeth is able to dig up some dirt from the neighbours and calls Jake. Janet Carr is actually Jeanette Cardini, and was the birth mother of Jeremy Summerfield. The nuns at the home for wayward girls where Janet stayed for a time is not willing to divulge any information, but does tell them that Janet made a call to Sacramento the night before she gave birth. Elizabeth, hot on the scent, calls the number pretending to be a wrong number and finds out that the phone belongs to State Senator Andrew Grainger.

Wait, this is more Scandal than How to Get Away With Murder. DRAHMAH.

After stopping in to meet his new secretary and move a bookcase (Why?) Jake heads right on over to the offices of Andrew Grainger. Grainger is more than delighted to meet Jake until the name Janet Carr comes up, at which point he hits the panic button in his desk, summoning his aide Colin Hale. They clam up about any knowledge of the girl, but Jake spots a photo of Grainger’s son on the desk and puts two and two together. Grainger and Hale warn him off the case but Jake’s not having a bar of that. He bids them good day and leaves. Grainger tells Hale to make sure that the record is sealed, neither he nor his son had anything to do with it and he won’t have his son’s future marred by this.

What a lovely bloke. Urgh.

Jake summons Elizabeth to his favourite diner and fills her in on what he’s learned and tells her to try and suss out this Son of Grainger. That night however, while Jake deals with the concept of his daughter moving in with a guy, Elizabeth drops by to report on what she’s learned.  Douglas Grainger was definitely having a thing with Janet Carr, there was a hint of blackmail but then the bad news – both Graingers were in Hawaii at a golf tournament the night Janet died.

context shmontext

context shmontext

Apparently, this nails it for Jake who decides to perform the solution as Richard the Third.

“Dispute not with her, she is a lunatic”: every one of my report cards ever.

While Moira the secretary doesn’t care for Shakespeare’s language, Jake is proving a point – whether he was implicitly told to or not, he thinks Colin Hale killed Janet Carr to make his boss happy. He has a theory of how to prove it, by getting hold of the car Hale hired the night of the murder.

I AM THE ONE WHO POURS

I AM THE ONE WHO POURS

And the cast is a match. The theory is confirmed, Fletcherfans.

I want to see more crimes solved by Shakespearian performance now that I think about it

I want to see more crimes solved by Shakespearian performance now that I think about it

Murder She Blogged is actually taking a week off, but shall return for more wildly inaccurate recaps in two weeks.

But for now, Fletcherfans

BRB, Fletcherfans!

BRB, Fletcherfans!

S06E05 – Jack and Bill

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Disclaimer: This episode was ridiculous.  Believe me when I say any similarity between this recap and the actual episode is coincidental. 

It’s storytime again Fletcherfans!

Oy. I can't believe they persisted with this plan for a whole season.

Oy. I can’t believe they persisted with this plan for a whole season.

JB has just seen a dog run past, and that reminds her that she has to send her pal Bill Boyle a letter. Bill Boyle, for those of you playing along at home, was an NFL star until his knees gave out and then he became a private detective. An incredibly unsuccessful detective.

Apparently, that all changes when he meets Jack. But before he meets Jack, he gets a visit from a man named Johnny Wheeler, who is faking blind and beating up shady characters in mens bathrooms with a poodle.

Even I couldn't make this up. And I invented  Octopus Noir.

Even I couldn’t make this up. And I invented Octopus Noir.

While Johnny is doing whatever the hell that is, Bill Boyle is in his office getting the bad news from his accountant. He’s broke, a fact he is trying to keep secret from his real estate broker girlfriend Celia. He’s pretty despondent when he gets a knock at the door – it’s Johnny Wheeler, and his friend Jack.

Just what?

Just what?

I should also point out something about Johnny Wheeler:

Fun fact: Max Baer Jr couldn't get work for 3 years after Beverly Hillbillies ended, proving that well-known saying 'Never go full hillbilly.'

Truth based reporting: Max Baer Jr couldn’t get work for 3 years after Beverly Hillbillies ended, proving that well-known saying ‘Never go full hillbilly.’

Also for those playing along at home Bill Boyle was previously seen as Hank Shipton that time.

Johnny departs in a rush, thanking Bill for dog-sitting for a couple of hours while he runs an errand, a turn of events Bill did not really agree to. Time passes, and when Johnny doesn’t resurface Bill takes Jack on a stakeout where some “comedy hijinks” ensue, by which I mean there’s another dog and a pretty girl and some barking and what even is this episode.

Back at the office, Johnny still hasn’t turned up but the place has been ransacked. A woman claiming to be Johnny’s wife walks in to pick up the dog, who she calls Marmalade, and pulls a gun when Bill suggests calling his ex-brother-in-law cop. This makes Jack mad! JACK SMASH!

Also this happens:

I just don't even.

I just don’t even.

The lady sneaks into the elevator and makes her escape. Bill and Jack are set to follow when the other elevator opens to reveal Lou Brickman, the aforementioned brother-in-law, with the news that Johnny Wheeler is in the hospital with two bullets in his chest. Unfortunately by the time they get to the hospital he’s dead with three IV bags in his hand.

Later that night, Bill has dinner at Lou’s place. While Lou’s dog goes mental in the laundry room, Lou wants to know more about Johnny Wheeler. Bill tells him what he knows, and is surprised to learn that while Johnny did travel up from Puerto Rico, it was under an assumed name.

Returning home to the set of Melrose Place, Bill takes time out to chat up a hot tub full of stewardesses before going up to his apartment where he is attacked by a horde of ninjas/the Hitcher’s sidekicks from Mighty Boosh. They demand ‘it’ which they still haven’t found despite searching both of Johnny’s bags. They try and pooch-nap Jack, who objects and goes at them. Two end up off the balcony in the swimming pool, the other runs.

Wondering just what the deal is with Jack, Bill puts a call in to his brother-in-law and takes Jack to the police kennels to be x-rayed, but nothing turns up. Back at the office Bill is delighted to see his former secretary Mona is back, after getting fired from her ad agency job for telling a client what she thought of him. As she goes into a long story about her mother packing her bags and coming for a visit Bill has a brainwave: the ninjas said they searched both of Johnny’s bags, but Johnny was holding three IV bags in his had which clearly means there’s another bag at the checked bag counter!

DUH YOU GUYS.

Bill and Jack head down to the baggage claim, and skillfully evade the baggage clerk to retrieve the third bag. Inside, Bill finds a film roll (bless) and takes it in to Lou and Agent Browder, who summon a lip reading expert to decipher what the two men in the footage are saying. It turns out Johnny Wheeler was a super-spy, and he was killed for discovering that the man in the footage, a hitman, was being hired to go to the US to kill someone on the 25th at 7:30pm. Conveniently, the 25th is today.

While the gang are across town making their final plans and pushing ahead, despite not finding the film, Bill is home getting grief from the building manager about his lack of rent paying and sudden increase in dog. While he gets dinner ready for Jack, and gets himself ready for his date with Celia, Celia herself calls to say dinner with the client she’s buttering up is cancelled. Bill offers to bring Chinese food round instead, but hits a snag when he tries to leave – Jack begins barking like mad. Bill gives up and takes Jack to his buddy Cricket at the bar to dogsit for a couple of hours. At the bar he catches a news story about the president of a mysterious South American country attending a football game that night and recognises one of the reporters in the press pack as the woman who masqueraded as Johnny’s wife. He calls the police station looking for Lou Brickman but finds out he’s already at the stadium.

Bill barges through the security, tells Lou that the Prez is the target and the woman is disguised as a reporter. They crash into the room where the press conference is being held and arrest them all, but not before A GUY WITH A MASSIVE MULLET PULLS OUT A VIDEO CAMERA WITH A BAZOOKA IN IT.

Talk about burying the lead.

Talk about burying the lead.

Bad guys nailed, Agent Browder takes Bill and Jack to meet President Ruiz. Turns out President Ruiz is a massive football fan and fangirls out over meeting Bad Bill Boyle but Bill is distracted by Jack’s constant barking. At the last second, he looks at the clock, looks at the waiter, realises the waiter is desperately trying to UNCORK A CHAMPAGNE BOTTLE FULL OF EXPLOSIVES and spear tackles him across the bar, saving the day yet again.

Case closed, Bill is set to depart off into the night and tries to hand the dog back to the CIA, but Agent Browder has bad news – Jack is going to have to be put down if he doesn’t go to the correct home. Bill is outraged, so Agent Browder “reluctantly” lets Bill keep the dog.

So while we mull over the fact that this episode was basically the sequel of Turner and Hooch, and that THERE WAS A VIDEO CAMERA BAZOOKA AND I DIDN’T MAKE IT UP, let us also consider this very important point:

Like a boss.

Like a boss.

And on that note,

Later gang!

Later gang!

S06E03 – The Grand Old Lady

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a2

Jessica is very sad today girls and boys. One of her idols, Lady Abigail Austin, has just passed away aged 101. Or possibly older. She’s a riddle wrapped in an enigma and she is no more.

Reading the obituary, Jessica was reminded of something she’d forgotten – that Lady Abigail was once caught up in a real life mystery, “and as you know, that’s something I’m familiar with.” It was not quite the same for Lady Abigail.

It was two years after World War 2 had ended and Lady Abigail was sailing on the Queen Mary, one night away from docking in New York City.

*CUE TRAVELLING BACKWARDS IN TIME MUSIC*

On the Queen Mary, we find a man looking distinctly concerned/beaten over the head, rushing about the corridors until he staggers into the pursers office. He asks to see the captain but the purser has no idea where he is, instead suggesting a trip to the ship’s hospital to fix the cut on Mr Danikan’s head. Mr Danikan hands him a note, orders him to have it telegraphed immediately and rushes off.

Up in the ship’s bar, Lady Abigail herself is kicking back with a champagne while Edwin Chancellor (played by Robert Vaughn whom as we all know in my head was in BASEketball,  this episode of Murder, She Wrote and some things that weren’t BASEketball) sucks up and begs her to come and write for his detective radio show, a thing she seems disinclined to do.

You know I hate to bring facts into this, but Abigail is being played by June Havoc, aka the real life Baby June from Gypsy, which was turned into a musical starring Angela Lansbury #Lansception

You know I hate to bring facts into this, but Abigail is being played by June Havoc, aka the real life Baby June from Gypsy, which starred Angela Lansbury as Rose #Lansception

They are soon joined by Captain Oliver, who is cruising about the bar making sure everyone is nice and boozed, probably. Before he can partake, there is a crash through the doors – it’s Danikan and he’s been stabbed. He shouts “Kapitan” a few times then collapses, dead.

Back in New York word about the murder has reached a certain newspaper office where Christy McGinn is trying to convince his boss to let him write more than just the crossword puzzles. Krumholtz wants nothing to do with him – until he finds out that the detective in charge is Christy’s father Martin McGinn, and that the ship is currently sitting in quarantine at the docks in New York.

On board, people are somewhat displeased at not being allowed off the ship. One such passenger, Arthur Bishop, begs the officer standing guard but the officer is unmoved. Orders are orders and all that jazz. Down below, Lieuteneant McGinn is getting the pursers statement (inexplicably with Edwin Chancellor) when words trickles down that Christy is trying to get on board the ship. Martin tells the captain to let him on. Christy is excited to tell his father about his new assignment covering the case but Martin is less enthusiastic, until Edwin offers to escort Christy to the gangway at which time Martin declares Christy stays. Edwin tells them all about how he’s a material witness due to seeing Danikan collapse in the bar with Lady Abigail, and on hearing about Lady Abigail’s presence on the ship Christy takes off to the A deck to meet her.

Up on deck Paul Viscard wheels his father Henri around, while Eleanor Cantrell and Daniel Maguire pretend like they don’t know each other while dealing with the fact that their affair is continuing a little longer. Christy finds Lady Abigail sunning herself, and confesses himself a huge fan of her books. Upon learning his name Lady Abigail declares herself to be a massive fan of his crossword puzzles and is delighted that they will be working together to solve the case. She tells him what the purser told Martin McGinn, with the added bonus of knowing what the message was that Danikan wanted sent – it was a note to his wife saying he was under the weather but that Sikorsky says hello and that they met him in Vienna in 1937.

Christy doesn’t see the significance until Lady Abigail tells him that CLEARLY Sikorsky is Andrei Sikorsky, legendary chess player presumed killed during the war. She shows him a book containing details of the match between Sikorsky and another player Von Richter, in which Sikorsky won after pulling a stunt that became known as Sikorsky’s Ploy. CLEARLY, Abigail explains, Danikan is Sikorsky! Or Von Richter! Or someone else being pursued by Sikorsky or Von Richter!

KEEP UP CHRISTY (or as I am calling him, 80s Alan Tudyk)

KEEP UP CHRISTY (or as I am calling him, 80s Alan Tudyk)

Christy is summoned by his father so he escorts Lady Austin inside, while unbeknownst to either of them Edwin Chancellor lurks on the gangway above them, eavesdropping on their entire conversation. Martin McGinn has already made progress on the motive and introduces them to US Treasury Agent Lennihan, who is less than enthused about sharing state secrets but informs them that Danikan was not Danish, but German.

“By the name of Von Richter I believe?” Says Lady Abigail.

“His name was Otto Krietzmann and he was an ex Gestapo officer.” Says Lennihan.

But points for trying,

But points for trying,

According to Lennihan, Danikan/Kreitzmann was part of a Nazi operation during the war to print millions of counterfeit US dollars to debase the currency and plunge the country into chaos. Before they could enact their Evil Plan of Evil, the war ended. The plates were presumed lost until word got out two months earlier that the plates were going to be smuggled into America by a gang of ex-Gestapo officers including Danikan and his wife. Scotland Yard were on the case and had trailed him as far as Heathrow but lost him. They only learned of his presence on the Queen Mary a day after it had sailed. Christy asks the captain if there were many people who booked to sail at the last minute. The captain says he believes so, and will check the books.

Meanwhile, Edwin Chancellor has taken it upon himself to start investigating passenger rooms below decks before being busted by passenger Nicholas Crane. Martin McGinn and the captain are called, and Chancellor informs them that despite knowing noone on board Danikan had been seen playing chess with Crane. Crane tells them he doesn’t know anything and they let him go, much to Chancellor’s horror. He tells them they are making a big mistake, that Crane is CLEARLY an alias for Von Richter and Danikan is really Sikorsky but the captain informs him that Danikan’s real name is Otto Kreitzmann and is about to start telling him about the counterfeit plate when McGinn shushes him and orders Chancellor to bugger off (or something to that affect).

The purser appears with the list of people who booked after Danikan/Kreitzmann, and they note that Nicholas Crane was one of them. Another was Arthur Bishop, the man trying desperately to get off the boat earlier. They interview him and he reveals he is a fashion designer and in his portfolio are designs for the New Look and he has to get off the ship.

“The New Look? What happened to the old one?” Asks Martin.

Heh heh heh

Heh heh heh

Christy asks the not altogether ridiculous question, if he was in such a rush to get to America why didn’t he fly?

“Because I’m not convinced the Wright Brothers got it right. Call me a skeptical coward.” Says Arthur.

They let Arthur return to his cabin, amid his protests that if his clothing line was affected he would be suing (much to the interest of the man working behind the bar). Martin McGinn calls for the next late booker to be brought forward, but Paul Viscard and his father are currently arguing with Agent Lennihan. The captain, Marty and Christy go to investigate, but Lady Abigail declines, saying she would speak to another late booker, Eleanor Cantrell,

You heard the Lady.

You heard the Lady.

Henri and Paul Viscard are strongly objecting to having their things searched, although since Paul Viscard did not come aboard with luggage it’s not really affecting him all that much. He tells the McGinns that he came on board at the last minute to ensure his father’s safe passage to Baltimore, where he would stay with his daughter. Henri tells them he was in his cabin with his son at the time of the murder, and that he was in fourth class due to first class being sold out.

Out on deck Lady Abigail’s cunning interrogation of Eleanor Cantrell manages to establish she is a nurse in the army, travelling alone on a week’s furlough and is returning on the next crossing back to Lancaster. She spots Daniel McGuire at the rail and excuses herself to go and talk to him – there’s a small matter of the steward delivering her six hundred bucks (the fare for the journey), which Daniel has given her since she can’t afford the trip.

Edwin Chancellor pops up just in time to critique Lady Abigail’s interrogation techniques when Arthur Bishop throws himself, and his suitcase, over the side. Daniel shouts man overboard and dives in after him. They manage to retrieve Daniel, who they expect will make a full recovery, but the fate of Arthur Bishop and his suitcase remain unknown. Eleanor stops in to see how Daniel is, but declines Edwin Chancellor’s invitation of a visit, and rushes away when he starts questioning her. Edwin excuses himself, saying he has something to check on. Christy reappears and confirms Abigail’s suspicion that Eleanor and Daniel were having an affair. The murderer, she was convinced, was someone else.

Christy goes to talk to Henri and Paul again and Henri confesses that he didn’t get a first class cabin because he is completely broke, and that he is emigrating to America, not seeing his daughter. His daughter, along with one of his sons, were killed in the war, leaving nothing for him in Europe.

Abigail reappears with the startling revelation that she’s solved the murder. She leads him out on deck with Nicholas Crane and tells him Crane knows all about the chess game referred to in Danikan’s note – Sikorsky sacrificed his bishop to lure Von Richter into a false sense of security and the game was mate in seven. A scream from the other end of the ship reveals that body of Arthur Bishop has been found. Christy tells his father that Abigail has solved the case, and gets him to gather everyone in the forward drawing room. Christy himself goes to get Edwin Chancellor from Stateroom 7, where he finds Chancellor on the phone, the door unlocked. Christy asks him if he always keeps the door unlocked and he says he has nothing worth stealing.

In the forward drawing room, Edwin Chancellor takes the floor. He’s convinced that the reason Danikan was shouting kapitan at the time of his murder was because he was murdered by a captain – Daniel Maguire. He might not be a captain now, but he was at the time he would have come across Otto Kreitzmann during the war when Maguire was part of an advanced company that took Gestapo headquarters, and he wasn’t in his cabin at the time of the murder like he says he was.

Eleanor comes clean with the truth – he was in her cabin. They were in love after she nursed him back to health during the war. Couple that with the fact that Kreitzmann wasn’t in Berlin when Daniel’s company took the Gestapo HQ.

But points for trying.

But points for trying.

Abigail takes over – CLEARLY Chancellor was wrong. OBVIOUSLY Bishop killed Kreitzmann, it was all in the note Kreitzmann sent, about BISHOPS and IAN BISHOP WORKED FOR MAJESTY FASHIONS. SO MANY CHESS CLUES GUYS IT WAS OBVIOUS.

Case seemingly closed, and with the missing plate at the bottom of the river, the passengers are free to go. Christy asks his father and Lennihan to accompany him down to Chancellor’s staterooms, where he lifts the carpet to reveal the missing plate. Because MATE IN 7 and FEELING UNDER THE WEATHER clearly means THE MATE OF THE COUNTERFEIT PLATE IS IN STATEROOM 7 UNDER THE CARPET BENEATH THE BAROMETER.

Whatever guys. That does leave the small matter of who killed Kreitzmann, since clearly Arthur Bishop had nothing to do with it. Fortunately the killer has just come forward to confess.

Right. Well, that's a thing.

Right. Well, that’s that then.

Paul recognised Otto Kreitzmann as the man who killed his brother, so bought a ticket and killed Kreitzmann. Game over. Captain Olliver vows to take him back to England, where he will stand trial for killing a Nazi scumbag and presumably get a slap on the back rather than a slap on the wrists.

Case closed. Daniel Macguire discovers that his wife has left him for a lumberjack and so is free to be with Eleanor, and more importantly, Christy never writes the story for the newspaper, so Lady Abigail Austin never finds out that her solution to the mystery was wrong. Because presumably noone reports on the fact that Paul Viscard gets tried for the murder of Otto Kreitzmann?

Oh never mind. Here’s a picture of Our Heroine being amazing as always.

Later gang!

Later gang!

 

S03E14 – Murder in a Minor Key

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JB has had a rough day, Fletcherfans. She spent all day fighting with the power company, got home, and now has to spend all night telling us the story of her new book, Murder in a Minor Key. Even worse, she has to wear the “slippers” that World’s Worst Nephew Grady bought her:

Heeled slippers. Good work Grady. *facepalm*

Heeled slippers. Good work Grady. *facepalm*

But never mind all that because it’s storytime!

The place is a university in Southern California. Michael Prentiss is a budding film composer. His best friend is a soft spoken law student from the deep south named Chad Singer and a quirky young lady from New York named Jenny Coopersmith. (This is awesome, JB is practically writing this post for me. Booyah!) The gang are at their favourite campus bar, chilling out when the lady at the piano starts playing a song from a upcoming Broadway musical. Michael thinks it sounds familiar, and he’s got good reason: he wrote it. Outraged, he goes to see the only other person who has seen Michael’s music  – his professor, Tyler Stoneham.

After Mike crashes his orchestra rehearsal Stoneham agrees to meet him in his office, where he doesn’t deny stealing the music and submitting it under the fake name Alden Gilbert. He tells Michael to do his worst – noone will believe him and Stoneham will see to it that Michael never works in the industry ever again. To conclude, he’s a dick. Just as Michael informs the professor that if he has to, he’ll settle things himself, Professor Papasian comes in. (Fun fact, he’s being played by Rene Auberjonois, whose surname I simply cannot pronounce and so refer to as Rene Aubergine)

The next morning, Professor Dick is kicking back in his Dick Palace with his wife Christine, who has a bone to pick herself. Seems Professor Dick wasn’t in San Diego all these weekends like he said he was, and she’d like an explanation/the other woman’s name.

Professor Dick is amused.

Ugh

Ugh

He breaks the record for being a condescending arse, pats her on the head (HE ACTUALLY DOES THIS, UGH WHAT A DICK) and tells her she has nothing to worry about. Meanwhile, across town, Reagan Miller has just discovered courtesy of the newspaper that the Alden Gilbert she was working with was actually Professor Dick.

That night, a protest breaks out at the campus for reasons. (Like most campus protests in my experience). The Vice-Chancellor is not pleased and orders the unofficial leader of the protest, campus newspaper editor Danny Young, to shut it down. He doesn’t, for the record.

While the protest rages, Michael goes into the Music building to look for his copy of the music Dick stole. He hears Dick on the phone in his office so decides to wait in the instrument storage room and wait for the light on Dick’s extension to go out. Dick ends the call but tries another number almost immediately. It seems not to connect, so Michael sees his chance but as he opens the door he sees Professor Papasian lurch into Dick’s office. Seems Dick has pissed off another one and forgotten to include Papasian’s name on their music dictionary. DICK MOVE, WHAT A DICK etc.

Michael, waiting patiently in the storage room and watching the protest decides to make his move, and goes into Dick’s office to look for his music. Unfortunately he fails to spot Dick’s corpse lying on the floor. The security guard who comes in to check on the office doesn’t though, and promptly arrests Michael.

JB’s not going easy on this kid. His music’s been stolen and now he’s arrested for a murder he didn’t commit.

There's definitely whiskey in that tea.

There’s definitely whiskey in that tea.

Michael’s friend Chad goes to visit him in jail to get the full story. Michael convinces him of his innocence and so Chad, along with his girlfriend Jenny (previously seen in Grease as Marty Maraschino, you know, like the cherry) vow to clear their friend’s name.

Chad goes to see Danny the newspaper editor to get background info on everyone via old copies of the paper. He learns that Dick’s wife Christine used to be rather friendly with the Vice-Chancellor back in the day, and accordingly asks him about it. The Vice-Chancellor tells him they were friends only, and sternly hopes that Chad doesn’t feel the need to query him again.

Next on Chad’s hit list is Professor Papasian, the last person to see Professor Dick alive. He gives Chad the tour of the music department, explaining that the Dickphone would ring in his office and the instrument room. He feels badly about telling the police about Michael’s argument with Dick, but is scandalised when Chad brings up the Professor’s own fight with Dick the night he died.

That night Chad and Jenny compare notes. Jenny tells Chad that she has tracked down the producer of the play containing Michael’s stolen music, but that no one has seen him for a few days. Chad realises that Professor Dick and Alden Gilbert are the same person, and wonders who else knows. The next morning he goes to see the newly widowed Mrs Dick, Christine, who tells him about Dick’s trips to San Diego. She also tells him that she called her husband the night he died, during the commercial break of a show she was watching around 9:45pm, when he told her he was waiting for Professor Papasian and the galley of his book. As Chad takes his leave via the front door, the Vice-Chancellor appears from upstairs, wondering what Chad wanted. Christine almost thinks Chad was accusing her of murder.

I’m not sure what JB thinks of Chad’s detecting skills.

Although to be fair to Chad, JB wrote the book.

Although to be fair to Chad, JB wrote the book.

Meanwhile, back on campus, Professor Papasian is celebrating being promoted to the head of the faculty by eating an invisible carrot.

It's definitely not an aubergine.

It’s definitely not an aubergine.

His invisible carrot eating is interrupted by mysterious noises coming from Dick’s office. Upon closer investigation he finds Dick’s Broadway producer pal Max Hellinger looking for the songs Professor Dick owed him. He offers five grand to Professor Papasian to find them in 48 hours.

At home, Chad finds Jenny playing one of the songs and wondering who wrote the lyrics (clearly not Professor Dick). Chad remembers what Mrs Dick said about San Diego and asks Jenny to suss out all the calls made from Dick’s office to San Diego, in the hope that they can flush out the mystery lyricist.

Speaking of Mrs Dick, she’s just got home from banging the Vice-Chancellor and is completely unaware of Professor Papasian ransacking her late husband’s office looking for the missing music. Until he knocks something over, she shoots wildly with a gun and Papasian smashes through the window.

Chad gets a phone call from Danny the next morning, and has a fairly good guess as to who the man ransacking the house might have been. He confronts Papasian who admits to breaking in to look for the missing music. Chad tracks down Max the producer, who tells him that he didn’t see Dick the night he died, he only spoke to him on the phone around 9:30pm, when Dick said he was waiting for a phone call. They made breakfast plans but Dick never showed, on account of being dead.

Chad goes home and is surprised to find Jenny looking pleased with herself – she’d tracked down the missing lyricist, Reagan. She tells them that she was at the campus that night, but she couldn’t find Professor Dick’s office and then the police were all over the place by ten o’clock so she left. She takes her leave, saying she’s got get home to record a jingle she wrote for a commercial which gives Chad an idea.

Today the role of Chad’s idea will be played by my crappy drawing of a lightbulb.

Oh Chad.

Oh Chad.

JB is less enthused with Chad’s breakthrough.

MOAR WHISKEY.

MOAR WHISKEY.

JB has left a massive clue for us to solve this case. I’ll be honest, the first time I watched this I was so c0nfused that JB wasn’t solving it that I didn’t really pay attention to anything else. But, she did in fact leave a clue and thanks to a helpful recreation of the evening’s events Chad proves who the killer is.

But the Dick had it coming, so fair enough really.

But the Dick had it coming, so fair enough really.

Chad’s amazing recreation of events sufficiently proved that Mrs Dick didn’t call her husband, she stabbed him with a tuning fork.

Now, if you’ll excuse JB, she’s just had an idea for a sequel involving Chad, Jenny, a defrocked priest and a professional wrestler who walk into a bar…

Later gang!

Later gang!