Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Murder, She Wrote

I hate to admit it but I'm hooked on re-runs of Murder, She Wrote, starring Angela Lansbury. The show which ran from 1984 to 1996 for twelve seasons -- that's no mean feat -- is addictive! Don't ask me why I never watched it at the time. I well remember when it aired that I'd see it coming on and thought it looked quaint and interesting, but it wasn't for me -- until now that is.

At the moment it's being shown on both BBC2 and UK Drama TV channels and I'm having a ball.

Mind you, would you want to be a friend of Jessica Fletcher? I mean every episode someone is killed [there's at least one corpse, sometimes more] and more often than not it's a friend's husband who gets it. Or if not, it's a friend of a close acquaintance. If I knew Jessica [or J.B.Fletcher as she's known in author-land] I'd be petrified to invite her to a dinner party at my home.

In all the episodes I've seen so far, although there is mention of her being a famous author, I've yet to see her write anything, except when the show starts and the credits roll. She types on an old-fashioned typewriter, okay, I don't think lap taps were around then, but computers and word processers were, so her writing should be very time consuming. All that carbon copying and use of the Tippex bottle! So, how does she get the time to solve all these mysteries when her editor wants the proofs of her latest novel on his desk?

I edited three books last year and I have to tell you I had little time for anything else, except sleeping and eating maybe, let alone running around after strangers to find out if they are the murderer, and often times on foreign shores from her native Cabot Cove. So far, I've seen her solve crimes in New York, London, Hong Kong, The Caribbean as well as Cabot Cove.

My favourite episode, thus far is

Episode # 19
Mar. 17--Murder Takes the Bus
Guests: Linda Blair, Michael Constantine, Rue McClanahan
Synopsis: Jessica's bus trip to Portland, Maine, takes a dismal turn when a passenger is murdered.

Tom Bosley [who played Mr. Cunningham in Happy Days], features as the Sheriff and do you detect another well known face from the guest list? None other than Linda Blair, the girl from the Exorcist! Imagine her sitting next to you on the bus! If you tried to look out the window you'd probably see her head violently spinning around and imagine the dry cleaning bills from all that green gunk she'd spew over your clothes!

I love Murder, She Wrote for all it's daftness. It's of it's time, and that I think, is part of its charm.