The normally friendly village of Lymston is plagued by vile anonymous letters. When a mother of three takes her own life, following such a letter, Ms. Marple is not at all convinced things are as they seem.
A friend of Miss Marple's sees a woman being strangled in a passing train. When police cannot find a body and doubt the story, Miss Marple enlists professional housekeeper, Lucy Eyelesbarrow, to go undercover.
While on vacation at a resort hotel in the West Indies, Miss Marple correctly suspects that the apparently natural death of a retired British major is actually the work of a murderer planning yet another killing.
Based on Agatha Christie's original work, this limited series chronicles the adventures of Tommy and Prudence "Tuppence" Beresford as the duo take over operations of a London detective agency. Each installment of the show follows one of the mini-mysteries from the "Partners in Crime" short stories, seeing the newlyweds hot on the trail of missing jewels, poltergeists, poisoned chocolates, and more. Written by
Three of the stories in the original PARTNERS IN CRIME mystery story anthology were not made into TV shows; they were "The Adventure of the Sinister Stranger," "Blindman's Buff," and "The Man Who was No. 16." These stories comprise an ongoing case that spans the anthology. The introductory story, "A Fairy in the Flat" not only has the Beresfords asked to take over The International Detective Agency, but reveals that the agency's former manager, Theodore Blunt, was a part of a spy ring, and the Beresfords are tasked with intercepting coded messages. The three unadapted stories find the Beresfords threatened by various spies and eventually, discovering the identity of agent No. 16. The book ends with them closing the detective agency and Tuppence announcing she is pregnant. See more »
I read a few other reviews, of this series, & felt like saying that they seemed to miss the point. Being familiar with the original novel "The Secret Adversary" (which was made into a full-length TV feature after these) as well as the "Partners in Crime" short stories I believe that those involved with this series captured the spirit the author intended very well indeed.
The tone of the original stories was much lighter than that of other Agatha Christie novels and the playfulness & risque humor (which come across clearly in the dramatizations) came right from the characters in the books. I also believe the overly stylized performances were perfect for the period & mood of the pieces. The acting actually comes across more as a good staging of a Bernard Shaw or Oscar Wilde play in the style of the early 20th century than as a current modern TV program & I for one completely enjoyed the contrast.
2 side notes: I've purchased these on DVD as well as the sets of the Poirot series & while the Poirot are exceptional (wonderfully made & acted) I actually enjoy re-watching the "Partners in Crime" Series more because the emphasis is much less on the crime than on the characters, compared to the Poirot series which always seems to need a twist (right out of Christie) and some kind of action/chase sequence (not so much from Christie).
Also, I'd personally love to see James Warwick and Francesca Annis reprise these roles 20 years on, since there were several novels ("By the Pricking of my Thumbs" and "Postern of Fate" are the two I remember) which caught up with Tommy & Tuppence later in their lives.
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