Agatha Christie: Poirot: Season 4, Episode 1

The ABC Murders (5 Jan. 1992)
"Agatha Christie's Poirot" The ABC Murders (original title)

TV Episode  -   -  Drama | Mystery | Crime
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Poirot receives clues and taunting letters from a serial killer who appears to choose his random victims and crime scenes alphabetically.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Donald Douglas ...
Franklin Clarke
Pippa Guard ...
Megan Barnard
Mary Drower
Nina Marc ...
Thora Grey
David McAlister ...
Vivienne Burgess ...
Lady Clarke
Ann Windsor ...
Miss Merrion
Michael Mellinger ...
Franz Ascher
Miranda Forbes ...
Mrs. Turton
Peter Penry-Jones ...


Hastings returns to Britain after a long absence to find Poirot anxious for a new case which will challenge his gray cells. Poirot quickly gets his wish in the form of taunting letters from a serial killer who has dubbed himself ABC and who leaves an ABC railroad schedule at the scene of each crime. The victims as well as the crime scenes appear to be chosen randomly, but maintain an obsessive adherence to alphabetical order. However, Poirot grows to believe that the killer is not the madman the authorities believe, but a methodical murderer with a very tangible motive. Written by G. Taverney (

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Release Date:

5 January 1992 (UK)  »

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| (14 episodes)

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The action music from the contemporary film showing at the cinema in Doncaster is also featured in Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975), for the scene where Sir Robin encounters the three-headed knight. The piece is 'Desperate Moment' by Kenneth Essex. See more »


The programme features a number of excerpts from a supposedly contemporary "film" from 1936. The effect is strikingly well-done, except at the end of the film we can see the acting and technical credits - in a genuine 1936 film, these credits would have been shown at the beginning. See more »


[first lines]
Announcer: Train now boarding.
See more »


Features Number 17 (1932) See more »

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User Reviews

one of the best
28 October 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Poirot investigates a series of killings in "The ABC Murders" in this excellent adaptation. As Hastings reappears after an absence, Poirot receives letters from a serial killer, calling himself ABC, who tells Poirot the city where the next murder will take place. At the scene of each crime, he leaves the ABC railroad schedule. The murders seem to have the same last name initial as the name of the town.

The authorities think the killer is insane, but Poirot doesn't. He believes there is a real method to the killer's madness. It takes a while, but Poirot finally figures it out.

Wonderful, exciting adaptation, and if you haven't read the book (or like me read it a hundred years ago) it's even more thrilling since you won't know the solution.

I love Poirot, Hastings, and Japp together. Suchet is so perfect as Poirot except for one small thing. Agatha Christie came to hate Poirot. There's no way she would have hated THIS Poirot. She found him "insufferable" and an "egocentric creep." Despite being fussy, egomaniacal, and arrogant, Suchet somehow gives Poirot warmth and a camaraderie with Japp and Hastings. I just love his interpretation. You can't hate him.

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