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 (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The first movie viewed by Cust with great fascination when he began to think to be the killer is Black Limelight with Raymond Massey. 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 »
Train now boarding.
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The book is a good one and it has been well dramatized here. Donald Sumpter is excellent as the travelling salesman, Cust.
It's unlike other Christies in that most of the victims are not wealthy or aristocratic. The scenes in the Andover shop and at Bexhill are (perhaps unintentionally) touching. The deaths are really sad -- which is almost never the case in a Christie book, where murder is only a chance for an interesting puzzle and the victim is quite often a nasty tyrant whom almost everyone wants dead. When Hastings is moved by the scene in Andover, Poirot brushes his comments aside, saying they must not succumb to sentimentality.
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