IMDb > "Agatha Christie's Poirot" The ABC Murders (1992)

"Agatha Christie's Poirot" The ABC Murders (1992)

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Agatha Christie's Poirot: Season 4: Episode 1 -- In one of Agatha Christie's most intriguing Hercule Poirot mysteries ever, the inimitable Belgian sleuth proves yet again why he is the most watch detective in the history of the PBS Mystery! series and a hit mystery favorite on A&E.      Based on the classic story by the creator of modern mystery, Agatha Christie's The ABC Murders stars David Suchet as the fastidious investigator famous for solving the most confounding cases. Without a smudge on his impeccably appointed exterior, Poirot untangles this baffling mystery of a murderer who announces his next victims through a series of chilling letters each addressed to the detective himself. Also starring Hugh Fraser as Captain Hastings and Philip Jackson as Chief Inspector Japp.


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Clive Exton (dramatized by)
View company contact information for The ABC Murders on IMDbPro.
Original Air Date:
5 January 1992 (Season 4, Episode 1)
Poirot receives clues and taunting letters from a serial killer who appears to choose his random victims and crime scenes alphabetically. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
A Faithful Television Movie Version of The Christie novel See more (10 total) »


 (Episode Cast) (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

David Suchet ... Hercule Poirot

Hugh Fraser ... Captain Hastings

Philip Jackson ... Chief Inspector Japp

Donald Sumpter ... Cust
Donald Douglas ... Franklin Clarke

Nicholas Farrell ... Donald Fraser
Pippa Guard ... Megan Barnard

Cathryn Bradshaw ... Mary Drower
Nina Marc ... Thora Grey
David McAlister ... Inspector Glen
Vivienne Burgess ... Lady Clarke
Ann Windsor ... Miss Merrion
Michael Mellinger ... Franz Ascher
Miranda Forbes ... Mrs. Turton
Peter Penry-Jones ... Superintendent Carter
Lucinda Curtis ... Mrs. Marbury
Jeremy Hawk ... Deveril
Allan Mitchell ... Dr. Kerr
Philip Anthony ... Doctor
Andrew Williamson ... Man in Library

John Breslin ... Mr. Barnard
Clifford Milner ... Constable
Claude Close ... Doncaster Sergeant
Alex Knight ... Andover Sergeant
David Fox ... Scotland Yard Sergeant (as David Richard-Fox)

Campbell Graham ... Mr. Downes
Gordon Salkilld ... Commissionaire
Norman McDonald ... Mr. Strange
Jane Birdsall ... Nurse
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Pat Gorman ... Desk Sergeant (uncredited)
Tony Red Richards ... Librarian (uncredited)

Episode Crew
Directed by
Andrew Grieve 
Writing credits
Clive Exton (dramatized by)

Agatha Christie  novel "ABC Murders" (uncredited)

Produced by
Brian Eastman .... producer
Nick Elliott .... executive producer
Donald Toms .... associate producer
Original Music by
Christopher Gunning 
Cinematography by
Chris O'Dell (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Derek Bain 
Casting by
Kate Day 
Rebecca Howard 
Production Design by
Rob Harris 
Art Direction by
Peter Wenham 
Set Decoration by
Carlotta Barrow 
Costume Design by
Barbara Kronig 
Makeup Department
Kate Bower .... makeup artist
Patricia Kirkman .... makeup artist
Hilary Martin .... makeup supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Adam Goodman .... assistant director
Becky Harris .... assistant director
Gareth Tandy .... assistant director
Art Department
Ludmilla Barras .... production buyer
Mickey Lennon .... property master (as Micky Lennon)
Les Peach .... construction manager
Garry Dawson .... dressing props (uncredited)
Sound Department
Orin Beaton .... sound assistant
Paul Botham .... boom operator
Peter Lennard .... dubbing
Sandy MacRae .... sound recordist
Mike Murr .... dubbing
Rupert Scrivener .... dubbing
David Cronnelly .... stunts
Eddie Powell .... stunts
Bill Weston .... stunts
Paul Weston .... stunts
Camera and Electrical Department
Steve Alcorn .... camera operator (as Steven Alcorn)
Frank Baber .... gaffer
Ray Cooper .... clapper/loader
John Etherington .... grip
Danny Shelmerdine .... focus puller
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Nigel Egerton .... wardrobe
Michael Price .... assistant costume designer
John Scott .... wardrobe
Vernon White .... wardrobe
Kirsten Wing .... wardrobe
Editorial Department
Andrew McClelland .... first assistant editor
Music Department
Mark Tucker .... assistant music scoring engineer (uncredited)
Other crew
John Beharrell .... accounts
Penelope Forrester .... accounts
Pat Gavin .... titles
Nigel Gostelow .... locations
Monica Rogers .... production coordinator
Scott Rowlatt .... locations
Sheila Wilson .... script supervisor

Series Crew
These people are regular crew members. Were they in this episode?
Sound Department
Lionel Strutt .... adr mixer
Other crew
Mark Albela .... location manager
Daren Thomas .... location runner
Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

103 min | UK:120 min | 102 min | UK:100 min (14 episodes)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Australia:M | Finland:K-12 (2015) | UK:PG (video rating) (1993) (2005) | USA:Not Rated

Did You Know?

The screen in the Doncaster cinema shows a train crashing into a ferry and then into the sea. This scene is from the closing minutes of the 1932 movie, "Number 17", directed by Alfred Hitchcock.See more »
Factual errors: The second victim worked at the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill, and her employer is interviewed and reveals that she had worked there for two summers. However this cannot be right as the De La Warr Pavilion only opened in December 1935 and the murders are set in 1936.See more »
[first lines]
Announcer:Train now boarding.
See more »


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23 out of 30 people found the following review useful.
A Faithful Television Movie Version of The Christie novel, 15 June 2006
Author: theowinthrop from United States

David Suchet succeeded where Charles Laughton and Tony Randall failed. Like Albert Finney and Peter Ustinov, Suchet became the definitively correct "Hercule Poirot" in a series of television versions of the Agatha Christie stories. Playing the role seriously, but brightening the role with flashes of humor, Suchet makes the eccentric former Belgian Police Chief seem real and not a caricature.

He is well supported in his series with Philip Jackson as his friend and rival Superintendent Jopp of Scotland Yard, and Hugh Fraser as Captain Hastings (Poirot's "Watson"). But it is the care of the casting director and the screen writers who have kept the series going so very well all this time.

I have chosen THE ABC MURDERS to symbolize the best work in the series in maintaining what Dame Agatha sought - an honest attempt to tell her mysteries straight and with full entertainment value. You have to compare this version with the funny but spoof version with Tony Randall called THE ALPHABET MURDERS to understand.

SPOILER COMING UP The way THE ALPHABET MURDERS was developed it is supposed (by Scotland Yard and even a confused Poirot/Randall) that the murders are committed by a woman (Anita Eckbert) with psychiatric problems. The key to the psychiatric problem seems to be that Eckbert's character is killing people off who have first and second names with the same letter, so that the murders are A.A., B.B., C.C., D.D., etc.

Now part of this is actually in the original novel. The victims of the mysterious killer do have names that follow the alphabetical pattern. But in the original there is no lovely looking "Anita Eckbert" character. There is a gentleman named "Alexander Bonaparte Cuff" (Donald Sumpter) whom pieces of evidence from the police suggest is that homicidal killer. He is a quiet, respectable type - a lover of chess. And when Poirot meets him he realizes that Cuff could not be the killer. So he reviews the killings, and finds the flaw the killer overlooked.

But it is a close case. And it involves one of the most unattractive killers in Christie's works. He is an ambitious killer, who sees a chance to make millions at everyone's expense (especially the murder victims). He also is (in the novel more than this version, unfortunately), quite a belligerent bigot - constantly referring to Poirot as a "frog" (Poirot is Belgian, not French). In the novel, when he is finally revealed by Poirot, and thwarted in a last suicide attempt, he snarls another "Dirty Frog" comment - and is told off by Poirot that given the underhanded, sneaky, and cowardly manner he used to commit his crimes he really did not live up to British standards. Figuratively, Poirot leaves some spit in the face of the killer - a rare action of retaliation by the detective. That (as I said) is not in this version, but the fact that the original story was used raises this as the best version of THE ABC MURDERS that was done.

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