The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes: Season 1, Episode 5

The Illustrious Client (21 Mar. 1991)

TV Episode  |   |  Crime, Drama, Horror
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Violet Merville is determined to marry the man she loves, who Holmes knows has already murdered one wife.



(by) (as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle) , (dramatised by), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Illustrious Client (21 Mar 1991)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Carol Noakes ...
Baroness Gruner
David Langton ...
Abigail Cruttenden ...
Rosalie Williams ...
John Pickles ...
Roy Holder ...
Andy Bradford ...
First Thug


Holmes is hired by Sir James Damery to do anything he can to stop the forthcoming marriage of Violet Merville, daughter of a famed General, to Baron Gruner, a known philanderer and womanizer who has been known to seduce - and perhaps even dispose of - well-to-do women on the Continent. The young woman is madly in love with him and will hear nothing against him. It's also apparent that Sir James is acting as an intermediary for someone else, whom he refuses to reveal. The Baron is soon onto Holmes' attempt to discredit him and he is not above hiring ruffians to get rid of troublemakers. Homes recruits one of the Baron's discarded women to try and convince Miss Merville of her ill-advised romance but it is only when he learns that Gruner has a diary does he find the weapon he needs. Written by garykmcd

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21 March 1991 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?


The prop book of Baron Gruner's affairs is full of detailed records thoroughly written in correct German language. See more »


In one scene, Baron Gruner is listening to a recording of a baritone singing the "Madamina" aria from Mozart's "Don Giovanni", and the singer is backed by a full orchestra. Such recordings were impossible to make in the nineteenth century, when the story takes place. Until the advent of electrical recording (i.e., using microphones) in 1925, singers and instrumentalists had to stand around a large horn to make recordings, and the use of a large orchestra would have distorted the sound. Special "chamber music" arrangements had to be made of orchestral pieces to prevent distortion and overload. Recordings were made on wax cylinders then, not discs, and the quality of sound was far worse than demonstrated in this episode. See more »


[first lines]
Baron Gruner: Oh. Oh, my dear. My dearest. I warned you; I said, "Do not go too near the edge."
Baroness Gruner: Why did you push me, Baron?
Baron Gruner: My dear wife... you, you're dreaming.
Baroness Gruner: No. Dying. Dying.
Baron Gruner: Oh, my darling.
See more »


Version of Sherlock Holmes: The Illustrious Client (1965) See more »

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User Reviews

I Could Just Shake Her!
15 February 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is one of those cases where the Holmes/Watson team is faced with an adversary which they can't seem to conquer. It is in reality a young woman whom they are trying to help. Her father has sent an emissary to them to find a way to break up the proposed marriage of his daughter to a Baron Grunner. He is known as a murderer who has already killed wives. He is also a major operator in that he is able to entice these women into marriage without their seeing his psychotic. His method is his ability to show himself the victim of gossip and jealousy. The young woman is led to believe that those around, including her father, will try to paint the Baron as evil when, in reality, he is kind and abused. They have a dual task. They must try to dissuade her with evidence, or to find irrefutable proof for her. Unfortunately, they are under tight time restraints. The X-factor that imposes itself on this situation is a young woman who has been victimized in the past. Even here story won't change he mind of this young lady (my mother used to use the expression "I could just shake him/her"!) when dealing with irrationality. Hell hath no fury, however, and something happens to dramatically change the equation. Most villains have a weakness and it usually involves pride. This is an involving episode and well worth your time.

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