After a noted author speaks before a group of local Midsomer writers, the naked body of the event's host is found bludgeoned to death in his bedroom.



(novel), (screenplay)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Daniel Casey ...
Jane Wymark ...
Honoria Lyddiard
Amy Lyddiard
David Troughton ...
Max Jennings
Jane Booker ...
Laura Hutton
Judith Scott ...
Sue Clapper
Robert Swann ...
Gerald Hadleigh
Selina Jennings
Annoushka Le Gallois ...
Barbara Neale
Mrs. Bundy


The Midsomer Worthy Writers Circle invites well-known author Max Jennings to one of their monthly meetings. The group's secretary, Gerald Hadleigh is opposed to to the invitation, but is outvoted. It becomes apparent that Jennings and Hadleigh knew one another at one time. When Hadleigh is found dead the next day, Barnaby and Troy begin looking into the backgrounds of the various Circle members and try to locate Jennings. When they do find him he is, as they say, incapable of assisting them with their inquiries. A second murder adds to the puzzle but in the end, the solution rests on learning of long ago events and a hidden family secret. At home, the Barnaby's agree to care for daughter Cully's Russian Blue cat Killmouskie, with interesting results for Tom. Written by garykmcd

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Crime | Drama | Mystery

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Release Date:

5 July 1998 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?


Frederick Forsyth gets a (perjorative) mention in this but he enjoyed it so much that he wrote about it in his Daily Express column. He deliberately misnamed Midsomer Worthy as "Midsomer Jockstrap" and he described the whole series as "amiable tosh". See more »


Honoria Lyddiard is pronounced dead but is still breathing as well. See more »


[first lines]
Liam's Father: Liam. Liam? What are you doing with that? Liam? Liam. Liam!
See more »


References Dixon of Dock Green (1955) See more »

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User Reviews

I Was Astonished!
30 January 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

After watching the first episode of this series and being impressed with it, I thought that it would drop off. As it turns out, this episode was as good as any television I've seen. It involves a writer's group that invites a successful novelist to speak to them. They are an odd bunch, either treating him with antagonism or aloofness. Some are downright rude. One of the men who had asked that they not invite this guy has his head bashed in sometime after the meeting. It turns out that he had had a relationship with this writer. What follows are a group of fascinating figures who interact, each with their own mystery story traits, leading to one of the most unsettling conclusions I've seen. The two investigators have to fight duplicity among all these people. Also, the writer has a secret. There are several subplots that eventually align. I love being manipulated by clever plots and twists that pull the rug from under me, and this one did that. I am so excited that there are over a hundred of these episodes to pick from. I know they can't all live up to this one, but there is excellent chemistry.

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