When one of Jessica's former students brings a play based on her novel to Broadway, she finds herself in the middle of a war between two rival critics.


(as E. W. Swackhamer)


(created by), (created by) | 4 more credits »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Jessica Fletcher
Jason Richards
Walter Knapf
Shayne Grant
Barbara Blair
Barney Mapost
Denise Quinlan
Lt. Aloyius Jarvis
Eliot Easterbrook
Ed Cullen
John DiSanti ...
Danny O'Mara
Penny Santon ...
Mrs. Rizzo
Don Correia ...
Shayne's Assistant
R.J. Arterburn ...
Sergeant (as R. J. Arterburn)
Robert Rigamonti ...
Maitre D'


Producer Shayne Grant mounts Walter Knapf's reworking 'Mainely Murder' of one of his former teacher JB Fletcher's mystery plays. Only after the pre-Broadway-premiere-interviews Walter admits he was railroaded into appalling changes. The critics do a damned destructive job on the play, worst of all ever-condescending TV columnist Eliot Easterbrook. Shortly after, the Chronicle newspaper critic Danny O'Mara, who gave the only glowing review attacking Elliot's, is found murdered after Easterbrook shouted he should be permanently silenced. Jessica and the NYPD work their way through suspects among cast, crew and critical body, starting with Eliot who was found there holding a gun but has a TV alibi, only to find the killer after examining notes and computer files. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

1 May 1988 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Rich Little's character says that he has an ability to mimic the writing styles of various critics. Little is a professional impressionist, performing impressions of, among others, every U.S. president since Kennedy and several celebrities. See more »


Though the Play based on JB Fletcher's book is stated several times to be opening on Broadway, outside the theatre after the starting credits, you can clearly see the stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Also, the interior of the theatre matches no Broadway house of the period. See more »

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User Reviews

Jessica on Broadway
30 July 2017 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Miles Chapin is one of Jessica Fletcher's former creative writing students who has adapted one of her mysteries as a Broadway play which brings her down from Cabot Cove to see the opening.

But on opening night prominent critic John DiSanti who gave the play a good review was shot to death in his apartment. Everyone from director Lloyd Bochner to producer Carole Cook is suspected especially after the review is found to be a phony. But of course the suspicion settles on Chapin and there's Angela Lansbury ever ready to defend one of her former pupils.

Stealing this whole episode is this cynical critic and mortal enemy of DiSanti, Dean Stockwell. You really are in awe of how much of a hateful soul Stockwell is and how he even spurns Lansbury's offers to help him when he's under suspicion.

Good episode of a note so good view of the Great White Way.

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