Murder, She Wrote: Season 10, Episode 10

Murder in White (19 Dec. 1993)

TV Episode  |   |  Comedy, Crime, Drama
7.1
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Jessica comes to the rescue of her friend, actress Glenda Highsmith, who is mounting a play in Martin Kramer's London theater based on a Fletcher-mystery in a defective adaptation by the in... See full summary »

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
Pauline Brailsford ...
Detective Chief Insp. Ellen Jarvis
...
Peter Drew
...
Edward St. Cloud
...
Glenda Highsmith
...
Mae Shaughnessy
...
Lawson Childress
...
Franklin Smith
...
Sally Briggs
...
Malcolm Brooker
...
Brett Dillon
...
Martin Kramer
G.W. Stevens ...
Oliver Hopkins (as G. W. Stevens)
Jonathan Wood ...
Insp. Ernest Martindale
Edmund L. Shaff ...
Lester Perth (as Edmund L Shaff)
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Storyline

Jessica comes to the rescue of her friend, actress Glenda Highsmith, who is mounting a play in Martin Kramer's London theater based on a Fletcher-mystery in a defective adaptation by the in principle uncooperative dramatist Mae Shaughnessy with her younger house-mate Brett Dillon. Jessica and others get strange calls from Empire magazine reporter Malcolm Brooker about an affair between Glenda and John Camden, the 17th earl Glenhaven. The actors have their own bothers- waning glory Lawson Childress is drinking a bit much, worrying about Glenda; rising start Franklin Smith fears he is to be replaced and his girlfriend Sally Briggs is told it would take her pleasing Kramer more intimately the she's prepared to do. Director Peter Drew tells Jessica Glenda can't concentrate because of Kramer who is called by phone to the props basement and stabbed to death. Stage manager Oliver Hopkins finds him; Scotland Yard's Detective Chief Inspector Ellen Jarvis investigates. Her friend tells Jessica ... Written by KGF Vissers

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19 December 1993 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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What Not to Wear to Avoid Murder Suspicion
5 December 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

While we often notice a "MSW" guest star in the swan song appearance of his/her career, this episode in the middle of Season Ten marks a few debut performances, as the first television role for Gale Van Cott, and first acting credit for Nick Meaney, Sean Howse and G.W. Stevens, as well as the second of two roles thus far for Jonathan Wood.

Several cast members of this London-based episode actually hail from the States, while the few British performers among them include Jean Marsh, Pauline Brailsford, Ian Ogilvy and Jim Piddock.

Actress Glenda Highsmith (Jean Marsh) headlines a theatrical troupe, preparing to present a stage adaptation based upon a mystery written by her dear old friend Jessica Fletcher (Angela Lansbury), entitled "Murder in White."

Glenda confides her secrets and apprehensions about returning to the stage with her confidante, Edward St. Cloud (Norman Lloyd), who's also aware that Glenda shares her living quarters with her young adult male companion, Brett Dillon (Tim Ransom), whom Jessica proudly meets upon her arrival to London, England, UK, during play rehearsals.

Scenist Mae Shaughnessy (Anne Meara) contributes to the company more than her script-writing proclivity. She also assists with wardrobe, as well as running interference between the cast and crew its overbearing producer, Martin Kramer (Robin Sachs), who seems to enjoy cutting everyone down to size.

Director Peter Drew (Davis Gaines), Stage Manager Oliver Hopkins (G.W. Stevens), and two who are fond of each other's company, Actress Sally Briggs (Dedee Pfeiffer) and Actor Franklin Smith (Michael Palance), all experience put-downs as they attempt to deliver attempts to act professionally.

Actor Lawson Childress (Ian Ogilvy, in an atypical unglamorous role from his usual suave "MSW" persona), meanwhile, drinks away his problems, carrying a flask to the set, seeming to waste away in the stairwell, after being slated for the leading man role, and then dropped from the play.

Malcolm Brooker (Jim Piddock), under the guise of a reporter, confronts Glenda with the notion that he has uncovered the secret identity of Brett Dillon, as the unrecognized son of the now-ailing John Camden, the Seventeenth Earl of Glenhaven, thus creating additional frustration for Glenda on the eve of Jessica's arrival.

Lester Perth (Edmund L. Shaff) is one of the associates who meets with the troupe's cast and crew members at Binkie's Tavern, when a disagreement erupts after Jessica arrives, and Glenda asks to be excused from the evening's festivities. Jessica remains on hand to grow a bit familiar with some of those associated with her dear old friend in trouble.

"Murder in White" is costumed to present a lady wearing a trench-coat of this color, along with hat and sunglasses to conceal her identity as a perpetrator of murder. But that rainy night, after sightings of various ladies wearing trench-coats around the theatre, a body is discovered in the basement wardrobe storage room, with a trench-coat missing from its locked compartment.

Scotland Yard Detective Chief Inspector Ellen Jarvis (Pauline Brailsford) and Scotland Yard Inspector Ernest Martindale (Jonathan Wood) initially forbid Jessica's snooping about the basement, but soon welcome their assistance after arresting the wrong suspect, and finding themselves at a loss for clues, which Jessica begins to uncover once permitted to investigate at will.

The cast is rounded out by Gale Van Cott as Policewoman, Sean Howse as Policeman #1, and Nick Meaney as Waiter at Binkie's.


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