Accompanying Inspector Japp to Brussels, who is receiving an award from the Belgian government, Hercule Poirot tells him a case from 20 years before. Poirot was a young policeman at the time and at the request of Virginie Mesnard, agrees to investigate the death of rising young politician, Paul Deroulard. The courts had already ruled that he had died of a heart attack, but she believes he was murdered. Poirot believed Deroulard had been poisoned, likely from a box of chocolates he had been given by an aristocrat, Xavier St. Alard. In the end, Poirot identified the killer, even obtaining a confession, but chose not to make it public, for reasons that he explains to his colleagues. Written by
The filming locations are carefully chosen as some of the finest in Brussels. However, when Poirot and Japp arrive in "Gare de Bruxelles" - Brussels station, it is actually filmed in Antwerp. Brussels South station, as it would have been for Poirot to arrive from England, has been demolished in the 1950s. Other locations include the Grand Place (bronze statue of t'Serclaes), the tramway museum in Brussels Woluwe, the Cinquantenaire park and triumphal arch, the St-Jan and St-Stephanuschurch. Furthermore the court scenes were filmed in the Brussels Palais of Justice, which was the biggest built in the 19th century in Europe at the time. See more »
Can't you understand! It's our future and Belgium's future that I'm thinking of! The Catholic church has narrowed your mind, Marianne, just as it has my mother's.
But don't you see, Paul? You keep asking me to choose between *you* and my *faith*.
I can't believe what you're saying, Marianne. You mean fresh ideas have no place in your mind? My God, we're into a new century, but you are *stuck* in the last! Just like your damned clergy.
Attacking the church won't help Belgium, Paul. ...
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I've watched nearly every episode of the Poirot series as well as some of the film versions and have loved most of them, but this episode stunned me with its rich, authentic period settings, Suchet's ability to portray the young and the mature Poirot equally convincingly, the graceful, unobtrusive background music -- all in all, I kept thinking I was watching a full-budget movie. I simply loved it and will watch it again to enjoy again the exquisite care for detail that make this such a fine series and this a particularly fine episode. I had just one quibble, that bothered me only because the episode is otherwise so perfect. A jeweled lapel pin worn by Poirot that features in the background story appears to have violet flowers in most scenes, but in a flashback when he first receives it, the flowers look decidedly pink or coral. If anyone can explain this discrepancy, I'd appreciate it, just so I can say, "Utterly perfect"!
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