After a visit to Parade film studios with his friend Captain Hastings, Poirot finds himself investigating the murder of Henry Reedburn, the head of the studio. Reedburn was something of a tyrant who had fired a veteran actor, taken over a major film from a young director and had recently blackmailed actress Valerie Saintclair into signing a new contract. Upon finding the body, Saintclair ran to a neighboring house to seek help, interrupting the Oglander family's bridge game in the process. However, the lack of a king of clubs on the card table provides Poirot with only clue he needs to solve the crime. Written by
A ruthless studio boss is found dead with a hole in his head. The person who found him? A famous actress, engaged to royalty, who takes refuge in the house next door. Fearing unfavorable publicity which would mean no marriage, the Prince asks for Poirot's help in solving the case.
Good episode in that we see them making a '30s film, though it looks like a bad one. The first leading man, who is also a subject, was a John Gilbert type, a mustached alcoholic who was big in silents.
Poirot wonders why the actress ran to the house she did, when another one was more convenient, and a couple of other things missed by Inspector Japp just don't add up.
Sumptuous production as usual. The denouement is a little different. Let's just say the King of Clubs is involved.
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