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Ordeal by Innocence 

Old wounds are reopened for the Argyle family when a man suddenly turns up after being abroad and claims that the black sheep of the family could not have murdered its tyrannical matriarch.



(novel), (screenplay)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Dr Arthur Calgary (as Julian Rhind Tutt)
Tina Argyle (as Gugu Mbatha Raw)


Miss Marple is invited to the wedding of a friend, but the gaieties are interrupted when a stranger arrives; he provides the missing evidence which proves that the black sheep of the family, Jacko, was wrongfully hanged for murder. This raises the question of who in the household did kill the cold-hearted mistress of the house two years previously. As usual, Miss Marple is needed to uncover the hatred, jealousy, lust etc. behind the family's facade and sort out the threads of the mystery. Written by Lone Andersen

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Crime | Drama | Mystery


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Release Date:

19 August 2007 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?


When Cambridge scientist Dr. Arthur Calgary says he has recently returned from the Arctic, Mickey Argyle asks whether he was on the presumably fictional Hayes Birley Expedition. This may have been named for Isaac Israel Hayes who led northern expeditions the 1850s and 1860s, and Cambridge researcher Brian Birley Roberts who did the same in the 1930s. See more »


A modern-day motorhome can be seen in the background over Gwenda's shoulder as the camera pans round when she meets Miss Marple at her arrival. See more »


Version of Ordeal by Innocence (1984) See more »

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User Reviews

A slightly better ITV 'Marple'
20 October 2007 | by (England) – See all my reviews

By the amazingly low standards of the ITV 'Marple' series, this one is not bad. On the message board, the contributor 'Last picture show' points out, quite correctly, that the plot does not in fact make sense. However, I failed to notice this when watching and found the ending satisfying at the time.

Despite disfiguring the original book for insufficient reasons, this version did hold my interest. One factor was Juliet Stevenson and Denis Lawson's performances. The tragedy of Gwenda's life comes over very well. Another plus point is Julian Rhind-Tutt as Dr Calgary. He makes the part amusing without descending to silliness. In fact, everyone in the production seems to take it fairly seriously. This is a relief after the facetiousness of other episodes in this series.

As ever, there are anachronisms. We appear, as usual, to be in the early 1950s and the series designer takes great pains over this. However, it is all thrown away when the script includes phrases such as 'leg-over merchant', 'move on' (in the sense of getting over a tragedy) and - most glaringly of all - 'scam' (this last one from the mouth of Miss Marple). 'Scam' is first recorded in America in the 1960s. I doubt that it reached England before the 70s, and even then, elderly ladies like Miss Marple would hardly be likely to use it. (On the other hand, we also never thought that Miss Marple was a safe-breaker until this film!) There are more anachronisms with some of the hair and costumes.

Despite the defects, this one is worth watching.

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