Lord Peter Wimsey investigates after the novelist Harriet Vane is accused of poisoning her former lover.




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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Shirley Cain ...
Miss Climpson
Miss Booth
Mrs. Wrayburn
Miss Murchison
David Quilter ...
Christopher Scoular ...
Ronald Leigh-Hunt ...
Sir Impey Biggs
Derek Ensor ...
Bernard Martin ...
1st Court Reporter
Roger Davidson ...
2nd Court Reporter


Not only has Lord Peter recruited Miss Murchison to help gather evidence on the guilt of Boyes' cousin and solicitor Urquhart, he's able to get a copy of the actual will by having Miss Climpson insinuate herself into Mrs. Wrayburn's household and ingratiating herself with the senile woman's caregiver by feigning a belief in spiritualism and staging a phony séance. Even with this new evidence, it's still an open question as to how Boyes was given the fatal dose of arsenic. Written by duke1029@aol.com

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Crime | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

8 April 1987 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?


The chemical test that Bunter carries out on the sample of white powder is called the Marsh Test, developed in 1836 by chemist James Marsh. The sample suspected of containing arsenic is mixed in a flat-bottomed flask with hydrochloric or sulfuric acid and some zinc metal, with any gas given off being drawn through a glass tube which is then heated by a flame. If the sample contains arsenic, it is converted to arsenic trihydride gas (AsH3) which is broken down by the heat of the flame to metallic arsenic and hydrogen. A flame is also applied to the end of the glass tube to burn off any hydrogen produced and remove the risk of explosion. If the sample does contain arsenic, then it appears as a metallic stain on the inside of the glass tube. In this case, Bunter also holds a white porcelain bowl to the end of the tube and the metallic stain develops on its rim, proving that the sample does indeed contain arsenic. See more »


Lord Peter Wimsey: [Last lines - a dialogue flashback after Harriet walks away silently] At least I can you laugh.
Harriet Vane: ...and surely that's better than tears.
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User Reviews

Made in 1987?
28 December 2015 | by See all my reviews

A rhetorical question, of course, but "Strong Poison" does look like it was made in the 1970s - its production values and filmmaking techniques are not that different from those of the mid-1970s Lord Peter Wimsey films that Ian Carmichael made; the advancements introduced to the British TV mystery genre only two years later by the "Poirot" series are quite impressive. "Strong Poison" is rather plodding and sometimes dull, and the plot never really thickens; this must be one of the easiest whodunits I've seen (though the "how" is a bit trickier) - there are only TWO suspects, and of course we know Harriet Vane didn't do it! Edward Petherbridge and Harriet Walter are fine in their roles, and their vis-a-vis encounters when Wimsey comes to visit Harriet in prison do feature some strong, intelligent dialogue. ** out of 4.

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