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Five Red Herrings 

Solve the mystery with Lord Peter Whimsey, based on the book by Dorothy L Sayers.

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1977   1976  


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Series cast summary:
Ian Carmichael ...  Lord Peter Wimsey 4 episodes, 1975
Glyn Houston ...  Bunter 4 episodes, 1975
Roy Boutcher Roy Boutcher ...  Henry Strachan 4 episodes, 1975
David Rintoul ...  Jock Graham 4 episodes, 1975
Michael Elder Michael Elder ...  Sergeant Dalziel 4 episodes, 1975
Russell Hunter ...  Matthew Gowan 3 episodes, 1975
John Junkin ...  Mr. Alcock 3 episodes, 1975
Robert James ...  Sir Maxwell Jamieson 3 episodes, 1975
Clive Graham Clive Graham ...  Michael Waters 3 episodes, 1975
Michael Sheard ...  Inspector MacPherson 3 episodes, 1975
David McKail David McKail ...  John Ferguson 3 episodes, 1975
Susan Macready Susan Macready ...  Gilda Farren 3 episodes, 1975
Jake D'Arcy Jake D'Arcy ...  Hammond 3 episodes, 1975
Julie Peasgood ...  Fenella Strachan 3 episodes, 1975
Donald Douglas ...  Hugh Farren 2 episodes, 1975
James Copeland James Copeland ...  Wully Murdoch 2 episodes, 1975
Ann Scott-Jones Ann Scott-Jones ...  Mrs. Alcock 2 episodes, 1975
Jan Wilson Jan Wilson ...  Miss Selby 2 episodes, 1975
Sally Kinghorn Sally Kinghorn ...  Betty 2 episodes, 1975
Eileen McCallum Eileen McCallum ...  Miss Cochrane 2 episodes, 1975
Irene Sunters Irene Sunters ...  Mrs. Smith-Lemesurier 2 episodes, 1975
Elizabeth Sinclair Elizabeth Sinclair ...  Jeanie 2 episodes, 1975
Elaine Collins Elaine Collins ...  Helen McGregor 2 episodes, 1975


Solve the mystery with Lord Peter Whimsey, based on the book by Dorothy L Sayers.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Mystery







Release Date:

19 December 1976 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Lord Peter Wimsey: Five Red Herrings See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


None of the stations shown are the real locations as the railway line closed in 1965. See more »


Follows The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club (1972) See more »

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User Reviews

It's a clever "fairplay" puzzle mystery set in southern Scotland
16 January 2005 | by fisherforrestSee all my reviews

If you like to pit your own wits against "Lord Peter" this is your chance. Dorothy L. Sayers shows you everything "his lordship" knows, so you ought to pick out the culprit as soon as he does, maybe even sooner. Along the way you'll get some delightful looks at the Scottish landscape, hear a lot of broad Scots dialect, and meet some really interesting, not to say often delightful characters, well interpreted by a sterling cast.

That said, I would have to agree with the critics over the years, who have rated this mystery of Dorothy's as not quite up to her usual standard. It's, in the novel at least, just a trifle too complicated, possibly boring at times, with all the emphasis on railway timetables and such. The BBC has foreshortened much of this. You won't be bored, I am sure, with this TV film version. Briefly, the story involves the death of a curmudgeonly Scottish artist named "Campbell" and six suspects known to have possible reasons to kill him. Only one can be guilty, hence there are five who are "red herrings". In the U.S. at one time, this novel was published as SUSPICIOUS CHARACTERS.

In the course of solving the mystery for the Scottish constabulary, "Lord Peter", and "Bunter" travel over a good bit of the landscape southeast of Glasgow in "his lordship's" Bentley (Yes, I know Dorothy said he drove a Daimler. I wonder why the BBC changed it. Better to advertise the home product perhaps?), and sometimes via bicycle and "shank's mare".

By the time "Lord Peter" exposes the culprit you will have ample opportunity to judge how well Ian Carmichael has realised "Lord Peter" for you. Physically, about 15 years later, Edward Petherbridge has physically presented what I think is a more authentic "Lord Peter". He gives us, though, a much more dour and brooding character than what I imagine Dorothy intended. Iam Carmichael, although he doesn't look like my conception of "Lord Peter", does seem to show the insouciance and "whimsical" charm that the character displays throughout the novels.

There are many lovely little cameos sprinkled through this film. The women especially shine. Irene Sunters simpers wonderfully as "Mrs. Smith-Lemesurier", the clinging vine who is painter "Jock Graham's" nemesis. And Julie Peasgood as "Penella Strachan", 15 years old going on "30", will surely knock you over. I don't think there is a bad performance in the lot.

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