Poirot (1989–2013)
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The Mysterious Affair at Styles 

Hastings renews his friendship with Poirot and involves him in the mysterious poisoning of the mistress of a manor house married to a man twenty years her junior.


Ross Devenish


Agatha Christie (by), Clive Exton (dramatized by)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
David Suchet ... Hercule Poirot
Hugh Fraser ... Lieutenant Hastings
Philip Jackson ... Chief Inspector Japp
Beatie Edney ... Mary Cavendish
David Rintoul ... John Cavendish
Gillian Barge ... Mrs. Inglethorp
Michael Cronin Michael Cronin ... Alfred Inglethorp
Joanna McCallum Joanna McCallum ... Evie Howard
Anthony Calf ... Lawrence Cavendish
Allie Byrne Allie Byrne ... Cynthia Murdoch
Lala Lloyd Lala Lloyd ... Dorcas
Michael Godley Michael Godley ... Dr. Wilkins
Morris Perry ... Mr. Wells
Penelope Beaumont Penelope Beaumont ... Mrs. Raikes
David Savile David Savile ... Summerhaye


Recovering from the horrors of World War I, British Army officer Arthur Hastings hopes to find peace and quiet at a country manor in the English countryside. But when the matriarch dies during the night from strychnine poisoning, Hastings enlists the help of an old friend staying nearby with other war refugees to help solve the murder: former Belgian police detective Hercule Poirot. Written by Mark Limvere-Robinson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Release Date:

16 September 1990 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (14 episodes)


Black and White (archive footage)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Philip Jackson reprised his role of Japp in a BBC Radio 4 production, with John Moffat as Poirot See more »


When Poirot proves Alfred Inglethorpe has an alibi for buying the poison, Hastings says the investigation is "back at square one". This phrase comes from radio commentaries of football matches in the 1930's. The pitch was divided into hypothetical squares so listeners could follow the action. A team which failed to attack and was forced to defend would be "back in Square One". The phrase was unknown in 1917. See more »


Mrs. Emily Inglethorp: I've told you before.
John Cavendish: It's none of your business.
Mrs. Emily Inglethorp: It is my business. Not content with carrying on this sordid affair with this woman, I now find you squandering large sums of money on her.
John Cavendish: It's not a large sum of money. It's a loan, anyway.
Mrs. Emily Inglethorp: No! No! My mind is made up and you need not think that any fear of scandal between husband and wife will deter me.
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Referenced in Murder on the Orient Express (2001) See more »

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User Reviews

First and last case
17 January 2007 | by dbdumonteilSee all my reviews

Styles manor was certainly a place dear to the writer,for her first "Poirot" and her last one ("Curtain-Poirot's last case) in which the sleuth dies both take place there.

That said "Styles" is not one of Poirot's best cases,and Christie wrote at least twenty books which are superior to it.

Interest lies somewhere else.This is the novel which tells us why Belgian Poirot wound up in fair England -which he somewhat despised- and it does not forget the historical background ,with a fine depiction of the WW1 years.

If my memory serves me well,Christie wrote the book cause she wanted to take up her sister's challenge: a story where you could never guess whodunit..

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