Poirot (1989–2013)
16 user

The ABC Murders 

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | Episode aired 5 January 1992
Poirot receives taunting letters from a serial killer who appears to choose his victims and crime scenes alphabetically.


Andrew Grieve


Clive Exton (dramatized by)

On Disc

at Amazon




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
David Suchet ... Hercule Poirot
Hugh Fraser ... Captain Hastings
Philip Jackson ... Chief Inspector Japp
Donald Sumpter ... Cust
Donald Douglas ... Franklin Clarke
Nicholas Farrell ... Donald Fraser
Pippa Guard ... Megan Barnard
Cathryn Bradshaw ... Mary Drower
Nina Marc ... Thora Grey
David McAlister ... Inspector Glen
Vivienne Burgess Vivienne Burgess ... Lady Clarke
Ann Windsor Ann Windsor ... Miss Merrion
Michael Mellinger ... Franz Ascher
Miranda Forbes Miranda Forbes ... Mrs. Turton
Peter Penry-Jones Peter Penry-Jones ... Superintendent Carter


Hastings returns to Britain after a long absence to find Poirot anxious for a new case which will challenge his gray cells. Poirot quickly gets his wish in the form of taunting letters from a serial killer who has dubbed himself ABC and who leaves an ABC railroad schedule at the scene of each crime. The victims as well as the crime scenes appear to be chosen randomly, but maintain an obsessive adherence to alphabetical order. However, Poirot grows to believe that the killer is not the madman the authorities believe, but a methodical murderer with a very tangible motive. Written by G. Taverney (duke1029@aol.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Release Date:

5 January 1992 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (14 episodes)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The action music from the contemporary film showing at the cinema in Doncaster is also featured in Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975), for the scene where Sir Robin encounters the three-headed knight. The piece is 'Desperate Moment' by Kenneth Essex. See more »


When the landlady walks in on Cust washing his hands he states that he was washing with cold water and she leaves. However, when questioned by Poirot, she states that Cust said he had cut his hand, which he did not say. See more »


[first lines]
Announcer: Train now boarding.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Title in most Spanish speaking countries is "El misterio de la guía de ferrocarriles" See more »


Features Number 17 (1932) See more »

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User Reviews

One of the great mystery films of all time
19 March 2018 | by SimonJackSee all my reviews

This TV film of "The ABC Murders" is one of the best movies of the entire Agatha Christie series on Hercule Poirot. It also ranks among the very best mystery thrillers of all time. The film is packed with intrigue from start to finish. The simple modus operandi of the murders in this story belie the complexities of this fantastic mystery.

Super sleuth Poirot is stumped for a long time, but his little grey cells help him eventually unravel this great mystery. His sidekick, Captain Hastings, is on hand to lend a hand. And Chief Inspector Japp has more than the usual work cut out for him in the effort to apprehend the murderer.

The cast for this film give it their all, and some guest actors turn in tremendous performances as well. Donald Sumpter as Cast gives a performance worthy of an award. This is too great a mystery to say much more about. It would deprive those who haven't yet seen the film from the full enjoyment of a superb mystery.

Kudos to Grenada Media and associates. This is an outstanding production of an enthralling thriller from the pen of the greatest mystery writer of all time.

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