Miss Marple is visiting an old school friend, Lady Camilla Tressilian, along with an eclectic group: Neville Strange and his wife Kay, his former wife Audrey and her childhood friend and cousin Thomas Royde, Ted Latimer (who is something of a gigolo and very attracted to Kay Strange) and finally Freddie Treves, a retired solicitor. When Treves is found dead the day after a dinner party at Lady Tressilian's home and Lady Tressilian herself is found bludgeoned to death a short time later, Miss Marple must sort through the complex set of relationships among all the players, and determine what role the tale of a child's crime may have had to play in the deaths.Written by
I guess I should consider myself singularly fortunate to be right at the Canadian border because we get a lot of Canadian and British shows that would not normally be seen in the USA. I did not even know that the BBC was running a whole new series of mysteries based on Agatha Christie's beloved Ms. Jane Marple, spinster sleuth extraordinary.
Geraldine McEwan as the latest and very good incarnation of Jane Marple gets invited for a weekend to the home of Eileen Atkins an old school chum. They've got quite a gathering of people at the Atkins homestead that weekend, including her ward Greg Wise and both his current wife and ex-wife. Now you know that's got to be a recipe for trouble.
But later on retired solicitor Tom Baker dies of a heart attack and shortly afterwards Atkins herself is bludgeoned to death. That does bring the police in. But of course the redoubtable Jane is way ahead of them.
McEwan's Marple is more Angela Lansbury and Helen Hayes matronly than Margaret Rutherford's old blunderbuss was. I remember recently seeing one of the Rutberford films and good old Margaret withheld clues deliberately from Scotland Yard. She wanted the fun of solving the case. But in this one, McEwan just shrewdly deduces from the behavior all around her and comes up with the answers.
It was nice to see Tom Baker whom I so well remember as the Doctor number four of the Doctors Who. I see this has also been the his last appearance to date in front of the camera.
Christie purists say that the plot was altered. Whether it was or not I can't speak to that, but Towards Zero is an intelligent drama and those who don't like pure Agatha can take to this one.
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