Jonathan Creek (1997–2016)
6 user

The Grinning Man 

Stage magician Lance Gessler lives in a mansion known as Metropolis that has a deadly history. When another victim succumbs to an ominous presence in the attic room, it's up to Jonathan to unravel the mystery.


David Renwick


David Renwick (by)

On Disc

at Amazon




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Andrew Havill ... Narrator (voice)
Jon Campling ... Jacques Futrelle
Patrick Poletti Patrick Poletti ... Eli Mencken
Eloise Rakic-Platt Eloise Rakic-Platt ... Child Constance
Sarah Champion Sarah Champion ... Marcia
Sheridan Smith ... Joey Ross
Alan Davies ... Jonathan Creek
Stuart Milligan ... Adam Klaus
Sally Plumb Sally Plumb ... Housewife
Adam James ... Alec
Naomi Bentley ... Mina
Ciarán McMenamin ... Glen
Nicholas Boulton ... Lance Gessler
Jenna Harrison ... Elodie
Judy Parfitt ... Constance Gessler


Stage magician Lance Gessler lives in a mansion known as Metropolis that has a deadly history. When another victim succumbs to an ominous presence in the attic room, it's up to Jonathan to unravel the mystery.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery



Parents Guide:

View content advisory »




Release Date:

1 January 2009 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Jacques Futrell was also the name of an American journalist and mystery writer. He is best known for writing short detective stories featuring Professor Augustus S. F. X. Van Dusen, also known as "The Thinking Machine" for his application of logic to any and all situations, especially to the "locked room mysteries" beloved of Jonathan Creek. See more »


The portrait of the 'Grinning Man' smoking a pipe is supposedly by Hieronymus Bosch who died in 1516 long before tobacco had been introduced to Europe. See more »


[Adam is lusting after a pornography actress with unbelievably large breasts]
Adam Klaus: Ohhhhhh. What I wouldn't give, Jonathan, for a piece of that action. The eighth and nine wonders of the world. If you're looking for a 360-degree experience, you could lose your whole face in there and never see it again. Forget about bras - you wouldn't get those in a *hammock*!
Jonathan Creek: Have you finished?
Adam Klaus: Sorry?
Jonathan Creek: Are you done? Because I've really got better things to do than stand around here watching your tongue hanging out ...
See more »


References Max Headroom (1987) See more »

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User Reviews

Best of the Lot
25 August 2018 | by dswaugh-39964See all my reviews

Thoroughly enjoyed Creek during its run, but this is hands-down my favorite episode of the lot. The opening newsreel footage sequence was a stroke of genius, beautifully done, and the episode's ending was one of the most clever, shocking, and thoroughly satisfying conclusions to a mystery that I've ever seen rendered on TV. My only knock against this otherwise perfect episode was its extraneous and inexplicable side-plot involving Adam Klaus's venture into 3-D porn. I'm no prude, but I was left shaking my head and wondering why Renwick saw fit to include it. Not only wasn't it funny, but it added considerable length to the overall narrative and nothing to the main plot. Without it, Renwick could have trimmed the episode down to a manageable 90 to 100 minutes. But with it, the episode weighed in at over two hours. Still, the main plot of THE GRINNING MAN was sufficiently compelling to keep me invested throughout, and again, that ending. Wow. My wife and I sat there with our mouths hanging open like mailbox doors while the credits rolled, and I walked away from this episode thinking that no made-for-TV mystery had left me this satisfied in a very long time. So, hats off to Renwick for taking the time. It was worth the writer's dark night of the soul that he apparently experienced to have made THE GRINNING MAN happen. I, for one, am grateful.

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