Top positive review
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Complete set completely good
on December 20, 2013
Agatha Christie has done more for British Mystery than any other writer. It's not Poirot, but some of the Poirot characters first appeared in these stories. Mysteries take place in the 1920-30s period, and provide a look at a bit more of Christie than perhaps Poirot displays. There is more to Agatha Christie than just mystery.
The true question for this series is not Will Christie's stories be good?; but Will the acting be up to script level? Are the actor's worthy? They are. The series is cast with several British members of high achievement and fame. 10 episodes give interesting mix from romance to crime. They come alive, enchanting at times, suspenseful at other times.
SUBTITLES for all episodes, and it's a great set.
Complete episode details:
"Case of the Middle-Aged Wife": London's Parker Pyne (Maurice Denham), 'Dr. of Happiness' is engaged by a cheated-upon wife. Does it help, Mr. Pyne, to reverse the cheating participants? What's good for the George is good for the Maria. Claude is played by Rupert Frazer(The House of Eliott)
"In a Glass Darkly": A murder 'vision' is seen by a party guest causing him to suggest to the fiancé that she not go through with her wedding. After serving in WWI, he returns & the prophecy takes on new meaning.
"Girl in the Train": International intrigue involving a broker, a blonde, and an encounter on the train to Portsmouth--England not Massachusetts. Mystery, comedy, romance, and adventure; Agatha Christie style.
"Fourth Man": Riding the train together from London to Scotland was a doctor, a lawyer, and a clergyman. Sounds like a joke--but not when the 4th man joins the train compartment. John Nettles (Midsomer Murders), very young, is the 4th man. Fiona Mathieson also gives a great performance.
"Case of the Discontented Soldier": Parker Pyne gets another client in this series. An ex-soldier misses the excitement and danger of the military. His life in an English village is a bit droll--but oh so beautiful. Great place to visit. Wm. Gaunt plays the Major.
"Magnolia Blossom": Marriage trapped Theo (Claraia Madden-Sense and Sensibility)is the lady caught in the middle of 2 men who desire her in this 1920's love triangle. Husband Jeremy (Richard Darrell) vs lover Vincent (Ralph Bates-Poldark). Should Theo choose freedom or loyalty? Romance or duty?
"The Mystery of the Blue Jar": Great! Law student, Jack (Robin Kermode-Wilde) hears a woman yell 'murder,help murder' on the fairway. Great golf scenes with vintage togs, clubs. Then lovely French Felise (Isabelle Spade-Rue des Plaisirs & other hot Fr. films) hears and dreams of the blue vase. She, Jack, and "Doctor of the Soul" (Michael Aldridge-Love for Lydia), psychic, set about finding the answer to the mysterious voice. Fun Christie Mystery style end.
"The Red Signal": Another psychological mystery & murder. Uncle/doctor (Alan Badel-The Woman in White; this performance aired after his real death) is shot after a seance foretelling death-'red signal.' Nephew & heir, Dermot (Richard Morant-Dorothy L. Sayers Mystery;Day Night Day Night) and lover Claire (Joanna David-Lillie;Pride and Prejudice;Bleak House)look guilty...but how? who? Jack Trent, Claire's spouse, Jack's friend, is played by Christopher Cazenove (Dutchess of Duke Street) and the psychic is Rosalie Crutchley.
"Jane in Search of a Job": Jane (Elizabeth Garvie-Pride and Prejudice) look-alike to Grand Duchess of Ostravia (Amanda Redman-Little Dorrit) impersonates at risk to her life for $$. Cop Nigel (Andrew Bicknell-New Adventures of Robin Hood) fears danger. Ambush? Kidnap? Death? Conspiracy? Princess Anna (Stephanie Cole-Doc Martin).
"The Manhood of Edward Robinson": Fiancee to Maud (Ann Thornton-Hope and Glory), a geek and meek Edward (Nicholas Farrell-Chariots of Fire) buys sleek car and heads on a Christmas adventure, starting with gorgeous diamond burglar Noreen (Cherie Lunghi-Secret Diary of a Call Girl). A life-changing encounter & romance. Maud's mom is Margery Mason (Love Actually). Also Rupert Everett (My Best Friend's Wedding.)
As you see, exceptional casts, the world's best books adapted well, beautiful period settings, and mystery mixed with crime and romance.