Hello and welcome to ‘Putting the D in the P’, my weekly look at the latest episode of Death in Paradise. Death in Paradise is one of my favourite shows on television, and when casting your eyes down to the article below, just remember that my light-hearted ribbing is coming from a place of love.
Putting The D In The P is about taking an indepth look at the story of an episode of one of the most popular crime shows on television to try and delve into why it is so popular. Also it’s fun.
There’s probably something to be said that Death in Paradise is always aired in January and Feburary, the heart of the British winter. It’s not incredibly warm outside…in fact you might say it’s fucking freezing, and we’ve already been plagued with flooding and snow. Therefore, it’s just nice to turn the television on and see a show with a bright colour pallet for a change. Maybe there’s some kind of holiday porn about it.
Look at Kris Marshall…he’s having a grand old time…he’s not freezing his tits off in High Wycombe. He’s not drowning in Cumbria. He’s on a beach. And there’s sun. It’s almost as if Death in Paradise lives in a universe of it’s own. Saint-Marie exists out of time. In a place where Winter doesn’t exist. In a place where Brexit and Trump don’t exist.
Basically Saint-Marie is the island from Lost. But with less polar bears and more murders.
And maybe that’s the appeal. When you tune into Death in Paradise, you know exactly what you’re gonna get. Sun. Sea. And a murder which will be sufficiently wrapped up in 57 minutes. It’s not going to blow your mind. It’s not there to change your perception of murder mysteries. It’s just incredibly safe.
And there’s nothing wrong with that.
Anyway, this week we got a pretty good one. So let’s start Putting The D in the P, for Episode 3. (Again, no title for the episode, so I make my own.)
Series 6 Episode 3: The Detective in Love
For a nice change of pace, this episode doesn’t start with some randomers – one of whom gets offed. No, we start off with Humph himself travelling to an island getaway with his island girlfriend Martha. They both seem pretty excited about it, and why wouldn’t they be? Sun, sea, and romance on an island paradise. You know, different to their usual sun, sea and romance on Saint-Marie. Oh well, at least Humph won’t have to deal with any murders while he’s there.
Oh. Oh dear. Oh deary me. At their inaugural dinner, promising to be followed by a night of unbridled steamy Humph-ing, Humph and Martha see some commotion on the staircase going up to the rooms. Humph has clear line of sight of the staircase, and a man he had seen earlier in the day is staggering around looking drunk. Humph disregards it as the man disappears upstairs.
Not a minute later, Humph hears a scream. He runs upstairs to find the man collapsed. And get this?? The man is dead as disco – with a knife wound to the gut.
Looks like all the Humph-ing’ll have to wait. ROLL TITLES!
Humph acts quickly. He sees the man’s been super stabbed. Two people are in the room with him, finding the body. Ernestine Grey, the resident chef, and Elliott Taylor, one of the owners of the hotel and the deceased’s brother
and they’re almost definitely fucking each other. Elliott doesn’t seem that bothered by his brother Charlie’s death, but I think that speaks more to the actor’s range than the actual story.
Humph sees the room’s a mess, and the window has been broken. A robbery, perhaps? Charlie’s watch and wallet have been taken. There was no other access to the room other than the staircase which Humph had line of sight on all the time between Charlie going upstairs and Charlie getting murdered. I guess, for Charlie, that staircase was a real……….STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN
(sometimes I stand directly under a shower for hours just to convince myself I’m not crying)
At the jetty, Humph can’t see any boats. The killer is still on the island, I guess. He sends everyone to bed while he and Martha inspect the ground outside Charlie’s window. It isn’t trampled on at all, and all the flowers are undisturbed. The room was staged like a robbery gone wrong. But the case of the staircase means it was impossible for anyone in the hotel to have killed Charlie, unless it was Ernestine, who found the body. Humph knows all that because he is the witness at the foot of the stairs.
Humph inspects the crime scene again. He finds the sandwich he saw Charlie carrying to his room, spots of blood next to a wall, and a really fucking stinky pack of cigarettes. These cigarettes are like super out of date, meaning they’re probably like a massive clue.
The next morn, Humph tries to sneak out of his bedroom without waking Martha up, but he trips on a bag and wakes her up anyway. It is both as funny and as unfunny as this description suggests. Anyways, Martha’s gonna head back to the mainland, as there’s truly no hope of any sexual activity anymore. A dead man is not an aphrodisiac – at least not for most people.
Subtract a Martha, and all the wordless extras who were dismissed from the case because PLOT, add a Florence, Dwayne and JP, and we’re really starting to get somewhere. There’s like three minutes of Humph just recapping stuff, which might be welcome if we weren’t only 11 minutes into the fucking show and even the least of all people tend to have memories that can hold 12 minutes of ridiculous telly at a time.
When we’re all caught up, Humph and Florence go to interview people while Dwayne and JP go to search the hotel. Humph remembers he saw Charlie carrying a red folder before the dinner in the evening so he tells them to be on the lookout for that.
Everyone was alone in the 10 minutes between Charlie going upstairs and Charlie being brutally murdered. There’s Elliott Taylor and his wife Linda Taylor, the cook Ernestine Grey, Samuel Palmer the barman, and receptionist Irie Johnson. No one has an alibi and somehow got up to Charlie’s room without going up the stairs. Charlie owned a share in the hotel, but had been gone 20 years. He used to run it, but got bored and left. He hardly ever came back, and they don’t know why he came back this time. The other two dudes had never met Charlie before.
Ernestine is interviewed and is quickly dismissed. She seems to have an affection for the Taylors, and she’s worked in their employ for years (the brothers Charlie and Elliott own the hotel). She’s also the most likely suspect, which means, in Death in Paradise terms, is that there’s no flippin’ way she did it.
In the kitchen, JP and Dwayne have a SUB-PLOT while searching for the murder weapon. JP seems a little off his game. It turns out him and the missus are having a tiff. Yeah, JP got married last series, remember? No? Don’t worry, it’s not that important. Anyway, Dwayne gives him some advice which seems a little curt. JP should just get her some flowers and apologise. JP says he doesn’t want to be that kind of couple. Oh, they also find the murder weapon in the dishwasher I guess.
Back in the MAIN PLOT, Ernestine said that Charlie and Irie had had a bit of a tiff as well, so Humph goes to ask Irie about it. He’s only been duplicating guest’s credit cards and stealing money from them. Actually not a bad crime for a receptionist. Poor old Humph might’ve got duplicated too, if it wasn’t for those meddlin’…him. Anyways, Charlie found out. Pretty good reason to kill the SOB I think. Still we’re not even halfway through the episode, so it probably wasn’t this guy. He’s not a murderer, he’s just a cock.
Charlie Taylor seemed to be a nice guy, and as Dwayne
hacks looks into his laptop, he finds correspondence from a local solicitor. Seems like the solicitor wanted Charlie to return to Saint-Marie to convince his brother to…something. Also Charlie Taylor had a flight back booked for the morning after he was killed.
The team call it a day, Humph goes to eat lobster with Martha and JP goes back home to face the music. Dwayne tries to convince him to apologise again but Florence is on JP’s side. Well, looks like Dwayne was right for once, because the next morning he finds JP sleeping at the station. It’s a nice subversion of the standard Dwayne-gives-bad-advice plotline that’s been used too many times. Brownie points here.
Also, JP in his altogethers makes me feel things I’ve never felt before.
Humph and Florence get back to the island, and it’s time to tread some serious water. There’s always one of these an episode. A lead that goes absolutely fucking nowhere. Well, turns out we get two in this episode. Florence finds an old picture of Charlie Taylor with Samuel Palmer. But Samuel Palmer said he’d never met Charlie before?? SAY WHA–?
Samuel Palmer the shitbag liar reveals that he pretended not to know Charlie because as youths they both set fire to a community centre, but Samuel took the wrap for both of them, going to prison for five years. So that’s right, ladies and gentlemen, it’s time for:
THE DEATH IN PARADISE ‘CRIMES THAT ARE TOTALLY DISREGARDED FOR SAKE OF PLOT’ LIST brought to you by SILENT WITNESS, the ‘pathologists going way out of line’ show.
- Identity Theft (E1)
- Illegal Substance Abuse (E1)
- Sexual Harrassment (E2)
- Credit Card Fraud (E3)
- Arson (E3)
- Perverting the Course of Justice (E3)
And that was THE DEATH IN PARADISE ‘CTATDFSOP’ LIST.
Anyways, it’s not relevant and it’s completely swept aside.
Dwayne finds out from the solicitor that the hotel is haemorrhaging money out the arse. The file in the folder Humph saw Charlie carrying was the paperwork to liquidate the hotel. The folder is found to be empty but JP finds the papers, signed, shoved to the bottom of the bin in Elliot’s office.
Seems Elliot and Linda didn’t want to let go of the hotel. But they say they didn’t kill him. Elliot merely snuck into the room after Charlie was murdered and stole back the signed papers. It doesn’t seem very likely, but we get a flashback of it so I guess it must be true. He’s not a murderer, he’s just a massive cock. Seems like that sentiments going around.
So we don’t seem to be any closer to actually finding out who murdered Charlie. It’s time for some of that good ol’ Humphrey brainpower. As he starts recapping (
FUCKING AGAIN) the case, Dwayne has a splinter in his hand. And of course, this leads to him having his big revelation! He knows who killed Chazza, and he knows how. But this time he doesn’t want to get everyone together for a big reveal. He wants to do it one-on-one this time (you know, like an actual fucking policeman would do). Humph and Florence wait in the killer’s room and in comes…HOLY TIT ‘N’ BOLLOCKS!! it was Linda Taylor!!!!
Humph explains how Dwayne’s splinter got him to the answer. An injury sustained in one place can be carried to another. Therefore, Charlie was stabbed in the kitchen and then walked up to his room. (It’s a bit of a flimsy thing, but we’ll go with it I guess) So Linda stabbed him, but why? And why would Charlie try to cover up the injury as he went up the stairs and then stage his own crime scene to look like a robbery?
Easy. Love. Charlie and Linda were in love. The reason Charlie left all those years ago was because he couldn’t bear to his brother together with the one he loved. Linda stabbed him by mistake during an argument, where she wished to leave the island with him. Charlie wouldn’t allow it. And somehow he got stabbed. He took a sandwich, made his way up the stairs and fucked up the crime scene.
The last detail? That out of date pack of cigarettes. See, Charlie needed a place to stash his wallet and his watch, and the bloody rag he had used to try and stop the bleeding. He hid them in a childhood nook in his room, where the pack of cigarettes used to be. Boom! Case Closed!!
Take he…Oh, yeah, let her tell her husband or something. I don’t give a shit. Take her away!
Back on Saint-Marie, JP decides to finally take Dwayne’s advice and say sorry to his wife. Humph and Florence reflect that the case was really all about love. Pulling in to Humph’s driveway, Humph tells Florence that he’s fallen in love with Martha. But Martha’s leaving soon. And he has no idea what to do next.
I guess Humphrey Goodman really did turn out to be the
THE DETECTIVE IN LOVE.
Overall, this episode was okay. Early on, it seemed like it might be a story with just Humphrey from the core team. That would have been a hell of a lot cooler than what we got, but it might’ve been hard to justify. The theme of love tying the main plot and the sub-plots together was a nice touch and the idea of the dead man trying to cover up his own murder was interesting, even if it could have been executed better.
Up Next: Humphrey investigates a murder…because that’s his job. The others are there too…because that’s their jobs.
See you next week!