Putting the D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 8)

Putting the D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 8)

Hello and welcome to ‘Putting the D in the P’, my weekly look at the latest episode of Death in ParadiseDeath 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.

So let’s get one thing out of the way – I know this recap is super late, but it’s the last one so I thought I would do something special. So I had to raise all the money for all these backing dancers, the snow machine, the smoke machine, the strobe lighting and the George Clooney impersonator. I got so out of control I forgot that there was absolutely no audio/visual component to these recaps. So I guess I’ll just sit here with all these guys doing their thing, and try and write this thing. It’s very loud here. Actually the smoke makes it hard for me to even see the screen. I feel a bit light-headed actually. Where’s my heart medicine? 

Anyway, this is indeed the last episode of Season 6 of Death in Paradise and what a season it’s been. There’s been some really good episodes, a few duds, and a big upheaval as Humph thought with his penis and left the island for some hardcore Humph-ing with Martha, leaving us with Ardol O’Hanlon’s DI Jack Mooney. Mooney is a fundamentally different kind of character to Humph. He has his own awkward style of investigating which can sometimes be mistaken for a general awkwardness. He has a daughter and he has some fresh trauma, having lost his wife just a month ago.

We haven’t really seen enough of Mooney to judge him with any kind of fairness. I think O’Hanlon plays him almost too well at some points (accentuating the weirdness), leaving the audience to wonder whether he or Mooney are playing up. I like him though, and as we’ve discovered through this series, it’s only my opinion that actually matters. The magic talking deer told me that when I smoked that PCP. the seeds of repetition were broken with Mooney…finally. And this series can now evolve into something else.

So for the last time lets start Putting the D in the P! (The episode title of wikipedia for this one is ‘Murder in the Polls’. I mean it’s not wrong but it lacks a certain creativity. So I’ve got my own.)

Series 6 Episode 8 – The Red Rosette

Ah voting time is here again, and what a wonderful time it is. I mean, no wrong conclusion has ever been reached by the outcome of a public vote. Not one. And that’s a goddamn fact! Dwayne knows what I’m talking about. He’s even going to stand outside the community centre voting station all day to make sure no hoodlums come to mess up the sanctity of crudely marking a box with an x while resisting the urge to draw a penis.

Edwina (a woman with a severe case of resting-bitch-face) is waiting outside the community centre too. She’s even arrived before the vicar and his wife and she doesn’t seem too happy about it. Mind, she could probably shit gold and she still wouldn’t crack a smile. Anyway, the three of them go in to set up the voting.

There’s two tables in the voting station (one for each constituency) and Edwina’s on one, while Old Vicar and his wife are on the other. There’s also a fair few booths which are all ready with pens and curtains and voting stuff. But something seems to be gravely amiss. Edwina’s fan isn’t working. The bastard!

Outside, the candidates arrive. You’ve got Peter Baxter, a straight laced dude who probably has some kind of shady past but is friendly enough. You have Catherine (of of Catherine’s Bar fame), she’s there I guess. And you’ve got Victor Pearce who’s a massive C-word (that’s right, he’s a massive C…onservative) Looks like he’s about to run away with the election because he had the money for a flashy marketing campaign. And what…would you really elect someone who didn’t have billboards and those stupid Party Election Broadcast things they stick on the front of Eastenders (which is ironic because they end up being even less believable)?

Well the candidates are all going to cast their votes now, which I’m sure won’t be predictable in the least. Edwina’s gone to get a new fucking fan, and the Mayor’s lass decides to go help her. This whole thing is so trival that it’s relative unimportance probably means it’s the most important clue of all. Anyways, the candidates are casting their votes. And poor old Victor picked the booth without a pen. Ol’ Vic (car not tor) travels over to hand him a pen then goes back to his desk. Again, notimportant so probably super important – the Death in Paradise way.

Anyways, it isn’t long until Catherine notices something gravely amiss. The cubicle next to her, where the delightful Victor is residing, seems to be leaking blood – which I’m told isn’t normal. Catherine raises the alarm as Victor comes out of his booth with a knife in his back – which I’m also told is not normal. I don’t know how voting works, okay.

Someone straight up murdered him. Guess that’s what you get for being a cun…try music loving man (One day the Earth will cease to be. And it’ll be all our fault. We are parasites feeding on the planet). Roll the fucking titles!!!!

Somewhere that’s not where we just were, the Commish and Mooney are having a classy meeting. You know it’s a classy meeting because they have lemonade. Anyway, it turns out the British police force are not really flexible when it comes to the premise of a serialised crime show. They want Mooney to commit to at least three more seasons on Saint Marie. Mooney turned down Broadchurch to be in this shit, so he’s going to have to think about it for at least 52 minutes. You see, there’s a small matter of a murder to tend to.

At the community centre, the team gathers around the corpse of Victor Pearce. Seems like the cause of death is the massive fuck-off knife sticking out of his back. But he was alone in his voting booth. How the hell could someone stab him and then get away while Victor was voting? Mooney does some C.S.I/Dexter/Sherlock bullshit but doesn’t really get anywhere…seeing as he’s not Sherlock or Dexter or Mr C.S.I. The ‘witnesses’ (people who were in the general vicinity) don’t know nothing about nothing. In fact the only lass who could have stuck the knife in the prick is Catherine (of of of Catherine’s Bar fame), who was in the booth next door.

What’s more Dwayne was outside all the time, so the killer has to be one of the people in the community centre. The 6 suspects…wait, wait a goddamn second, SIX suspects?? Halle-fucking-lujah! It’s not four for once. are as follows: Catherine (obvs), Peter Baxter, Edwina Bitchface, Vicar man (Matthew Dawson), Vicar wife woman (Judith Dawson), and Kemar Pierce (the victim’s son, who was also there I guess).

In a decidedly un-police type way, Mooney and Florence decide to totally disregard Catherine from the investigation due to personal reasons. Mooney rips up Catherine’s picture and thus the only potentially interesting aspect of this story goes in the bin. If you haven’t already guessed, I think this episode is just fucking awful. I even tried to disregard it from my mind for personal reasons…but that’s not a real thing.

Let me propose a Saint-Marie shaking season finale. Catherine kills Victor. It’s as plain as day. It’s the only thing that makes sense. Not willing to accept it, the team fight through it and investigate everyone else. But it all keeps coming back to Catherine. Mooney eventually has to come to the conclusion that Catherine did it. Because she did. Florence, Dwayne and JP have to come to terms with the fact that their friend murdered someone. And Mooney is now the guy who sent down a once much loved member of the community and the whole island knows it.

It may not be perfect, and I agree making Catherine into a villain would be a difficult concept to wrap up all in one episode, but it’s a little better than the bland Ryvita of an episode we got. Not to mention it would bring up a lot of great moments for Series 7.

Anyways, back to reality, and someone seems to have leaked information to the press meaning Catherine is already outed as the killer. Even though she’s totally not. Elsewhere, Mooney has a talk with Siobhan about renewing their contracts with the BBC. Siobhan says she’ll have a think about it.

At the station, it seems that Victor left all his money and his businesses to his son, Kemar. Sounds like a big motive to me. It also seems Victor went to the same school as ol’ sourface Edwina. It also seems that when Victor became Mayor he was going to shut down the orphanage run by Matthew and Judith Dawson.  So many leads… Let’s do the orphos first I guess (that’s the cool new way to say orphans I just made up. Spread it around)

Looks like the orphanage was indeed in danger of being shut down. But it wasn’t a very good orphanage anyway. They only had three kids there. And Matthew and Judith seem awfully attached to the little fuckers. So that’s a big ‘maybe’ on the brutal murdering then.

Back at the station Dwayne and JP are having a little SUB-PLOT. Turns out Dwayne wasn’t going to vote for Catherine because Catherine would have shut down his favourite place to get cheap rum! Well, JP is appalled. The power of friendship should trump cheap rum anyday of the week. Mooney and Florence come back from the kid farm to hear how bank statements showed that Kemar Pearce’s spending was getting out of control. So maybe he offed his dad to get that sweet sweet cheddar!

No he didn’t. Kemar explains his dad threw money at him as a substitute for actually spending time with him. He got accustomed to a certain lifestyle. But he didn’t kill him, he says. So that went fucking nowhere. Mooney’s no closer to figuring out the who or the how of this one. You can tell he’s stumped because he totally recaps everything that’s happened so far…because I guess this episode ran a little short… Mooney calls it off for the day and everyone goes to Catherine’s bar. That’s kinda stupid isn’t it. I mean, she’s a prime suspect in a murder case and you’re gonna all go and… You know what. I don’t give a shit anymore.

The next day, JP finds something odd in Victor Pearce’s diary. There’s an appointment in there, for a hotel rendezvous. There’s no reference to this meeting anywhere else. JP and Dwayne go to have a looksee at the hotel. And what they find will blow your fucking mind.

It’s just Peter Baxter having an affair and Victor got pics to blackmail him. I fear I may have hyped that up a little too much.

Florence has found out that not only were Edwina Face-like-she-just-smelt-a-fart-on-the-Tube and Victor at school together, they were also high-school sweethearts! Victor called it off when he became too busy with work. Yeah, Victor, we’ve all used that one before. I told my ex-wife I was too busy at work (unfortunately the work was digging her grave). Turns out Victor was Edwina’s first love and her last. There’s been no other flame for Edwina’s candle, no other butter for her bread, no other bubbles for her bath. Eww.

Well, Mooney and Florence rock up to Edwina’s place to ask her about the relationship. Turns out Victor changed afterwards, became cold and vindictive and a c…onservatory enthusiast. He didn’t even acknowledge Edwina’s existence anymore. Edwina’s one true love had changed. Sounds very much like Edwina killed the SOB…but as Edwina adds she is a Christian. So I guess that rules her out.

Well there’s only one person left, so we better dish the dirt on him too. Mooney and Florence confront Peter Baxter about the affair and the fact that Victor knew about it. A very strong motive it is too. Apparently, Victor threatened to go to the papers with the pictures of Peter (avec floozy) unless Peter stood down. Peter trumped Victor’s threat with a threat of his own. Peter found out that Victor has an illegitimate daughter – a little bastardette – somewhere on the island.  Fight fire with fire and all that. What the fuck does that phrase actually mean? Fight fire with fire. You just get more fire. Your fire mixed in with their fire. Unless you want fire. How does your fire win exactly? What are the rules?… Where’s my heart medicine? Oh, and Peter Baxter leaked the story about Catherine being prime suspect, I guess.

Dwayne decides to give Peter Baxter a taste of his own medicine. He’s going to leak the photos of him avec floozy to the press! Yes, that’s correct. Police officer Meyers is going to take a piece of evidence and leak it to the press. What the fuck is this – House of Cards? Please…tell me. I don’t even know anymore.

Somehow even more incredulously, Mooney decides to recap everything once again. And it’s starting to become apparent that this episode actually doesn’t have much content in. Like, at all. Of course his recap is pointless, and revelations are not had. So Mooney and Florence go off to a church service for people who aren’t dead like Victor Pearce (who’s dunzo).

While there, Mooney spots Judith Dawson with the kids whose actual parents are dead. This lead him to get a massive revelation. He knows who did dun the murder and he also knows who why what dun it. They both leave the service…which is actually a little really rude. Mooney sends Florence to the kid farm to find something while he…stops the church service?? which is significantly ruder.

On his way to do the devil’s work (I mean stop the church service not masturbation) he bumps into Siobhan who’s just hanging out I guess. She has decided to do another series (hopefully negotiating that she’s in it a hell of a lot more). Mooney doesn’t really give a shit at this present time because he’s gotta catch a killa, yo!

Final reveal time and this one’s a doozy. Because HOLY DEATH IN PARADISE we have a murdering twozie today! It was Edwina face-like-she-just-stepped-on-a-piece-of-Lego-every-second-of-her-existence and it was Judith Dawson. The two people that…it obviously was. I mean everyone else was in their booths, Vicar was at the desk…we saw this happen so it could have only been the other two. Anyway, turns out Edwina was the mother of Victor’s love child and that child is…Judith Dawson.

Judith set up the voting booths the night before the vote, making sure there was no pen in Victor’s booth. She also made sure Edwina’s fan didn’t work so Edwina would have to get up. When Edwina could not find the fan, Judith went to help. But here’s the thing, it was never about the fan. Edwina was never looking for a fan. So there was probably a fan just knocking about and she was telling porkies, because the fan was never an issue. Very sneaky, murderers. Anyway, when Vicar went to give Victor a pen, they had a brief window when Vicar was going back to his desk to sneak out and stab Victor in the back. And then sneak away again.

Motives are probably apparent. You know, he was a shitty guy and a shitty dad. Take them away!!!

Well, all murders wrapped up for another series. The people of Saint Marie are safe for another ten months. But rest assured, waiting in the shadows is a murderer with a very fleshed out motive and three other suspects with similarly fleshed out motives but are harmless but will come under relative suspicion, ready to leap out and murder you. You were warned.

With the bow placed firmly on the case, everyone kicks back at Catherine’s bar. Mooney announces that he and Siobhan are now series regulars and Catherine announces she’s the mayor because Peter was fucked up by that affair thing in the papers and Victor was fucked up by a kitchen knife. So happy endings all round I guess. You know apart from the families of Stephen Langham, Esther Monroe, Charlie Taylor, Jerome Martin, Tom Lewis, Frank Henderson, Julie Matlock, Nicole Hunter or Victor Pearce.

Because they’ve all been murdered. There’s funerals to plan, not to mention the crippling depression that comes from a family member being needlessly taken from the world. Some of them will turn to alcohol, drugs. Some of them will be consumed by an anger they cannot control. Some of them will go to a very dark place where it seems like life might not be worth living at all. And all they want is to see their loved ones’ faces once more. But they never ever can.

Ah well, fuck em. CHEERS!

 

UP NEXT: Later on in the year, I’ll be partaking in a very special Putting the D in the P as I read the Death in Paradise novel ‘A Meditation on Murder’.

Until then…I dunno. Re-read these things I guess. I don’t give a shit.


Hey guys, real Chris here, just want to say a massive thanks to anyone who actually read all these things. When I decided to do this eight (plus) weeks ago, I didn’t actually think I would cover every single episode. But here we are…over 10,000 words later. Christ.

Sorry this one was so late. I’ve been prepping my first crime novel for London Book Fair, busy time for authors and agents. Maybe this even means that Robert Thorogood can make his own blog ripping the shit out of my beloved child-book soon.

Keep thrusting that D into that P, guys…. Eww.

Here’s to Season 7!


 

 

 

 

 

 

Putting the D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 7)

Putting the D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 7)

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Hello and welcome to ‘Putting the D in the P’, my weekly look at the latest episode of Death in ParadiseDeath 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.

Death in Paradise is one of the most confident shows on television. Not only does it outwardly revel in how silly it is, it inwardly takes itself rather seriously. It is also a show which knows if you’re going to watch it, and stops pandering to those who don’t give a shit. In a world where many television programmes bid for your attention, Death in Paradise is comfortable just existing.

That can be seen in it’s advertising (or lack thereof). Think back to when you last saw an advert for Death in Paradise. It was probably the start of the current season, right? Adverts are needed then to get the fans coming back, and is the only time it bids to attract new fans, at least at primetime.

I expect that there are a few adverts for Death in Paradise during the daytime schedule…because let’s face it (and this isn’t a bad thing) Death in Paradise is a daytime show on at primetime. Unfortunately I can’t verify that as the doctor said if I watched anymore Homes Under The Hammer my heart would explode. I just get so excited when they value the houses is all. And that estate agent music. Durr du du du du du duu duur.

Wait, what were we talking about?? Anyway, this week showed the inaugural outing of DI Jack Mooney (Ardol O’Hanlon) who is our new awkward Brit in the sun. It was nice to see that things felt decidedly different with Mooney bringing his unique investigative style to Saint Marie. It was both a breath of fresh air…and a little clunky and awkward. There were a fair few awkward silences. It was weird. I mean, if they were going for Mooney awkwardly adjusting they kinda nailed it. But that doesn’t negate the fact it felt awkward to adjust.

Anyway, let’s take the training wheels off this Irish man and start Putting the D in the P! (My titles are better than the ones on Wikipedia. So there.)

Series 6 Episode 7 – The Cold Call

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Cups of tea. Love a good cup of tea. And so do the team – well, at least Florence, Dwayne and JP. Unless they’re just teacups, and that’s rum in them. Ah well… anyway, this rude American guy comes in and interrupts their rum break. He’s got some information about a seven year old case – the murder of some lass called Julie Matlock. Apparently the woman they pinned the crime on, Nicole Hunter, didn’t do it. And he has proof because Nicole and him were Humph-ing all night long. Shit.

ROLL TITLES.

At the shack, Mooney’s doing some re-decorating which Humph probably wouldn’t appreciate. Like literally throwing out all of Humph’s furniture. Little extreme for a holiday but we all know Humph isn’t coming back any time soon, so I guess it’s fine. Harry the lizard doesn’t seem to mind, but that’s because he’s an extreme racist and British people all look the same to him. Anyway, Florence calls by because she wants some help with the case of Julie Matlock.

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So Mooney goes to the station to talk to Rude American man, who’s called Tyler I guess. He explains the night when Julie Matlock got murdered, a night when St Ursula’s Festival was in full swing with dancing and balloons and various other festival thingimys. Nadine was indeed with him the whole night. We can verify that because there’s flashbacks so it’s totes true. Turns out Tyler’s marriage ended, and Tyler came back to look for Nadine knowing it was festival time once again. Unfortunately, Nadine died in prison of pneumonia. Talk about a….COLD…..case. (We are all just bacteria infesting this planet)

Well, looks like we’re gonna have to re-open this case. Fuzzy flashbacks don’t lie, you guys. It’s the first rule of police school. Dwayne remembers the case well. Julie Matlock was editor of The Saint-Marie Times. Nadine Hunter was a photographer for the paper. Nadine and Julie didn’t get along well – Julie suspended Nadine for being off-her-tits drunk most of the time. Julie was shot while on the phone, alone in the newspaper office. She was on the phone to her daughter and in mid-sentence when she got shot. Her body was never found, and Nadine’s car was fished out of the bay the next day. In the glove compartment of the car was a gun and a bloody scarf.

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In the police files, there is a recording of the murder. Julie Matlock does indeed get fucked up. So it looks like we have a case. The team go to the newspaper office to have a little look see. Obviously, seeing as it was seven years ago, there’s no real evidence here. On the night of the murder, Julie Matlock had sent everyone else in the office home. Mooney does some weird kind of investigating thing which is half puppet show, half interpretive dance. It tells him nothing, because of course it doesn’t.

Whoever killed Julie needed a key to get in so it’s probably one of the other people from the office. Seems like they used a lift to get the body downstairs and then got out the fire exit. Simple, right? There’s only four (Godammit. Four, again. It’s always bloody four.) people it could possibly be (apart from Nadine) Grace Matlock, Julie’s daughter, journalists Tony Garrett and Kai Johnson, or Brian from My Parents Are Aliens, who here is called Ian Matlock, Julie’s husband I guess. But the snag is that Nadine Hunter was the only one who had no alibi. (Wow. That Tyler guy basically killed her.)

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Group interview time! Grace Matlock explains how Julie threw everyone out after Nadine stormed in the office totally tanked. Nadine screamed to Julie that they weren’t finished and then pissed off. Seems Julie wanted some alone time after that. Nadine may have been so messed up because some guy broke her heart. That old chesnut. On the night of the murder, Grace and Kai were at their house, Tony was at a bar seeing as it was festival night, and Brian from My Parents Are Aliens was at his beach house 40 minutes away.

Mooney wants a closer listen to the phonecall, because he thinks there’s something else in the recording. JP gets on it, enlisting his cousin who’s a sick ol’school DJ. The Commish comes to the station to greet Mooney. It’s super awkward. JP brings back a speaker to listen to the call, but it’s not enough. Looks like they might have to get technical on that one.

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In Nadine Hunter’s possessions, Mooney finds a lock of hair in a poly bag. It’s about as weird as it sounds. But seeing as there’s absolutely no way at all in any universe to test a lock of hair to see who it belongs to (like maybe get hairs from each suspect and test them against the lock of hair), I guess that doesn’t mean much.

Mooney calls it a day, which means he has exactly the same work ethic as Humph. Hey, sometimes you need some time to have a SUB-PLOT! At Catherine’s bar, we get reminded that Catherine is running for Mayor. Remember, from way back in episode two I think. Anyway, I’m sure that’ll come up again…maybe next week. Mooney and his daughter, Siobhan have a touching family moment sans a wife/mother because she’s fucking dead. Mooney and Siobhan miss her very much. I know how they feel. My ex-wife was buried alive. I tried to save her but I was too late. Mainly because I forgot where I buried her. Hey, turns out a lot of Delemare Forest looks the same. You live and learn I guess.

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Anyway, back to the case! Mooney’s made up a timeline of events. It looks detailed and super boring. Mooney seems to talk to himself when he’s thinking which all the others find super weird. Time for some quickfire clues. Florence is going through Julie’s diary and finds a 5 digit number – 19871. Interesting. JP finds a resignation letter from Tony Garrett in Julie Matlock’s inbox. Curious. Dwayne finds Brian from My Parents Are Aliens’s been spending money in a lingerie shop – not somewhere you would shop for your wife. Wow! Looks like Ian was having an affair AND got a big payout from his wife’s death. Which one do we even follow up first? If you want to follow up the 5 digit number press 1 now. If you want to look into Tony Garrett’s resignation press 2. If you want to go shopping for lingerie press 3. Oh wait…

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At Ian Matlock’s beach house, Mooney gives the old Good Cop Irish Cop routine. Ian admits to having an affair blaming a mid-life crisis. His mistress was a travel rep, who would pop in from time to time. Julie never found out though. At the newspaper archives, JP and Dwayne are looking into Tony Garrett’s articles. Not much happens really, except a SUB-PLOT where Dwayne is going to reconnect with an old flame.

 

Mooney and Florence go to talk to Tony Garrett about some articles he wrote. He wrote about a school called Calder Hill where a teacher was diddling one of the kids. I’m not going to go into it much, as SPOILER ALERT it isn’t relevant in the slightest. But Julie kinda forced Tony to resign, so maybe he killed her. Even though I kinda already told you that he didn’t. Anyway, it doesn’t matter because both Tony and Brian from My Parents Are Aliens have rock solid alibis.

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Looks like JP’s sick DJ of a cousin has isolated the sound on the phonecall. Mooney decides to go over the case again so none of us forget. He does this while putting sugar in his tea. He puts in like nine spoonfuls which is a concoction I like to call diabetes special drink. JP gets back just before Mooney has to take his insulin and the gang listen to the tape. It’s a weird fucking sound that no one can really pin down.

Seems like maybe we should give up. But a taxi driver gave a statement that Julie was down at the harbour the morning she was murdered. So Mooney decides they should go down and have a look. While there, he and Florence find a safety deposit box place. That five-digit number? The code to a safety deposit box! Mooney cracks it open and finds…some incriminating photos of Kai Johnson, up to his old criminal ways, taken by a private detective.

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Mooney and Florence pay a visit to Kai, who isn’t particularly surprised that Julie hired a private detective to tail him. That would be a doozy of a motive, to keep this info from Grace, his sweetheart, his bae, his underwear buddy. But Kai’s having none of it. He says that Julie even tried to pay him off to get him to fuck off. He told Grace about it and she was furious.

Turns out though that Grace already knew about the pictures too. But she didn’t care. You see her and Kai are having a baby and she looks to be about 18 months pregnant. With a baby on the line, who cares about some shady drug dealing. Well, the police… She told Kai to stop whatever it was he was doing and told her mother to go do one.

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So what did we learn? Nothing really. Waste of fucking time.

 

It’s St Ursula’s Festival time! And let me tell you, Saint-Marie is going fucking nuts. We’ve got bright colours, silly costumes, and everyone is absolutely tanked. Mooney and Siobhan kick back with the team while Dwayne goes to meet his old sweetheart. But it turns out he got the names of two of his old girlfriends mixed up, and, of course, he picked the clingy annoying one. Oh Dwayne…

St Ursula’s Day parties into St Ursula’s Night and Mooney even gets some dancing in. Siobhan tries to tell him something but he can’t hear. The music is way too loud. And that’s what triggers the revelation.  Mooney figures it all out, all while doing some sick dance moves. He calls the team together and they finally get that DNA test on the lock of hair.

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Time for the big reveal! And everyone gathers at the newspaper office. The Commish even comes, to make sure Mooney handles the reveal with the right amount of ridiculousness. It’s key to the job, you see. But the Commish has nothing to fear. Because HOLY MONTY MCSHITKINS it was Brian from My Parents Are Aliens (or Ian I guess). Ian shot his wife…but not in the office. He shot her at the beach house. You see, Mooney was so obsessed with what he could hear on the tape, he didn’t realise what he couldn’t hear. St. Ursula’s Day party music, which would have been deafening in teh office.

Ian was sick of his wife and saw a way to get rid of Nadine Hunter as well who was his mistress. Yes, not the travel rep who pops in and out but Nadine Hunter, who was obsessed with Ian (it was his lock of hair) Ian invited his wife to the beach house, told her to blow off Grace by telling her she was still at the office, then he shot her. Then he drove Nadine’s car into the sea, with the gun and bloody scarf and buried Julie in the concrete of the beach house. You see, that sound that was on the tape? A cement mixer.

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Hot damn! Take him away.

So that was the story of Mooney’s first case. And something’s telling me it won’t be the last because Ardol O’Hanlon is contractually obliged. Overall, it was pretty good. The final revelation actually made a lot of sense. And O’Hanlon seems to play the role of Mooney with the right measure of humour and sincerity. I’m interested to see how his character will develop along with how the team will accept him further.

But we’ve only got one episode left this season. Have I really done seven of these? So let’s go out with a doozy, shall we?….Hopefully

UP NEXT: Voting! Catherine! Murder! Polls! Finales!

See you next week!


If you or someone you know suffers from Homes Under the Hammer addiction call the BBC Action Line on 08000 566 065 for support and advice. Just know that you don’t have to be alone through this trying time. There are thousands, if not millions, of people who are addicted to the high of house valuation.

Putting the D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 6)

Putting the D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 6)

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Hello and welcome to ‘Putting the D in the P’, my weekly look at the latest episode of Death in ParadiseDeath 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.

So usually I plan out these preambles to the article before I watch the latest episode, and you know, this week I had a pretty good one about advertising. Unfortunately/Fortunately that’ll have to wait till next week as this Death in Paradise provided us with a shake-up that’s only been seen once before.

Kris Marshall is out, and Ardol O’ Hanlon is in. DI Jack Mooney is our new fish out of water on Saint-Marie. While I’ll look more into the (ludicrous) way that happened in the recap, it has to be noted that this is probably a good move. While I think we’ll all have a soft spot for Humph, his methods are rather…well…repetitive. Mooney seems like really unique in comparison. In Part One, we saw him playing good cop to get information out of the suspects, while turning on a dime to remind them who’s boss.

I hope they actually follow through with Mooney and I hope the show actually evolves as a result. Imagine next week, when Mooney finally works it all out and finds out who the killer is, and Florence goes ‘Shall I gather all the suspects together?’ and Mooney goes ‘What? No! Why the fuck would we do that? Let’s just go arrest the killer.’ That would be awesome. It wouldn’t just be hilarious and slightly self-mocking, it would prove the strengths of the show. Characters shouldn’t be slaves to the format. The format should be slave to the characters.

While we won’t know that until next week, we got a slightly muddled Part Two this week. As I feared, the first half of Part One (which took place entirely on Saint-Marie) was almost entirely redundant. Indeed, three of the four original suspects didn’t even appear. While it maybe would have been a little weird (and rather difficult) to loop back to Saint-Marie at the end, it would have felt a little more satisfying.

Instead we get a real feel for what Death in Paradise in London really is (so I guess it’s just Death) and it’s…well it’s just Death in Paradise in London. The same show with the Unique Selling Point wholly ripped out. So, it’s not too hard to imagine how happy I was to return to Saint-Marie at the end, even if we were absent one bumbling Englishman.

Anyway’s all this will be coming up in this week’s Putting the D in the P, so let’s just get to it shall we? (Right, so this is my title. The episodes officially don’t have titles, but for some reason on Wikipedia they do. And they’re shit anyway. Apparently, this one’s called Man Overboard. Well, yeah it’s to do with a boat. But the man was on the boat. Not overboard… Also, the first episode was apparently called Erupting in Murder. Which is the lamest thing I’ve ever heard. I know The Seismic Conundrum wasn’t much better, but at least it made fucking sense. Am I rambling? The doctor told me not to get this worked up about television anymore. Where’s my heart medicine? Let’s just get the show on the road, shall we?)

Series 6 Episode 6: International Waters (Part Two) or The Two Wolves

See, it’s not hard. You don’t have to call a builder anymore, because I’m the one who’s fucking nailing it.

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Ah flashbacks. Don’t you love a good flashback? Well here we have a flashback. But don’t worry if you get time-sick. It’s only like 3 hours earlier. And something’s telling me, it might be important. I mean, there’s no way it could not be relevant right? Anyway this flashback shows our four wbanking friends preparing for a big business deal. You remember these guys from Part One? There’s Frank Henderson, the stern one, Steve Thomas, the one with unfortunate hair, Martin West, the jolly one and Dominic Green, the Disney villain one. Frankie sends them all off to do specific jobs to prepare for the suit’s arrival.

Frankie’s job is to go back to his office and blow his brains out, which I guess helps somehow. (Look, I don’t understand banking, okay.) The cleaner tries to bust down the door when she sees the mess but it’s locked. so Steve Thomas busts it open with a fire extinguisher, macho style. This is when Humph, Florence and Mooney show up. And looks like we’re all caught up!

Frank’s as dead as my ex-wife  disco pants.

Roll dem titles, please!

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Looks like we’ve got a classic locked room mystery on our hands, as the door was locked and the key was in Frank’s pocket. Along with the key is a single cufflink, suggesting the cufflink found on the boat belonged to ol’ Frankie boy. So Frank killed Tom Lewis and then killed himself. Simple. But then Frank’s phone rings and it’s a restaurant in Knightsbridge. Turns out Frank tried to book a table for tonight.

So I guess he wasn’t so killed himself after all.

Time for the group questioning again, but obviously we’re down one man. The remaining three wankers don’t have an alibi for when Frankie was killed. What’s more, the big business deal they were preparing for can’t go through now Frank’s dead. Bummer. Humph lays down the fucking law, when he says the two murders must be linked, meaning Tom and Frank’s murderers are one and the same. Dwayne has to strip the three of them and test their clothes for gunshot residue. (I guess Dwayne’s looking for…the NAKED truth… From the moment we’re born, our bodies begin to die.)

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JP and the Commish find a lockbox on guy-dude’s boat and girl dude tells them where the key is. She also starts shitting herself when she finds out they’ve found the secret compartment and shit tons of bootleg rum. JP opens the box to find the evidence he needs.

Back in London, if Mooney understood all the financial mumbo jumbo properly, it turns out that the big property deal on the cards was to solve a cash flow problem. The dude with the deal Mike Wilson would only deal with Frankie boy, so there’s no way it can happen now. Why would someone kill him before it went through? Florence finds that Frank Henderson was heavily influential in getting Steve Thomas a job. So Steve knew Frank outside of the job…but hasn’t told Humph or Mooney. What a fucking bastard. That’s very deceitful.

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Steve Thomas and Steve Thomas’ hair get grilled by the ULTRA COMBO!!! of Humph and Mooney (playing a game of fumbling cop and off-puttingly eccentric cop). Apparently him and Frankie go waaaaaaaay back to when he was 14. Frank was the family driver or something…I dunno, I kinda stopped listening. That hair is putting me off. Wait I’m back in the room cos Steve just dropped himself right in it. He said Frank was missing the cuffllink, which he was, but Humph and Mooney hadn’t told anyone. What an idiot. Steve tries to damage control but he’s worse at that than he is at dying his hair. Looks like Steve Thomas is our killer.

Back at the station, Dwayne has a little bit of SUB-PLOT when he searches Nelson Myers’ name on the criminal database thingy. Apparently, ol’ Nelly has done a spot of breaking and entering in his time. Also, I’ve got to call bullshit out on myself for one second. So Dwayne’s Aunty Lillibeth and Nelson Myers is her brother. Also, Dwayne MYERS. How the hell did I not realise that last week?? Nelson is Dwayne’s father. Duh! Oh and Florence finds out Frank has been paying a shrink I guess.

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Humph and Mooney are staking out Steve Thomas’ pad and have some bro time. Mooney reveals he lost his wife last year, so it’s just him and his daughter alone now. The topic moves on to Humph’s love life, and the Martha thing. Mooney says something that’s actually profound. A tale of two wolves battling inside every one of us. One being hate, anger, stuff like that and the other being truth, love, hope. The one who wins is the one you feed. This scene is fucking great! I’m not…I know I’ve cultivated a natural sarcasm in these recaps…but I actually mean this. The scene is fantastic. Mooney persuades Humph to go see Martha because he wants his job because he believes in love.

So Humph goes to see Martha, but Martha says they can never be together because each of them belong in different places. No more Humph-ing. Not now. Not ever. Bummer.

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Back on the island, JP has finished searching the lockbox he found on the boat. No clues. But something rattles in the box when he picks it up. There’s a false bottom and under that is an SD card. And on that SD card…the mother-lode!

Back at the London station, Humph is putting on a brave face and just carrying on as usual. Dwayne finds out that Martin West and Dominic Green have been doing some dirty deals, betting on the stocks of the other guy’s company going down. But if the big business deal that was rudely interrupted had gone through the stocks would have gone up… Seems like a good reason for murder. Seems like a good red herring. What’s more Martin West’s fingerprints are on the gun! It’s a red herring you guys. Just a red herring.

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Let’s see what these dipshits have to say for themselves. Turns out it was Martin West’s gun that Frankie boy used to shoot himself – that’s why his fingerprints were on it. Dominic Green seems exasperated that the POLICE would find this stuff out. You know, like simple fingerprinting and background checks. He has a face like a stunned arse when Humph and Florence tell them about their little insider trading. But they turn the tables when they say that Steve Thomas has been the one seeing the psychiatrist and Frankie was paying for it! What’s all this about then?

Mooney’s been sitting in a car for like 16 hours (where did he pee?) and Steve Thomas hasn’t moved. But when Humph gets in the car, they spot Steve in like a minute. I would be fucking pissed if I was Mooney. All fucking night? And as soon as Humph gets back in the car, Steve’s there. Almost like some otherworldly creator made this a plot point. Maybe Mooney doesn’t exist. Maybe he’s an actor called Ardol O’Hanlon. And maybe he’s just following a script. If that’s true, how can we know we’re not characters? And the people playing us are just following a script? What if we’re all played by actors, just in one big movie? So what happens when the movie ends?… Where’s my heart medicine?

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Anyway, it looks like Steve Thomas was going to do a runner. Dwayne goes through his things back at the station. Even his phone. But he hasn’t called anyone of any significance apart from his mom. Steve’s talking out his arse. He had to have killed Frankie, right? But there was no gunshot residue on his hands or clothes. So it can’t have been him. What’s more, there was no residue on the others either. Say wha??

Humph wants to talk to the cleaner again, to see if she has any extra information. He’s sure Steve did it, but how did he pull the trigger if there was no gunshot residue on his hand, and how did he get out of a locked room? But wait a second…the cleaner (Katherine Baxter)’s phone number that she gave the police doesn’t exist. What’s more, there’s no Katherine Baxter working at CityMet bank. Son of a bitch.

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JP and the Commish send over a photo they found on the SD card (because it’s nice for them to feel useful) It’s Tom Lewis with his wife…and his two sons. But in the story Frankie boy told way back in Part One, Tom Lewis only had one son. What’s more, this new other son has really really really terrible hair.

Humph and Mooney collectively loose their shit as they have the revelations together. It’s surprisingly erotic. They know what’s what, and they’re going to set a trap for Frankie Boy’s killer by sending a text on Steve’s phone. Now all they have to do is wait.

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Time for the big finale. So let’s gather all the suspects for one final Humph-ing (I haven’t been Humph-ed in four years three months and two days) and HOLY SHITSTACKS Steve Thomas killed the guy dude. You see, it turns out Steve Thomas is in fact boydude! Seeing Tom Lewis on Saint-Marie and seeing that he didn’t recognise him got him really pissed off. So he killed Tommy and hid in the crawlspace before he made his escape.

And TITS MCCHRISTIE Katherine Baxter is Steve’s mum and she killed Frank Henderson. Katherine Baxter fibbed when she said the door to his office was locked. She shot Frank because he realised what Steve had done and was going to tell everyone. Steve and Katherine then faked that the door was locked, engaging the lock after the door was opened. For the final touch, Steve nicked one of Frank’s cufflinks.

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Jeez! Take them away I guess.

As the team celebrate a job well done, JP gets an exemplary rating on his apprasial from ol’ Commish. Dwayne goes to see his dad Nelson Myers and gets some closure there. And perhaps most importantly, Humph makes a big decision.

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He goes to see Martha because he now knows he would swap the Caribbean for her any day of the week. He makes a big romantic speech in the middle of Martha’s restaurant and she accepts. I haven’t been this happy/sad since I buried my ex-wife alive. And Humph has a plan for his job out in Saint-Marie.

It’s only bloomin’ Mooney. Him and his daughter are now out in the Caribbean because visas don’t exist I guess. The Commish says that they have, in essence, swapped Humph for Mooney. Like an ‘exchange program’. You know what, whatever. I guess….Fine. The episode ends with Mooney and the team toasting to new ludicrous and barely believable adventures.

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Overall, this was a fine episode. It wasn’t fantastic. But it wasn’t bad either. Humph’s exit felt rather rushed, and I would have liked to see him say goodbye to everyone especially Florence. But overall, the change to Mooney seems like it’s going to be a good one. I really like Mooney’s character. He has a dash of sadness about him, having lost his wife, while he takes a fundamentally different approach to cracking a case.

Again, I really hope they capitalise on that and don’t just turn Mooney into an Irish Humph.

(Although I do hope Mooney shares Humph’s love of whiteboards. Love a good whiteboard. #GetYourWhiteboardOn)

UP NEXT: All change! Ties and short sleeve shirts! Festivals! Cold Cases! Perverts!

See you next week!

Putting the D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 5)

Putting the D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 5)

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Hello and welcome to ‘Putting the D in the P’, my weekly look at the latest episode of Death in ParadiseDeath 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.

I abjectly refuse to entertain any comments saying this post is late! In what way does ‘Putting the D in the P: Last Night on Death in Paradise’ imply that my post will be out the next day????

Oh wait…

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In the same week that Silent Witness jetted off to Mexico, Death in Paradise jetted off somewhere far less sunny. Good ol’ London. This was something I knew was coming up. Robert Thorogood talked about it at Crimefest last year (I assume that’s okay to say now) but I really thought it was something they were going to save for the finale. This ‘event’ (and believe me, that is in the loosest sense of the word) is undoubtedly the centrepiece of the entire season, so I don’t know what that really says about Episode 7 and 8. Are they going to feel weird, going back to the self-contained and sunny Saint-Marie?

Indeed, half of this episode buckled under an almost unfair expectation. The first thirty minutes took place as usual with Humph, Florence and co. just doing business on the island. It felt long, and almost a little redundant, as we got treated to a murder mystery with suspects that weren’t fleshed out…because the real suspects were in London. Of course, this is a two-parter, so I hope that is remedied somewhat in Part Two. Maybe it’ll all loop back to Saint-Marie somehow.

Anyway, we’ll talk more about this along the way. Here we go guys, let’s start Putting the D in the P! Get your passports ready! (Again, my title seeing as they don’t have them.)

Series 6 Episode 5: International Waters (Part One)

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At the Honore Police Station, it’s annual appraisal time, and let me tell you, it is off the fucking chain. There’s paperwork, questioning, a lingering sense of loss – the whole kahuna! Dwayne’s getting questioned by good ol’ Humph and he appears to have left the improvements section blank! The bastard! Anyway, it looks like JP’s appraisal will have to wait because it’s hometime!

Humph goes to the bar on his todd and is still feeling rather sorry for himself. The woman he loves is halfway across the world, and unfortunately for Humph, he has the worst bookmark ever. A picture of Martha and him just chilling out. Happy times! Anyway, everyone else at the bar seems to be paired up, almost as if they had known and wanted to rub it in Humph’s face. Humph watches a group of English people as they leave, leaving two lovebird dudes alone.

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Later in the night, Humph is suitably tanked (probably) and it seems the guy dude has left, leaving the girl dude alone. He isn’t answering her calls. The boats missing from the harbour and a storm’s coming so they have to wait till morning to do anything.In the morn, the boat is found out at sea, and…of course…the guy dude is as dead as (my ex-wife) baggy pants, bopped on the head with something.

Roll dem titles!

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Back on the boat, Humph takes a look at the crime scene. This dude was an experienced sailor, so it would be highly unlikely he let something bop him on the head voluntarily, even in a storm. No, we’re looking at an unsanctioned bop. A murderous bop, if you will. But no one else is on the boat, and the boat is out at sea. What’s more, the radar sonar thingimigig shows that no other boats came anywhere near the boat during the night.

Humph is a bit perplexed by the fact the blood on his wound is dry, despite him being out on the deck in the middle of a storm. Easy – he was killed below deck, and brought upstairs. Below deck, Humph finds something odd. A shiny coin or a badge or something with a sigil of a flower on it. There’s no flippin’ way this isn’t important.

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Back on mainland, Humph tells JP to search the boat and then question the dudes at the harbour, to see if any of them were………..HARBOUR-ING a grudge. (the only thing we have in common as a species is that we’ll all die someday)

It’s time for the good old group interview scene, and it just so happens there’s four suspects again. Always bloody four. They’re the three women Humph saw leaving the girl dude and the guy dude alone and also the girl dude herself. They were out on Saint-Marie celebrating birthdays or some shit. It doesn’t matter.

The widower, Sophie Boyd, wants to help. The victim was Tom Lewis, her dudebro. Tom didn’t know anyone else on the island. Indeed, the others didn’t know Tom until the holiday so protest to killing him. They’re all really bitchy to Humph and Florence, and are probably the blandest people this side of Honore. But I guess we better run down them. There’s Rachel Baldwin, Hema Patel and Lucy Chapman. Humph takes none of their shit. But the one important thing is that none of them recognise the shiny button thing Humph found on the boat.

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So far, so Saint-Marie. But it’s all looking a little more English when Humph finds out that the flower on the shiny button thing is the logo for CityMet bank in London. What’s more, Lucy Chapman (aside: do you think there’s like a Death in ParadiseTM name generator out there? Say there’s five new characters every episode (one victim, four suspects), eight episodes a season, five plus seasons, that’s over 200 names by now. Jesus Christ.) drops by the station to drop a truth bomb!

Tom was a bit odd to Lucy. She saw him counting loads of cash on the boat one day, and she heard him on the phone agreeing to meet someone. Tom did know people on the island. Even more importantly, we learn some key information in the ensuing flashback. SO IMPORTANT that the writers and the characters don’t even acknowledge it. Lucy can clearly be seen…carrying an apple and a banana. Where is she going with that apple and banana? What us she intending to do with that apple and banana? Intriguing, no? Well I’d have to pick no

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Anyways, JP finds out something to corroborate Lucy’s fruity concerns. A fisherman saw Tom Lewis on his boat before the storm. And then another man got on afterwards. We seem to be getting somewhere! But not to fucking London. This man has to be the killer, so all the women are out I guess. See what I mean? All of this so far was pointless.

Maybe the mystery man was connected to CityMet bank? When Florence says this, JP says that he talked to four men from CityMet bank at the harbour. (Four again. Four a-fucking-gain. FOUR. FOUR!! Four, four, four, four. Some might say it’s a four-mula.) One of these men killed Tom Lewis…but unfortunately they’ve already gone back to London. So, after some wangling from the commissioner, it’s off to London!!!

Finally! Humph, Florence and Dwayne touch down in her Majesty’s finest city (that’s actually Hull I think) while JP stays behind to interview suspects and have an amusing sub-plot with the commissioner, when he decides to observe JP as a substitute appraisal (because Humph never got to JP remember? Good).

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Humph, Florence and JP meet the eccentric DI Jack Mooney (who’s obviously probably going to be Humph’s replacement when Kris Marshall leaves at the end of the series). He’s a lovable doofus, who’s rather idiotic but also has a heart of gold. Remind you of anyone?

Humph, Mooney and Florence go off to CityMet bank to meet suspects five, six,, seven and eight (God help us all) while Dwayne stays in the office on whiteboard duty. Gotta keep those whiteboards ship shape. Whether you’re in the Caribbean or Stoke Newington, it’s all the same! It’s also super clear that the only British thing Dwayne has been privvy to is Wallace and Gromit.

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Anyways, probably surprising no-one the London bankers are utter wankers. I can’t actually really tell them apart. But I guess I’ll reel off their names. There’s Frank Henderson, the banking one, Steve Thomas, the financier, Dominic Green, the money man, and Martin West, the croupier. They’re not much help, but turns out that silver button thing with the CityMet logo was a part of a cufflink. There are only four pairs really?? The wankers in the room. Mooney asks to see them when they return tomorrow. Obviously whoever’s is missing killed Tom Dudebro. Seems simple.

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So simple in fact, that everyone’s gonna go off and have a SUB-PLOT. Humph, Florence and Mooney go to the pub where Humph and Florence confess their love for each other talk about Martha. Humph swings by her restaurant, but it’s closed. Meanwhile, Dwayne goes to look up his Aunty Lillibeth in Hack-a-ney. Unfortunately he finds old bastard Nelson Myers brother to Aunty Lillibeth in his Aunty Lillibeth’s house. Nelson’s a real twat to Dwayne when he realises who he is. That’s all we really get for now. I’m no scientist (they wouldn’t let me on the course unless I wore trousers, which is a dealbreaker I’m afraid) but I think these SUB-PLOTs may well be resolved next week.

Back to the case and JP has dug up an old photo, proving Tom Lewis knew Frank Henderson, so ol’ Frankie’s been telling porkies. Tom was an old friend who liked sailing, that’s all OKAY? Tom’s old life in the city of London was torn apart when his son (say wha???) was killed in a sailing trip. That’s why he off and went to the Caribbean.

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Oh yeah, there’s a trap door on the boat, because of course there is. Gives something for JP and the Commish to do I guess. So the current theory is that Frank killed Tom, hid in the hidey hole, then snuck off when the boat was back at the harbour. Unfortunately, when Humph, Florence and Mooney go to arrest Frankie, it turns out he’s as dead as (my ex-wife) dishwater. It looks like he shot himself.

TO. BE. CONTINUED. Fuck yeah!

Overall, this episode felt a bit cluttered. There’s a lot of information here to digest, but quite a lot of it feels totally redundant. It’s hard to say definitively, seeing as we only have half of the story. Maybe it will all tie together. Maybe all four of the girls on Saint-Marie are implicated somehow and maybe all the wankers are involved too. Of course, what we’re all here for are the key characters and they all got some good moments here. Even Mooney has made a big (and decidedly unique) impression, despite only being involved for 27 minutes.

Obviously, it’ll all hinge on next week!

UP NEXT: London! What happened with the dude who shot himself? I bet he didn’t shoot himself. What happened with the boat dude? I bet he didn’t boat (?) himself. And most importantly, what happened to the apple and banana that Lucy was seen to be carrying?

See you next week!

Putting The D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 4)

Putting The D in the P: Last Night(ish) on Death in Paradise (Series 6 Episode 4)

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Hello and welcome to ‘Putting the D in the P’, my weekly look at the latest episode of Death in ParadiseDeath 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.

This episode of Death in Paradise felt radically different from other episodes of the show. In fact, I can’t remember it ever doing something like this before. Because in this episode, the murder mystery was not the main plot. Usually the actual investigation is the main plotline, and we get some character story through a sub-plot. But this episode flipped that on it’s head. The story of Humph coming to terms with Martha’s imminent departure from Saint-Marie was very much centre-stage, and the whodunit was confined to something that amounts to a bare few scenes.

This makes the murder mystery noticeably weaker than anything that has come before. Of the four suspects, only two were really interviewed, and the conclusion (spoilers) is pretty dumb. We’ll take a closer look as we delve into it deeper. So please come on a journey with me, for the fourth time. Let’s put some D in the P!

(I make up episode titles because they don’t have any)

Series 6 Episode 4: The Damsel and the Death Bowler

Cricket! Cricket! Love a bit of island cricket. Totally not boring cricket. The Commissioner likes a bit of cricket. In fact, he loves cricket so much, he’s the flippin’ umpire of this here cricket game we are presented with. I’m sure nothing could possibly go wrong here.

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So the team win or lose or whatever it is they do in cricket (they wicket?), and they decide to celebrate/commiserate at the club. Sans the commissioner, all the others get tanked because they love cricket.

Thing is, the president of the club, Jerry, got a little more thirsty so he goes to get some more beers. Unfortunately, he never comes back. They assume he just passed out because he loves cricket so much, but team captain Gus Coleman eventually goes to look for him. He finds him out at the wicket, dead, from a shot to the heart!

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Looks like this mystery is going to be a real………..STICKY WICKET………..(sometimes I imagine a universe where I was never born and it’s exactly the same as this one)

Roll those darn titles!

At the station, Humph and Florence are just hanging out. Humph is playing around with a Rubik’s cube which totally isn’t going to be the way he works out who killed the cricket man. It’s rather clear that Humph is trying to forget about his predicament with Martha, the girl he has been Humph-ing while she’s been on the island. At the end of the last episode, Humph realised he had fallen in love with her. So that’s a thing.

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Soon they’re off to the crime scene though, and all the sexual tension between Humph and Florence is gone as the Commissioner informs them of the sad death of Jerome Martin. Looks like he was shot from close by, as Florence finds the shell casing. Humph also finds Jerome’s wallet full of cash, so this wasn’t a robbery. Yeah, no shit.

Only four people were still at the club when Jerome’s body was found…because you know, that’s the number of suspects all these things have, and while Dwayne and JP search the office, Humph and Florence go to meet them. By the truck, they find Gus Coleman, who needed to come and get some air. Humph is taking none of that shit though – he has to go back and join the others. We need a group interview scene, goddamit!

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Humph finds that the cricket game the previous day was a benefit game to raise money for Torey Martin’s treatment. Torey Martin (Jerome’s son) was a promising young cricket prodigy? player? wicket? person before he got into a car accident five months ago, which fucked up his spinal cord. Now, he’s in a wheelchair. With electro-stimulation, he might be able to walk again. But that costs some serious cheddar.

Elsewhere, we have Sabrina Martin, Jerome’s wife and Archie Browne, treasurer of the club, along with Gus (who needed to get some air even though everyone was outside already). JP and Dwayne find a box of bullets in the office safe, one missing. Guess what? A match for the casing of course. Humph asks the suspects about the bullets (see how much quicker this is going than in other episodes???) The bullets were for the gun Gus bought after a break-in. The gun should be in the safe…but of course it’s not. It’s missing. The only four that had the combination for the safe, are the four suspects. (Which actually is a good reason all the other guys at the party could be eliminated. I would give the episode points for this if everyone else from the party hadn’t already been discounted for no reason.)

Everyone was in the bar for the whole night, before Jerome was found, which means two things. One: none of them could have killed Jerome and Two: they must’ve peeed in jars or something. The suspects have been at the club ever since the murder took place, ergo the murder weapon still must be there somewhere. Dwayne and JP are on the case. Florence finds a camera on the bar, which looks like it filmed the party. (Keeping up? This one’s a fast one.)

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Humph feels Gus is holding back, which is probably a good shout, but Dwayne and JP search him and there’s no gun. Dwayne and JP search for the gun, but Dwayne seems a little distracted. It’s not really important.

Humph and Florence review the footage of the party from the camera and it looks like Torey and Jerome had a little tiff. Torey says that his father kept apologising for the crash. Jerome blamed himself because the MOT on the car was out of date. (We know he’s telling the truth, because there’s a flashback. So I guess…yeah.) But Torey says there was nothing wrong with the car; he was just driving too fast.

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Dwayne and JP get back to the station. No gun. While Humph is recapping for the audience, he sees someone messing with the police jeep. He books it outside and opens the bonnet to find nothing really wrong with the jeep. JP looks around and someone at the market did see someone fucking with the jeep. Humph finds a small ripped piece of blue fabric on the engine.

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Humph is still uuming and ahhhing about telling Martha he loves her. He doesn’t want to ruin the rest of the time they have left. At the bar, JP finds out why Dwayne was a little off his game before. Katherine tells him that Dwayne’s father used to take him to the cricket a lot. It’s not a big deal.

The next morning, Dwayne finds out that Jerome was withdrawing huge amounts of cash every week (which you might remember was a key plot point for The Seismic Conundrum investigation as well. It’s a Death in Paradise staple.) Also Jerome had life insurance. Sabrina Martin doesn’t know nothing about no life insurance, but she does know Jerome was paying off some debts with his large withdrawals. Of course, that’s a load of shit and Humph knows it.

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Dwayne and JP are going through Jerome’s email and find an unsent draft that’d pretty fucking juicy. It was to Archer Browne and hinted at some sort of blackmail. Obviously, Archer doesn’t know nothing about nothing. He says that Jerome offered to help him pay off his gambling debts (totally voluntarily). Obviously, this is a load of shit. (So much shit this episode.) Florence finds out that Archer’s garage carried out the assessment on Torey’s car. And Humph thinks that Archer was blackmailing him because of that. Archer continues to talk out his arse for a bit. Humph is having none of it, and notes that Archer’s jumpsuit is a very particular shade of blue.

You see, Humph has a new idea. The one place that isn’t searched at a crime scene? The police vehicle. Humph thinks Archer hid the gun in the jeep, then came to retrieve it. Seems like we have our man.

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At this point, the investigation is paused while the A-Plot really kicks in to gear. Not much happens in a while so I’ll just bust through it. At Martha’s leaving drinks, Humph finally confesses his love for her. Unfortunately, Martha is tanked and falls asleep before she hears it. Dwayne and JP are staking out Archer’s place. They fight and make up. It’s not a big deal. But Archer is seen chucking a gun in the sea. JP gets it out.

In the morning, Humph realises that Martha didn’t hear his confession when she was super tanked. He tries to tell her again, but Florence interrupts them because Florence secretly loves Humph because they’ve found the flippin’ gun. Humph promises to Martha that he’ll be back in time to take her to the airport. Which of course, he won’t. Because he’s like God spilled a person Humph.

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At the station, Humph has his big revelation sequence a little earlier than usual. You see, Dwayne says the way he solves Rubik’s cubes is to take them apart and put them back together. A dot that I cannot manage to connect to the proceeding solution. They go to gather everyone together as usual, but Humph asks Dwayne to find Gus’s coat. Cos that’s important I guess.

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The big finish. Like ten minutes before the end. (This was such a weird episode) Just a quick side-note – (look above) I love how they just dumped Torey out of his wheelchair. That looks like the most unnatural place to seat a paraplegic ever.

Anyway back to the thing. And HOLY FUCKKNOCKERS!!!! it was….no wait this one’s a little difficult. So first off Jerome killed himself, wracked with guilt over the fact that he caused Torey’s crash. But he didn’t. But Archer was blackmailing him telling him that he did. And Gus found that out, so when he found Jerome had killed himself, he tried to make Archer look like the murderer.

Gus moved the gun casing, put the gun in the jeep (remember when he was ‘getting some air’? Yeah fuck off Gus.), retrieved the gun making it look like Archer and then planted the gun in Archer’s office. Archer found the gun, freaked and dumped it in the ocean (as you would, I guess).

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But get this, none of that actually matters. Archer’s still gonna get charged with manslaughter, blackmail and perverting the course of justice. So there was absolutely no reason for Gus to try and frame him. If anything, Gus is the real villain because he wasted the police’s time. And get this, Gus didn’t get arrested.

So it’s time for THE DEATH IN PARADISE ‘CRIMES THAT ARE TOTALLY DISREGARDED FOR SAKE OF PLOT’ LIST brought to you by SHERLOCK, the ‘Well Series 1 – 3 were good. They can never take that away from us.’ show.

  1. Identity Theft (E1)
  2. Illegal Substance Abuse (E1)
  3. Sexual Harrassment (E2)
  4. Credit Card Fraud (E3)
  5. Arson (E3)
  6. Perverting the Course of Justice (E3)
  7. A BIG ONE – Perverting the Course of Justice (E4)

And that was THE DEATH IN PARADISE ‘CTATDFSOP’ LIST.

Anyway, take Archer away I guess.

Oh yeah, Humph totally didn’t get back in time to take Martha to the airport. She’s gone and she’s left a note – a note that pretty much shows that Martha felt the same way as Humph. It’s time for a good ol’ airport chase scene, but this one actually has them chasing after the plane.

It’s actually pretty cool.

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Anyways, Martha doesn’t see Humph and Dwayne chasing after them, and to be honest even if she did, I don’t think she could’ve stopped the plane. So Humph is alone again. Or is he….? I’m not talking about Florence but Florence though. I’m talking about the possibility of him going to London, which is possible. I guess.

This episode was so weird. The actual investigation felt so rushed, and the final reveal wasn’t satisfying in the slightest. Gus’s actions made this investigation (in the most literal sense) a waste of time. The Humph/Martha stuff was fine, and the Dwayne/JP stuff was fun as usual, but it just felt like a mix-up of ideas.

I guess this case really was THE DAMSEL AND THE DEATH BOWLER wait that doesn’t really make sense

Oh well, something big’s on the horizon. Something London. neither does that

UP NEXT: There is a murder. But this one is international motherfuckers.
See you next week!

The House at Baker Street by Michelle Birkby Review – Sherlock Need Not Apply

The House at Baker Street by Michelle Birkby Review – Sherlock Need Not Apply

thabs

So I’ve just finished reading The House at Baker Street by Michelle Birkby and it was a perfectly adequate way to pass the time. And, publishers, make sure you quote me if you’re going to put that on the posters. But sadly, when I think of The House at Baker Street that’s all I really feel. I feel like it was fine. It wasn’t horribly offensive or bad but it wasn’t exactly good either. It exists in the in-between. Fine.

The House at Baker Street is narrated by Mrs Hudson, the bustling, kindly housekeeper to consulting detective Sherlock Holmes and his partner John Watson. One day, when Holmes turns down a client Mrs Hudson apprehends her on the stairs. Hearing the details of the case, Mrs Hudson decides, along with Watson’s new wife Mary, to take the case themselves. Pit against a mysterious and shadowy man who knows a few too many women’s secrets, they must outwit him, operating out of the kitchen in 221B.

It’s a slow start, as Mrs Hudson (who is called Martha here, due to some evidence she may have been the Martha in His Last Bow) and Mary decide to take up the case. The writing, in general, seemed to be very simplistic. I think Birkby was trying to catch the flavour of the time period, through Mrs Hudson’s voice, but it comes off as very plain and lacking character. Mrs Hudson is a woman, of course, and women in those times were treated very differently, so when Mrs Hudson and Mary giggle with each other about being detectives, it is believable, but it doesn’t make it any less tedious reading it from this time era. And there’s an awful lot of ‘bursting out laughing’ in this novel.

Repetition seems to almost be intentional. Mrs Hudson describes some things in great detail, like her kitchen, and details of this keep cropping up when they needn’t. Also, Mrs Hudson’s worries bubble up to the surface A LOT. I counted four separate occasions where she said things like ‘I can’t believe I’m doing this’ ‘Us two detectives!’ ‘How exciting…’ These passages usually stretch on far too long and only serve to grind the narrative to a halt, even when it wasn’t going particularly fast to begin with.

I wasn’t looking to go into The House at Baker Street to engage with a wider message. I was just looking for a different kind of Holmes story. Unfortunately at times, the message seems to take centre stage as nothing much actually happens in its 300+page runtime. Indeed the story is entirely told from the kitchen for quite some time. I also took issue with Mrs Hudson calling herself and Mary detectives right off the bat, even though all they’d done was send one of the Irregulars out to do a bit of snooping. It was as if Mrs Hudson was having way too much fun with a crime that had a lot of victims.

The central message is a clear one. But when a message of female empowerment (which, obviously, I am all for) gets overstretched, I find that sometimes it can do exactly the opposite to how it was intended. I found that Birkby did overstate it a bit too much. Mrs Hudson, and Mary, have a lot of self-doubt and that’s fine. But this is echoed throughout, only serving to highlight the fact that there is little character development in the entire novel. I was expecting a Mrs Hudson, and a story in general, with a bit more bite.

The story chugs along and characters come and go. Holmes and Watson have small roles, and Irene Adler makes appearances throughout. It’s just quite hard to get excited about any of it. The central mystery is not really complex enough to get a good hold of it and the character material isn’t compelling enough to really care. There was definitely promise here, but everything’s just so… I come back to my initial word. Fine. It’s perfectly serviceable and might even lightly entertain. But anyone with a passion for crime fiction will likely be bored long before it’s over.

Also, should it not be called The House on Baker Street instead of The House at Baker Street? That at throws me for a loop every time I look at it.

 

In Short…

The House at Baker Street is a perfectly serviceable crime caper based around everyone’s favourite London address. Mrs Hudson and Mary Watson come into the light as a new detective duo, but unfortunately repetition (in both plot and character) slows this novel down to a snail’s pace. It feels like not enough risks were taken. There’s nothing here to get angry about, but there’s nothing really to praise either. It is fine.

THE HOUSE AT BAKER STREET by MICHELLE BIRKBY

5/10