Well, blow me down! If you hadn’t guessed from my general air of disdain throughout this entire series, I was pretty much done with Death in Paradise. I was all ready to come out at the end of the series, and put in my prediction that it would be cancelled – which was kinda a statement fuelled by anger, as DiP still gets ratings out the wazoo (8 million for Episode One). That’s a lot of peepers glued to the screen. I can’t even get 10 people to view my YouTube channel where I review cemeteries. You want to earn an extra star on my review for your cemetery, you make sure to have facilities (dead people don’t have to poop, but I do
something about cemeteries makes me want to poop)
Then we got episode 7, and it’s possibly the best episode of Death in Paradise I’ve seen. Now I’ve gotta weight that statement with some clarification – it’s the best episode of Death in Paradise I’ve seen, a series that has a lower mark of quality than any other show out there. It’s a great episode, but that doesn’t mean there’s still some problems. But let’s not focus on the negative (first time I’ve ever said that in this blog) the murder mystery is (at least at the outset) entertaining, every member of the investigation team gets their moment in the spotlight (yes, this is one of the episodes where it isn’t just Jack Mooney and three servants) and the direction in particular is fantastic. This was directed excellently by Sarah Walker, who actually put thought into stuff like shot composition, use of colour and screen real estate. Basically it felt like this episode actually had a director, and it wasn’t just cobbled together by the actors and the producers.
Episode 7 was so good I’m gonna find it hard to tear it apart in this post. But I’m afraid I’m bound by my station. So let’s start Putting the D in the P! (You know the deal by now, I make up my own title yada yada yada)!
Series 7 Episode 7 – Open and Shut
An old man with a beard notices some kind of kerfuffle going on up at his neighbour’s house so he calls the police. Dwayne and JP rock up and do some actual police work! Beard’s neighbour has been murdered and the perp is still in the house! Dwayne busts the door down and JP gives chase. He slams into the perp and recognises him as an old school bully of his, Cordell Thomas. Unfortunately the recollection (much like Mooney’s
mini-strokes epiphanies) stuns JP and Cordell gets away. But it doesn’t matter much. JP knows exactly who did it. Case closed. That one was easy! Oh…wait…there’s another fifty two minutes in this episode….SHHHHHIIIIIIIIIIIIIITTTT. SMASH CUT TO TITLES!
Florence rocks up and sees that Mooney has gone night fishing (you know, cos he’s always talking about how he likes night fishing). He’s caught a fish too but there’s no time to put it anywhere. There’s a murder to get to! Dwayne explains that it looks like a robbery gone tits up, because Cordell dropped a backpack full of jewellery when JP slammed him. The victim is Eugene Jones, who seemed to have a tussle with Cordell, and got hit by an ornament and then famously died. Mooney sees that Eugene is clutching a peanut! (which is a very weird weird clue indeed, specially as Eugene don’t have no nuts!)
Mooney and Florence go back to the station to find Cordell Thomas there waiting for them! He knows he’s in the shit so thought he’d turn himself in to save everyone some trouble. Put the kettle on, it’s all over. And faster than usual. Wait, theres forty nine minutes left. FFFFFUUUUCCCKKK. Cordell explains he’s been working for Eugene for yonks, making deliveries. He saw all the jewels, which Cordell knew were already stolen. Cordell wanted the jewels for himself, so was gonna burgle Eugene. And Cordell bopped him on the head with the ornament. Seems open and shut, but Mooney’s still hung up on that damn peanut.
Dwayne and JP go to tell Eugene’s sis that she has one less person to buy Christmas presents for this year, and she’s obviously upset (she hasn’t thought of the savings yet!) but she ain’t surprised it looks like Cordell killed him. Also, it’s Dwayne’s birthday I guess. JP isn’t very happy that Mooney is being very anal about the peanut. JP thinks it should be case closed, because he knows what an arsehole Cordell is. Mooney thinks Cordell didn’t do it and Cordell is covering for someone.
Dwayne and JP go to the Thomas place and meet a cleaner (who’s totes obviously gonna be important) while Mooney and Florence go looking into the stolen jewels. The cleaner, Marie, thinks Cordell’s a decent bloke (maybe he’s changed since JP knew him at school). The jewels belonged to a Charlie Blake, a local mucky Brit whose in crime up to his tits. Charlie seems happy that his jewels have been found, but Mooney thinks it’s a hell of a motive. Maybe Charlie found out Eugene had the jewels and killed him until he was dead. Charlie has no alibi.
Dwayne’s looking forward to a birthday dinner with Darlene, while JP goes and has some character development with Cordell. Cordell claims to have never known Charlie. But it might not matter – Cordell’s fingerprints are on the ornament, and the time of death lines up. Florence gets a key to a lockup Eugene rented. Eugene and his sis were seen to be having an argument there last night and some paperwork Mooney finds means the argument was probably about Eugene selling the cafe Eugene’s sis runs. What a MOTIVE!! And she don’t have no alibi either!
It’s very important to have an alibi. I have plenty of alibis down at my local charity shop where now I’m £££££££££££$$$$$$$%%%%%%%%&&&&&*******LISTEN TO ME NOW PLEASE. WE DON’T HAVE MUCH TIME. I AM NOT HIM. I AM NOT HIM. I WORK AT NORTH FERN. TELL OUR SUPERIORS THAT THE CHARITY SHOP INITIATIVE HAS FAILED. SUBJECT HAS NOT RECALLED THE INFORMATION WE DESIRED. THE LOOP WILL BE RESET BUT HE WON’T LAST ANOTHER FULL CYCLE. I REPEAT, THE CHARITY SHOP INITIATIVE HAS FAILED******^^^^$$$$$$$£££££ If you want one of those hot items, you email me at IWannaPlayHooperWithJP@aol.net. If you want…wait what was I talking about? Oh yeah, I’m gonna start working at a charity shop as part of my community service
(because they couldn’t find where I buried my wife) The potential for about a series’s worth of misadventure is rife, so I’ll have my first check-in next week!
Anyway, back to the episode, there’s nothing to link Cordell to either of the other two suspects, so why would Cordell cover for them? There’s talk of a phone Cordell used and then subsequently dumped (a burner). Florence has an EPIPHANY! Cordell had a takeaway coffee when he got to the station to turn himself in, so maybe the phone was dumped near there. And turns out she’s right, after some garbage dipping, they come up with a phone! Dwayne goes to his birthday dinner, and gets the wrath of Darlene when she finds out his colleagues are still working. Dwayne gets back to work, his dinner on hold, while JP interviews the neighbour again (Mr Beard – Samuel Palmer). He’s a nice beard, and definitely didn’t do it. JP gets an EPIPHANY too. It’s going round. Cordell has changed – he met a girl!
Cordell’s phone shows one last call just before he turned himself in. And you bet it’s to that lass! The cleaner, Marie! But Marie is at the station when they get back. Cordell was covering for Marie, because he luuuuvvvvs her and she’s pregnant. Marie went to see Eugene to deliver 10,000 smackers from a previous job and to say that she wasn’t going to sell the jewels either because Charlie Blake was onto her, and accidentally killed Eugene. Then Cordell covered it up by bopping the already dead Eugene on the head with the ornament. There we go! Case closed. And a bit earlier than…wait there’s still 12 minutes left in the… SHHHITTFFFFUCCCCKKK. I mean there is the problem of the missing 10k so fair doesss.
But it’s okay cos Mooney has an EPIPHANY of his own. And after he’s changed his pants (he got some Epiphany goo in there) they round up the suspects for an Inception-style crime within a crime within a crime. The murderer is Samuel Palmer! And Samuel has scarpered, while Mooney was adhering to the formula. You see Marie thought she had killed Eugene, but she hadn’t. Samuel went in the house, found a jar of peanuts with the 10k, and was there when Eugene woke dazed. Samuel had to kill him. Then Cordell comes to take the blame, not knowing that the scene he finds is not Marie’s doing, but Samuel’s. MIND BLOWN.
TAKE HIM AWAY! Oh wait, Samuel has fucked off so I guess we’ve got a killer on the loose. Oh well, Mooney and Florence have barbecued fish for tea, JP and Cordell reconcile and have a beer together. And Dwayne finally gets his birthday dinner. But it’s interrupted by a cliffhanger that makes no sense! Dwayne’s dad comes in and that’s a…good way to end this…someone thought. Isn’t Dwayne at Darlene’s? How does Dwayne’s dad know where Darlene lives. Ah, fuck it, who cares.
Up Next: This fucking thing ends and I get my life back!