Agatha Christie’s Poirot 3.05 The Tragedy at Marsdon Manor (1991) – 6/10 period murder mystery TV review

Cast / crew
Writer: Agatha Christie
David Suchet: Hercule Poirot
Hugh Fraser: Captain Hastings
Philip Jackson: Chief Inspector Japp
Writer (Dramatisation): David Renwick
Ian McCulloch: Jonathan Maltravers
Geraldine Alexander: Susan Maltravers
Producer: Brian Eastman
Director: Renny Rye
Executive Producer: Nick Elliott

Poirot, Agatha Christie’s 3.05 Tragedy at Marsdon Manor, The (1991)

Poirot is called by a hotelier to solve a case where every person has a perfect alibi. When he arrives, however, another, more urgent case, grabs his attention as a wealthy but sick man is found dead. Poirot immediately suspects murder and the young widow finds herself the next target. With Poirot’s little grey cells up to full speed maybe he can solve both cases.


A bit of a weak episode thanks to some variable pacing and the deliberately difficult-to-believe supernatural elements (which are portrayed amateurishly) but there are still items of note including the reason for Poirot’s presence in the town, Poirot’s waxwork (both added by writer David Renwick) and a particularly horrible murder (not shown graphically but still a nasty one; the victim sleepily opening his eyes to behold his fate was a quality touch). Renwick also supplies a healthy number of lovely incidental gags ("Doctor? There’s a gentlemen outside suffering from Hercule Poirot. He seems to think it’s quite serious.") and bits of business which Suchet and Fraser take full advantage of.

This Poirot, Agatha Christie’s episode contains one scene of strong, impactful gun violence.

Classified 12 by BBFC. Suitable only for persons of 12 years and over.


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